Toward A Developmental Theory of Children’s Motivation in Sport

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Colleges, School and Institutes


Examines J. Nicholls's (see PA, Vol 71:28719; see also 1984) developmentally based theory of achievement motivation and applies this perspective to children's sport. Five areas of research are identified that support the relevance of Nicholls's theory to the sport domain: variations in conceptions of ability, the importance of demonstrating competence in sport, task and ego-involved goals in sport, relationships between variations in goals and behaviors in sport, and individual differences in goal orientations.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)130-145
JournalJournal of Sport Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1987