ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2018, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (6): 1063-1073.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2018.01063

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Basic psychological need and its satisfaction

WU Cai-Zhi(), RONG Shuo, ZHU Fang-Ting, CHEN Yan, GUO Yong-Yu   

  1. Normal University and Key Laboratory of Human Development and Mental Health of Hubei Province, Wuhan 430079, China
  • Received:2017-10-17 Online:2018-06-10 Published:2018-04-28
  • Contact: WU Cai-Zhi


Deci and Ryan proposed the concept of basic psychological needs based on previous studies and conceptualized basic psychological needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Basic psychological needs originated from the Self-Determination Theory. Currently, measurement of basic psychological needs mainly employs the General Need Satisfaction Scale compiled by Gagné. The satisfaction of basic psychological needs is mainly affected by the surrounding environment, and closely related to the mental health of the individual; the thwarting of basic psychological needs will lead to anxiety and depression. The challenges of basic psychological needs are mainly focused on four aspects: the content of needs, the contradiction between needs, the stability of needs, and the universality of needs. Future research on basic psychological needs should focus on developing the measurement, carrying out in-depth studies on need thwarting, enhancing longitudinal studies, and conducting research on the strategies of meeting basic psychological needs.

Key words: basic psychological need, competence, relatedness, autonomy

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