Peer and teacher influences on the motivational climate in physical education: A longitudinal perspective on achievement goal adoption

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This study examined the temporal patterns and concurrent effects of teachers and peers on the motivational climate to student’s achievement goal adoption in the physical education (PE) classroom. On three occasions, over the course of one school year, 655 students in Years 7, 8, and 9 of a secondary school completed measures of approach-avoidance goal adoption, perceptions of the teacher-created motivational climate and perceptions of the peer-created motivational climate in PE. Measures were taken towards the end of each school term. Perceptions of a teacher mastery climate were found to decrease over the course of the school year, while perceptions of a peer performance climate increased. Multilevel analyses considered the intraindividual, interindividual and interclass levels and revealed that perceptions of both the teacher and peer climate influenced student achievement goal adoption over the course of the school year. The findings indicate that future research would benefit from incorporating peer as well as teacher influences on the motivational climate in order to understand the dynamics of student motivation in the PE classroom.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-314
Number of pages12
JournalContemporary Educational Psychology
Early online date5 Aug 2017
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2017


  • motivational climate
  • peers
  • teachers
  • achievement goal theory
  • physical education

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