NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ865113
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 118
ISSN: ISSN-0046-1520
Developing Who I Am: A Self-Determination Theory Approach to the Establishment of Healthy Identities
La Guardia, Jennifer G.
Educational Psychologist, v44 n2 p90-104 2009
According to traditional theories of identity development, exploration of one's potentials and commitment to a coherent set of values, goals, and behaviors are important to healthy identity development. In this article, I examine how the Self-determination Theory framework provides an understanding of motivational processes that influence these identity concepts of exploration and commitment. Specifically, I review evidence that suggests that the concept of basic psychological needs frames the development of identity through processes of intrinsic motivation and internalization and that need support for these processes by important relationship partners may facilitate outcomes, including academic interest, engagement, and achievement, as well as overall well-being. Finally, I provide a glimpse of potential future directions of research, particularly emphasizing the role of need support when identity is in flux (e.g., reactivated exploration either by self-directed or environmentally prompted events) or when challenged by macrolevel social pressures, such as high-stakes testing in education. (Contains 1 footnote.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A