The Oxford Handbook of Human Motivation

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108 Scopus citations


Motivation is that which moves us to action. Human motivation is thus a complex issue, as people are moved to action by both their evolved natures and by myriad familial, social, and cultural influences. The Oxford Handbook of Human Motivation aims to capture the current state-of-the-art in this fast developing field. The book includes theoretical overviews from some of the best-known thinkers in this area, including articles on Social Learning Theory, Control Theory, Self-determination Theory, Terror Management Theory, and the Promotion and Prevention perspective. Topical articles appear on phenomena such as ego-depletion, flow, curiosity, implicit motives, and personal interests. A section specifically highlights goal research, including chapters on goal regulation, achievement goals, the dynamics of choice, unconscious goals and process versus outcome focus. Still other articles focus on evolutionary and biological underpinnings of motivation, including articles on cardiovascular dynamics, mood, and neuropsychology. Finally, articles bring motivation down to earth in reviewing its impact within relationships, and in applied areas such as psychotherapy, work, education, sport, and physical activity.

Original languageEnglish
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages598
ISBN (Electronic)9780199940936
ISBN (Print)9780195399820
StatePublished - 18 Sep 2012

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2012 by Oxford University Press, Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Control theory
  • Ego-depletion
  • Flow
  • Goal research
  • Implicit motives
  • Motivation
  • Neuropsychology
  • Promotion and prevention
  • Psychotherapy
  • Self-determination theory
  • Social learning theory
  • Terror management theory


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