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A quantitative design was used to assess whether home schooled young adults’ needs for competence, autonomy, and relatedness were better satisfied compared with young adults who were traditionally educated. Competence, autonomy, and relatedness are theorized as necessary conditions for intrinsic motivation. Previous researchers have indicated numerous benefits of intrinsic motivation, including better conceptual understanding, greater creativity, and improved problem solving abilities. An important gap remains in the current literature regarding whether or not home schooled young adults’ needs for competence, autonomy, and relatedness are better satisfied compared to young adults who have not been home schooled. The Basic Psychological Needs Scale (BPNS) was used to test competence, autonomy, and relatedness in 99 young adults, age 18 to 25 years. The gender breakdown was 32 males, 66 females, and 1 individual with no report of gender. A MANOVA revealed a statistically significant difference between the 2 groups, with home educated students generally scoring higher on variables measured by the BPNS. Means for the home educated students using the BPNS were 6.3 (competence), 6.0 (autonomy), and 6.0 (relatedness); means for the traditionally educated students were 5.2 (competence), 4.7 (autonomy), and 5.9 (relatedness). Home schooled versus traditionally educated students had significantly higher levels of autonomy and competence satisfaction, but no difference in the level of relatedness satisfaction.


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18 Jul 2022
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  • Alternative title
    • Differences between Home Educated & Traditionally Educated Young Adults

  • Journal title
    • International Social Science Review

  • Volume
    • 90

  • Issue
    • 2

  • Date submitted

    18 July 2022

  • Keywords
  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Gina Riley is an assistant professor in the graduate department of special education at Hunter College.