The relationship between workplace climate, motivation and learning approaches for knowledge workers

G. Vanthournout, D. Noyens, D. Gijbels, P.G.C. van den Bossche

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Workplace learning is becoming a central tenet for a large proportion of today's employees. This seems especially true for so-called knowledge workers. Today, it remains unclear how differences in the quality of workplace learning are affected by differences in perception of the workplace environment and the motivation of knowledge workers to learn. Moreover, the possible role of motivation as a mediating factor between workplace climate factors and learning is underexplored. This paper therefore investigates direct and indirect links between perceptions of the workplace climate, motivation to learn and approaches to learning in the workplace. Knowledge workers (N = 202) in one knowledge intensive organisation were questioned using existing and adapted questionnaires to measure learning approaches, motivation and workplace climate. Correlations and multivariate regression analyses were carried out to assess direct relationships amongst variables. Path analysis was carried out to assess the mediating role of motivation. Results show that both workplace climate factors and motivation directly influence employees' approaches to learning. Some direct relationships between workplace climate factors and motivation were also uncovered. Results regarding the mediating role of motivation showed that the effect of good supervision on deep learning is completely mediated by autonomous motivation. The effect of choice independence on deep learning approach is partially mediated by the same motivational drive. A-motivation was found to partially mediate the link between good supervision and a surface disorganised approach. Implications for research and practice are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-214
Number of pages24
JournalVocations and Learning
Volume7
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2014

Keywords

  • Workplace learning
  • Learning approaches
  • Motivation to learn
  • Workplace climate
  • Knowledge workers
  • SELF-DETERMINATION THEORY
  • ORGANIZATIONAL RESEARCH
  • DETERMINATION PERSPECTIVE
  • ACADEMIC MOTIVATION
  • GOAL CONTENTS
  • AUTONOMY
  • QUALITY
  • CONSTRUCTION
  • ENVIRONMENTS
  • PERCEPTIONS

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