Satisfaction of basic psychological needs in an interdependence model of fathers’ own aspirations and those of their adolescent children

Takuma Nishimura, Emma L. Bradshaw, Edward L. Deci, Richard M. Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Anchored in self-determination theory (SDT), we used a sample of 310 Japanese father-child dyads (fathers Mage = 47.95; children Mage = 14.98, 50% female), to investigate: (a) the structure of aspirations in a Japanese sample, (b) the association between fathers’ own intrinsic and extrinsic aspirations and the aspirations reported by their adolescent children, (c) the links between child-reported father autonomy support and children’s self- reported aspirations, and (d) the associations between fathers’ own and children’s own aspirations and the basic psychological needs satisfaction of both fathers and children. Confirmatory factor analysis demonstrated acceptable fit for the theorized model of intrinsic and extrinsic aspirations specified by SDT. Correlation analysis revealed positive associations between the aspirations of fathers’ and those endorsed by their children, which were not moderated by father’s autonomy support. Actor-partner interdependence modeling indicated that when fathers were relatively intrinsic in their orientations, basic psychological need satisfaction was higher for both themselves and their children. These findings highlight the relevance of intrinsic and extrinsic aspirations to the well-being of youth and the interplay between fathers’ and children’s aspirations, suggesting that both fathers’ intrinsic aspirations and parenting styles are associated with children’s basic psychological needs satisfaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-310
Number of pages18
JournalSocial Development
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by Grant‐in‐Aid for JSPS (Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) Fellows.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 John Wiley & Sons Ltd


  • adolescents
  • aspirations
  • basic psychological needs
  • fathers
  • self-determination theory


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