Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 27, Issue 10, pp 3395–3401 | Cite as

Parenting Styles and Academic Motivation: A Sample from Chinese High Schools

  • Jinbao Tang
  • Nan Li
  • Jaime Robert Sandoval
  • Yangyang LiuEmail author
Original Paper


Parenting styles have significant influence on children’s academic motivation. In a sample composed of 226 Chinese 10th grade students and at least one respective parent (147 fathers and 165 mothers), we examined the relationship between parenting styles and students’ academic motivation by applying the self-determination theory (SDT)’s multidimensional perspective of motivation. Students’ academic motivation was assessed directly within the school environment. A questionnaire used to assess parenting styles was administered to the fathers and/or mothers of the students within the home. A path-analysis indicated, firstly, that mothers’ authoritative parenting styles were related to enhanced intrinsic motivation and identified regulation. Secondly, mothers’ authoritarian parenting styles were negatively related to introjected regulation and external regulation. Lastly, both mothers’ and fathers’ permissive parenting styles were positively related to external regulation.


Academic motivation Adolescents Chinese Parenting styles Self-determination theory 


Author Contributions

J.T. wrote the paper. N.L. collaborated in the writing and editing of the final manuscript. J.R.S. commented and edited the final manuscript. Y.L. designed and executed the study and analyzed the data.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jinbao Tang
    • 1
  • Nan Li
    • 2
  • Jaime Robert Sandoval
    • 2
  • Yangyang Liu
    • 3
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Nanjing University of Aeronautics and AstronauticsNanjingChina
  2. 2.University of HoustonHoustonUSA
  3. 3.Nanjing UniversityNanjingChina
  4. 4.Tianjin UniversityTianjinChina

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