Motivation plays an important role in developing elite athletes and coaches. Grounded in Self-determination theory (SDT; Deci & Ryan, 1985), the motivation of elite Saudi athletes and the development of psychometrically sound Arabic measures were the subject of this thesis. In addition, the motivational sequence (Vallerand & Losier, 1999) was also examined in Saudi elite sport context. In pursuit of this primary purpose, three studies were conducted during the course of this thesis, namely, a pilot study, a preliminary study, and the main study. Further, six English version questionnaires were adapted for this thesis, namely, (a) Controlling Coach Behaviors Scale (CCBS; Bartholomew, Ntoumanis & Ntoumani, 2010); (b) the Sport Motivation Scale (SMS-6; Mallett, Kawabata, Newcombe, Otero-Forero, & Jackson, 2007); (c) the Consequences Questionnaire (Duda, Fox, Biddle & Armstrong, 1992; McAuley, Duncan & Tammen, 1989; Ntoumanis, 2001); (d) the Competence questionnaires (Amorose, 2003); (e) the Autonomy questionnaire (Hollembeak & Amorose, 2005); and finally (f) the relatedness questionnaire (Hollembeak & Amorose, 2005). These aforementioned measures were developed within the theoretical framework of SDT.
The pilot study was exploratory in nature in this context, since this was the first of its kind examining Saudi sports players. In other words, there are no Arabic measures of sport motivational within the framework of SDT. The pilot study consisted of two phases. In the first phase, the English version questionnaires were back-translated into Arabic then back-translated into English using guidelines for measures adaptation proposed by Duda and Hayashi (1998). The adapted measures were examined to test their factorial validity and reliability using a small sample size of amateur Saudi footballers (N = 107). The results revealed some issues with the new Arabic measures. In particular, the internal consistencies, and factor loading of some subscales were unsatisfactory. Further, the model fit indices for all six questionnaires were unsatisfactory. These findings could be the result of some linguistic issues in the translated items. In the second phase, the problematic items were modified for all questionnaires. Nevertheless, the same issues were repeated in the results of the second phase study (N = 209), and the decision was made to conduct a preliminary study to solve these issues.
In the preliminary study, extra items were added to each of the questionnaires in order to conduct an iterative process using CFA, which led to choosing the optimal set of items for each questionnaire based on statistical analysis. This iterative process enabled the retention and elimination of items based primarily on statistical grounds. In the end, the optimal sets of items for each questionnaire were identified and their results were satisfactory in terms of reliability and factorial validity. The titles of all six questionnaires were changed to modified Arabic versions, which contained original and added items, or they have a different number of items than the original English versions. They included:
1. The modified Arabic version of coach controlling behavior scale (CCBS).
2. The modified Arabic version of revised six-factor sport motivation scale (SMS-6).
3. The modified Arabic version of the consequence questionnaire.
4. The modified Arabic version of competence questionnaire.
5. The modified Arabic version of autonomy questionnaire.
6. The modified Arabic version of relatedness questionnaire.
The main and final study was conducted to re-examine the factorial validity and reliability of these modified Arabic version questionnaires with elite Saudi players (N = 774). Consistent with the findings of the preliminary study, the present result supported the reliability and factorial validity of all questionnaires.
Another aim of the main study was to examine the motivational sequence (Vallerand & Losier, 1999) in the Saudi sport context. In particular, this study examined the role of the three psychological needs in mediating the relationship between coaches' controlling behaviors and athletes' motivational profiles. The results supported the hypothesis of this study. Consistent with previous studies (e.g., Ntoumanis, 2001; Standage, Duda & Ntoumanis, 2003; Vallerand, 1997), the three psychological needs mediated the relationship between coaches' controlling behaviors and different types of motivation.
In conclusion, this research provided preliminary psychometric support for six Arabic measures of motivation within the theoretical framework of SDT (Deci & Ryan, 1985). Further examination of these measures is necessary as construct validation is an ongoing process (Marsh & Jackson, 1999). These Arabic measures will enable researchers to conduct studies in motivation, psychological need satisfaction, and coaching behavior within SDT perspective.