Do teachers’ engaging messages predict motivation to learn and performance?
Previous studies have shown that teacher messages are related with many school-related outcomes, such as students’ engagement and performance. However, it is still unknown how the combination of different elements within teacher messages relate with these outcomes. Based on the message framing theory and the self-determination theory, the present study examined how teachers’ engaging messages link to student's motivation to learn and academic performance. A total of 1209 students between grades 8 and 12 drawn from 63 classes participated in the study. Participants completed self-report measures of teachers’ engaging messages and motivation to learn Multilevel structural equation models were performed (ML-SEM) to test the hypothesized relations among variables. ML-SEMs results confirmed our hypothesis and showed that teacher engaging messages indirectly predicted student's academic performance via motivation to learn. Specifically, the autonomous forms of motivation to learn positively predicted performance and the controlled forms of motivation to learn where negatively related to performance. The present findings highlight a resource teachers can rely on to motivate students and improve their academic outcomes. These results set the basis for future educational interventions targeting teaching practices.. Academic performance was measured using students’ grades obtained from school records.