A major area of interest within the field of professional development is the concept of motivation. However, research explaining how to enhance motivation in participants during training is scarce. Grounded in Self-Determination Theory, this study aimed to gain insight into the design approaches of professional development initiatives in higher education. Based on semi-structured interviews with 16 Ecuadorian university authorities in charge of professional development, design features that likely satisfy or frustrate university teachers’ basic psychological needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness were identified. Results pointed to a stronger, yet limited focus on the needs for autonomy and competence, when compared to the need of relatedness. These findings are expected to initiate a discussion on guidelines aimed at enhancing the motivation of professional development participants and to respond to calls for design approaches centred on the learner.
Exploring the consideration of university teachers’ basic psychological needs in the design of professional development initiatives
Christian Jaramillo-Baquerizo, Martin Valcke, Ruben Vanderlinde, & Nathalie Aelterman