Titel: Autonomous learning motivation before and after the Bologna Process Perspectives on self-determination theory

It is still an open question whether the so called `Bologna Process´ has any impact on students learning processes and outcome. This study investigates how self-determined and controlled learning motivation of university students differ before and after the Bologna Process in Croatia.

As a theoretical frame we used self-determination theory (SDT, Deci & Ryan, 2002).

The SDT (Deci & Ryan, 2002) is based on the assumption that people are naturally inclined to integrate their ongoing experiences. This process will be fostered, if people are supported in their basic psychological needs for competence, autonomy and social relatedness. Accordingly, SDT proposes a taxonomy of four types of regulation for extrinsic motivation which differ in the degree to which they represent autonomy. The SDT seems to be particularly appropriate for the investigation of self-determined respectively controlled learning processes of university students.

We have examined the data of 1534 Croatian students (humanities) with variance and cluster analyses.

The dependent variable is self-determined learning motivation; independent variables are aspects of the perception of the teaching-learning environment (including the support of basic needs and other relevant variables for learning and instruction).

The results of the analyses show that students’ perceived self-determination decreased after the implementation of the Bologna process.

A further significant result is the self-determination theory is also valid in a south-eastern cultural context and that motivationally relevant aspects of the perceived learning environment are significant predictors for intrinsic learning motivation and autonomous forms of extrinsic motivation.

KEYWORDS: Bologna Process; self-determination, learning motivation, learning environment, higher education (HE), Croatia


  • Deci, E. L. & Ryan, R. M. (2002) (Eds.). Handbook on self-determination research. Rochester: University of Rochester Press.
  • Müller, F. H. (2012). Prüfen an Universitäten - Wie Prüfungen das Lernen steuern. In B. Kossek & C. Zwiauer (Hrsg.), Universität in Zeiten von Bologna. Zur Theorie und Praxis von Lehr- und Lernkulturen (S. 121-132). Wien: Vienna University Press.
  • Müller, F. H. & Louw, J. (2004). Learning environment, motivation and interest: perspectives on self-determination theory. South African Journal of Psychology, 34(2), 169-190.
  • Müller, F. H. & Palekčić, M. (2005). Continuity of motivation in higher education: A three-year follow-up-study. Review of Psychology, 12(1), 31-43.
  • Müller, F. H., Palekčić, M., Beck, M. & Wanninger, S. (2006). Personality, motives and learning environment as predictors of self-determined learning motivation. Review of Psychology, 13(2), 75-86.
Typ: Angemeldeter Vortrag
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Veranstaltung: Between Tradition and Future Challenges: The Study of Pedagogy in Central and South-East Europe (Maribor)
Datum: 23.10.2015


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