Motivation for and commitment to social values: The roles of age and gender

Motivation and Emotion (Impact Factor: 1.55). 12/2010; 34(4):354-362. DOI: 10.1007/s11031-010-9187-4


The primary aim of this study was to examine how motives and commitment to social values influence well-being in men and women
of different ages. College students and older adults in the community reported on their motivational orientation (intrinsic
vs. extrinsic), behavioral commitment to idiographic social values, and their current well-being (satisfaction with life,
positive and negative affect). We tested a series of path models with motivational orientation mediating the relationship
between commitment to values and well-being. Consistent with self-determination theory, we found that behavioral commitment
to intrinsically motivating social values was related to greater life satisfaction and positive affect, whereas being committed
to extrinsically motivating values was related to greater negative affect. While age and gender did not moderate these relationships,
meaningful age and gender differences emerged across value-based motivations, commitment, and indices of well-being. This
work adds to our understanding of how values are a guiding influence for successful navigation of one’s social world.

KeywordsValues-Intrinsic motivation-Self-determination-Happiness-Life satisfaction-Positive emotion-Negative emotion

Download full-text


Available from: Joseph Ciarrochi,
1 Follower
117 Reads
  • Source
    • "our sample consisted exclusively of college students who, compared to older adults, may have been particularly sensitive to the metacognitive task of generating behaviors that their peers value. Indeed, research has shown that compared to older adults, college students report greater extrinsic motivation for values (Ferssizidis et al., 2010). Future research should assess whether the present effects generalize to populations beyond college-aged adults. "
    Self and Identity 09/2015; DOI:10.1080/15298868.2015.1080182 · 1.42 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "Initially the variable 'income' was also selected, however it was discarded because of the high number of missing values in both datasets, which reduced considerably the size of the samples for the subsequent analysis. Age and education were selected as control variables because of their impact on social values (Ferssizidis et al., 2010; for education, albeit in the context of social capital (including generalized trust) see Huang, Maassen van den Brink and Groot, 2009). "
    The Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Italy History, politics, society, Edited by Mammone A, Parini G, Veltri GA, 04/2015; Routledge., ISBN: 978-0-415-60417-8
  • Source
    • "In addition we also investigated gender differences in helping , career, interest, and loafing. Previous studies report greater intrinsic motivation in women, greater extrinsic motivation in men, as well as greater commitment to social values in women (Ferssizidis et al., 2010). We, therefore , predicted that men endorse career goals more than women, and women express higher interest and helping motivation. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Different people choose which undergraduate degree to study at the university for different reasons. To date, there have been limited attempts to identify individual differences in motivation that drive the undergraduate degree choice. We identified that people choose university degrees for four reasons: career concerns (Career), intrinsic interest (Interest) in the subject, an opportunity to help others (Helping) and because they are looking for an easy option into higher education (Loafing). We investigated whether these motivation apply to the choice of undergraduate degree in two samples: (1) undergraduate (N = 989) and (2) prospective (N = 896) students. We developed the Motivations Influencing Course Choice (MICC) questionnaire to measure these motivations. Scales of Helping, Career, Loafing and Interest showed good psychometric properties, showed validity with respect to general life goals and personality traits, and predicted actual and prospective degree choices. We demonstrated that medical degrees were chosen due to a mixture of Helping and Career, while engineering degrees were associated with Career and low interest in the degree. The choice of art and humanities degrees was driven by Interest and low concern about future career, accompanied with high Loafing. We also demonstrated gender differences: females were high in Helping (both samples) and Interest (only in undergraduate sample) motivation, while males scored higher in Career (only in undergraduate sample) and Loafing (both samples). The findings can feed into both theoretical accounts of proximal motivation as well as help to improve degree programmes at universities and provide better career advice.
    Frontiers in Psychology 10/2014; 5. DOI:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01244 · 2.80 Impact Factor
Show more