Autonomous and Controlled Motivation in a Randomized Controlled Trial Comparing School-based and Computerized Depression Prevention Programs
The depression prevention video game SPARX was shown to be equally as effective as the classroom-based depression prevention program ‘Op Volle Kracht’ (OVK) in reducing depressive symptoms among adolescents girls. Because video games are known for their engaging qualities, this study examined possible motivational benefits of SPARX compared to OVK. No differences in autonomous and controlled motivation were found between conditions at any time point. However, OVK was negatively associated with autonomous motivation during the program, while SPARX and the OVK and SPARX combined were associated negatively with controlled motivation during the programs. Additionally, autonomous motivation and controlled motivation at the start of the interventions and controlled motivation half-way through the interventions was found to positively influence long-term depressive symptoms. Results indicate that depression prevention programs including video games can beneficially influence motivation. Further research is needed to delineate the effects of video game prevention programs on motivation.
KeywordsDepressive Symptom Video Game Control Motivation Autonomous Motivation Depression Prevention
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