Teachers' epistemological beliefs as an antecedent of autonomy-supportive teaching

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A large body of research has been devoted to the outcomes of autonomy-supportive teaching (AST). However, research on its antecedents is scarce. The present study explored teachers' personal epistemology as a possible predictor of students' perceptions of AST. We administered surveys to 622 students in 23 seventh- and eighth-grade classrooms regarding the extent to which their teachers tried to take the students' perspective and to provide rationale-major aspects of autonomy support. At the same time, their teachers' personal epistemologies were assessed. Hierarchical linear model analysis revealed that students of teachers scored with more objectivist (absolutist) personal epistemologies reported that their teachers were less likely to be autonomy supportive. AST, in turn, predicted students' optimal internalization of pro-social behavior. Further exploration of a range of teachers' personal characteristics, then, would appear to be an important and productive approach to understanding the variability of teachers' engagement in autonomy supportive practices.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)402-412
Number of pages11
JournalMotivation and Emotion
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2013


  • Autonomy support
  • Internalization
  • Personal epistemology
  • Teaching

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'Teachers' epistemological beliefs as an antecedent of autonomy-supportive teaching'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this