Ivana Rubic, Dora Matijević

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Motivation is considered one of the central elements contributing to the success of language learning. It has been found that teachers’ motivating style has substantive impact on student learning motivation and academic achievement. Hence, in the recent research, much attention has been devoted to conceptualization of motivation and identifying factors affecting learning motivation, as well as ways in which teachers may best develop students’ motivational capacity. ESP students are commonly extrinsically motivated and extrinsic motivation is often associated with lower quality performance. Self-determination theory (SDT) offers a broadened conceptualization of extrinsic motivation, suggesting that in an environment responsive to students’ psychological needs it represents a valuable resource which fosters high-quality learning. Such developments in the research on motivation have prompted a shift in approach to language learning motivation. Drawing from SDT, this paper aims to describe how certain aspects of the learning environment may support as well as undermine ESP motivation, and to provide direction for effective ESP classroom practice.


SDT, ESP, motivation, autonomy

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