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Self-Determination Theory (SDT) is a theory of motivation. It is concerned with supporting our natural or intrinsic tendencies to behave in effective and healthy ways. SDT has been researched and practiced by a network of researchers around the world.

The theory was initially developed by Edward L. Deci and Richard M. Ryan, and has been elaborated and refined by scholars from many countries. Deci is currently a professor at the University of Rochester in the Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology in Rochester, NY; Ryan, a clinical psychologist, was recently appointed as Professor at the Institute for Positive Psychology and Education at the Australian Catholic University in Sydney, Australia.  Together and separately, Deci and Ryan have promoted SDT through theory, research, and their ongoing training of scholars.

This website presents a brief overview of SDT and provides resources that address important issues such as human needs, values, intrinsic motivation, development, motivation across cultures, individual differences, and psychological well-being. Also addressed are the applications of Self-Determination Theory to:

  • Education
  • Healthcare
  • Relationships
  • Psychotherapy
  • Psychopathology
  • Organizations
  • Sports and Exercise
  • Goals
  • Health and Well-being
  • Environment

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MOTIVATION BUSINESS SUMMIT Oct 6-7, 2016

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JOIN US for one of the most significant programs available for today’s business leaders. This is a rare opportunity to hear and interact with Richard Ryan and...

 
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The Atlantic: How Kids Learn Resilience

The Atlantic: How Kids Learn Resilience

June 2016 / By Paul Tough / Self-Determination Theory acknowledged by The Atlantic as an important perspective in education. Interesting article on children’s...

 
See Recently Released SDT Articles Here First

See Recently Released SDT Articles Here First

Recently Published SDT Articles Niven, A, G. & Markland, D. (2016). Using self-determination theory to understand motivation for walking: Instrument development...

 
Scientific American: Why We Love The Games That are Most Challenging

Scientific American: Why We Love The Games That are Most Challenging

March 7, 2016 / By John Pavlus / The Scientific American recently posted an article on why we love the games that are most challenging, pointing to Self-Determination...