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Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Thesis: Campus only access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Psychology



First Reader/Committee Chair

Ismael Diaz


Spirituality is the tendency of people to ask ultimate questions and look for meaning in life. Employees’ spirituality brings benefits such as better performance, higher satisfaction, and lower turnover. No research study has yet studied how spirituality in the workplace influences what type of motivation employees have. According to self-determination theory, there are several types of motivation including intrinsic motivation and four types of extrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation and two types of extrinsic motivation are seen as autonomous motivation. Autonomous motivation brings benefits to life and also the workplace. This study hypothesizes that people with high spirituality also reported more autonomous motivation when they work. Also, managers can influence employees’ autonomous motivation by providing reasons for why working is important and valuable. In the current study, a survey was sent to participants online. Spirituality, autonomous motivation, satisfaction at work, and some control variables were measured in the survey. The findings show that spirituality did not predict autonomous motivation, managers’ provision of rationales did not predict autonomous motivation, managers’ provision of rationales did not moderate the relationship between spirituality and autonomous motivation, and both autonomous motivation and managers’ provision of rationales predicted job satisfaction. The non-significant results may due to several factors such as low statistical power and measures with psychometric quality. Also, it may suggest that the hypotheses proposed in the current study are not consistent with reality. Spirituality may not be a predictor of employees’ autonomous motivation and this relationship may not worth studying in future research. In future research, I suggest that measures with better psychometric properties are used. Also, other workplace outcomes can be added to study more relationships between autonomous motivation and these outcomes. Besides, other types of research methods can be applied such as true experiments and field experiments in future research. The developmental stage of employees’ spirituality can also be considered in future research.