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Department of Psychology

Motivation Lab

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Student collects data on exercise for Dr. Steve Wininger


The majority of my research interests are in motivation, specifically in teaching people to self-regulate. My research spans three different contexts: exercise, learning, and sport. I study how to teach people to self-regulate their exercise behaviors with the goal of long term exercise adherence. In the classroom, I am interested in how teachers should approach facilitating self-regulation of learning within their students. Last, I am interested in teaching people how to maximize athletic performance via the utilization of self-regulation skills.

The essential self-regulation model includes three phases. The first phase is preparation which includes task analysis, goal setting, and strategy identification. Implementation is the second phase consisting of strategy implementation and monitoring. The third phase is evaluation and involves evaluation of goals and strategies as well as reflection on attributions for success or failure.

Over the course of the last decade I have examined the following independent variables on exercise adherence: group cohesion, class leader characteristics, music, self-efficacy, autonomy, perceived competence, exercise intensity, expectations, temperature, goal orientations, achievement motivation, attributions, and attentional focus. The self-regulation model allows me to integrate many of these variables into a testable model. For the past several years in my lab I have focused on the implementation phase of self-regulation, specifically attentional focus strategies.

If you are interested in working with me, or if you have questions about my research, please send me an email at

Dr. Steve Wininger
Director, Motivation Lab

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 Last Modified 9/24/14