Dissociating the contributions of motivational and information processing factors to the self-controlled feedback learning benefit

Mariane F.B. Bacelar, Juliana Otoni Parma, Daniel Cabral, Marcos Daou, Keith R. Lohse, Matthew W. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Giving learners control over their feedback schedule has been shown to enhance motor learning. This effect has been attributed to enhanced intrinsic motivation via fulfilling learners’ needs for feelings of autonomy and competence, and greater information processing through provoking learners to estimate their errors. However, there is a lack of studies dissociating the contributions of motivational and information processing factors to the self-controlled feedback learning effect. To address this shortcoming, we crossed self-controlled feedback and error estimation in the same experimental design in the largest pre-registered self-control study to date (N = 200). Participants performed a nondominant arm bean bag tossing task under one of four training conditions in which feedback schedule was either controlled by the participant or matched to a counterpart and error estimation was either mandatory or not enforced. Learning was assessed 24 h after the acquisition phase in retention and transfer tests. Results showed no statistically significant learning advantage for participants given control over feedback despite promoting spontaneous error estimation, and, surprisingly, results showed a disadvantage specific to the transfer test for participants obligated to estimate their errors. Further, although self-control over feedback resulted in its delivery on relatively accurate trials and slightly increased learners’ perceived autonomy, it did not enhance perceived competence or intrinsic motivation. At the individual level, however, intrinsic motivation did predict motor learning. The present study challenges the benefit of self-controlled feedback while supporting the positive effect of intrinsic motivation on motor learning.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102119
JournalPsychology of Sport and Exercise
Volume59
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2022

Keywords

  • Autonomy support
  • Intrinsic motivation
  • OPTIMAL theory
  • Performance estimation

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