Patterns of boredom and its relationship with perceived autonomy support and engagement

Virginia M. C. Tze, Rob Klassen, Lia M. Daniels

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The impact of academic boredom on learning and achievement has received increasing attention in the literature; however, the questions of how academic boredom changes over time and how the change relates to antecedents of boredom and student engagement during a course of study remain unexplored. Therefore, the purposes of this study were to: (a) examine the patterns of change in two types of academic boredom (i.e., learning-related and class-related) and in four types of student engagement (i.e., vigor, absorption, dedication, and effort regulation); (b) to examine how the trajectories of boredom and student engagement relate to one another; and (c) to investigate the relationship between perceived autonomy support and the pattern of change in boredom, in a sample of 144 university students. Results of latent growth curve analysis showed that learning-related boredom, vigor, and absorption remained relatively stable over time, whereas both class-related boredom and effort regulation showed a linear change, a pattern of increase and a trend of decrease, respectively. Interestingly, students’ dedication decreased at the beginning and increased when approaching the end of the course. Our results also revealed the fact that changes in boredom in class were linked with changes in both effort regulation and dedication, and the inverse association between perceived autonomy support and class-related boredom experience.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-187
Number of pages13
JournalContemporary Educational Psychology
Issue number3
Early online date14 May 2014
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2014


  • Perceived autonomy support
  • Academic boredom
  • Student engagement

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