New York Times: Guest Post | Helping Students Motivate Themselves

January 9, 2012 by Shannon

January 9th 2012. A recent Times article, “Motivating Students With Cash-for-Grades Incentive,” looks at efforts around the world to pay students for academic achievement. In it, Edward Deci, a psychologist at the University of Rochester and author of of “Why We Do What We Do,” is quoted: “It is easy to get people to do things by […]

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VIDEO: In an interview with ABC News Richard Ryan discusses coming out as gay, lesbian, or bisexual, and how the environment influences the coming out process

June 30, 2011 by Shannon

June 30th 2011. In an interview with ABC News, Richard Ryan discusses coming out as gay, lesbian, or bisexual, and how the environment influences the coming out process. This research was conducted by Nicole Legate, Richard Ryan and Netta Weinstein. Originally posted at:

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YouTube: ABC News Interview with Richard Ryan

June 30, 2011 by Shannon

June 30th 2011. In an interview with ABC News, Richard Ryan discusses coming out as gay, lesbian, or bisexual, and how the environment influences the coming out process. This research was conducted by Nicole Legate, Richard Ryan and Netta Weinstein. ABC World News

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The University of Rochester Motivation Research Group
SDT is an approach to studying motivation and personality that has evolved over the past 30 years from psychological research conducted by Edward L. Deci, Richard M. Ryan, and their collaborators from around the world. Deci and Ryan are professors in the Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology at the University of Rochester, where they direct a research program in human motivation that draws together a group of psychologists, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and visiting scholars with diverse backgrounds who are engaged in a variety of research programs, both basic and applied, including studies of volition and autonomy, achievement motivation, and interpersonal relationships.

Institute for Research and Reform in Education
The president of IRRE is James P. Connell who was formerly a faculty member in the Human Motivation Program at the University of Rochester, where he collaborated on research with Richard M. Ryan and Edward L. Deci. Currently, IRRE uses some of the motivational ideas contained within Self-Determination Theory to do school reform and youth development.

Motivation & Emotion
Motivation and Emotion is a premier specialty journal in its area and has had a long reputation for publishing significant empirical research and reviews focused on human motivation and affect. The journal emphasizes empirical research but may also include theoretical and methodological articles of either a basic or applied nature from any area of psychology and behavioral science, provided that the focus is on motivation and/or emotion. All submissions are handled electronically; to submit a manuscript, please logon to:

Motivation in Educational Research Laboratory (MERL)
A part of Singapore’s National Institute of Education, MERL‘s main focus is on motivational issues in education. The research lab adopts Self-Determination Theory as the core theory in guiding research, and also integrating other motivational theories in their research. MERL’s aim is to translate research findings into practical guides for teachers and practitioners. In Asia, MERL is the only satellite laboratory of the Rochester Human Motivation Lab, led by Associate Professors John Wang, Liu Woon Chia and Nikos Chatzisarantis, and is advised by Professor Tan Onn Seng. To find out more about MERL, click here.

The Center for a New American Dream
The Center for a New American Dream helps Americans to reduce and shift their consumption to improve quality of life, protect the environment, and promote social justice. Working with individuals, institutions, businesses, and communities to conserve natural resources, counter the commercialization of our culture, support community engagement, and promote positive changes in the way goods are produced and consumed.

Relevant Professional Associations

  • The Society for Personality and Social Psychology — SPSP is an association of psychologists who are empirically oriented and have interests that are generally in line with those of the SDT faculty. Most SDT faculty members belong to this association.
  • The Society for the Study of Motivation – SSM is an international, interdisciplinary organization of researchers who study motivation. Its mission is to encourage inquiry into all aspects of motivation from a variety of disciplines and perspectives, and to facilitate the dissemination of findings to a broad scientific audience.

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Is Happiness Overrated?

March 15, 2011 by Shannon

March 15th 2011. The relentless pursuit of happiness may be doing us more harm than good. Some researchers say happiness as people usually think of it—the experience of pleasure or positive feelings—is far less important to physical health than the type of well-being that comes from engaging in meaningful activity. Researchers refer to this latter state […]

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TIME: To Keep Willpower from Flagging, Remember the F-Word: ‘Fun’

October 22, 2010 by Shannon

October 22nd 2010. Exercising self-control isn’t fun. If you’re dieting, for instance, you may easily resist the blueberry muffin at that impossibly aromatic bakeshop you pass by in the morning. You may then have lunch with your friends but just order a small salad (sans creamy dressing, of course). But at some point later in […]

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NOW AVAILABLE: Photos from the 4th International SDT Conference

May 10, 2010 by Shannon

May 15th 2010. 4th International SDT Conference held in Ghent University in Belgium In May, Self-Determination Theory held its 4th international scientific conference in Ghent, Belgium. It was clear that the SDT psychological framework is thriving. The four-day conference attracted 128 papers and 276 posters presented by 550 researchers from almost every country in Europe, […]

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EVENT: Motivation in Education Research Laboratory

January 19, 2010 by Shannon

January 19th 2010. Motivation in Education Research Laboratory at the National Institute of Education in Singapore held  it’s inaugural seminar on motivation in education on January 19th with invited talks from Rich Ryan and Ed Deci on ‘Nurturing the Active Learner.’ Click here to learn more

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