Date of Award

Fall 2019

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Educational Studies

First Advisor

Matthew J. Irvin


In recent years, helicopter parenting, or overparenting, has become an increasing concern on college campuses. Research has linked overparenting to a variety of maladaptive characteristics and outcomes among emerging adults, but little is known about how overparenting predicts achievement goals. This study used an integrated framework of self-determination theory (SDT) and the hierarchical model of achievement motivation from the achievement goal approach (AGA) to examine how overparenting and the basic psychological needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness predict the endorsement of achievement goal complexes. Participants were 176 emerging adult college students who completed an online survey. Data were analyzed using hierarchical regression. Overparenting negatively predicted autonomy satisfaction and positively predicted autonomy frustration but had no relationship with any of the achievement goal complexes. Need satisfaction and competence satisfaction positively predicted the mastery approach (MAp) autonomous goal complex. Need satisfaction, competence satisfaction, and competence frustration positively predicted the performance approach (PAp) autonomous goal complex. Need frustration positively predicted the PAp Controlled goal complex. No predictive relationships were found between overparenting, need satisfaction, and need frustration and the MAp Controlled goal complex. The significance, limitations, and implications for future research and practice are discussed.