Faculty Publications

Title

Optimal Experience in Adult Learning: Conception and Validation of the Flow in Education Scale (EduFlow-2)

Document Type

Article

Keywords

adult education, adult learning, autotelic experience, flow, loss of self-consciousness, motivation, optimal experience, well-being

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Frontiers in Psychology

Volume

12

Abstract

While the formulation of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's theory of flow, including the experience dimensions, has remained stable since its introduction in 1975, its dedicated measurement tools, research methodologies, and fields of application, have evolved considerably. Among these, education stands out as one of the most active. In recent years, researchers have examined flow in the context of other theoretical constructs such as motivation. The resulting work in the field of education has led to the development of a new model for understanding flow experience in education, specifically dedicated to adult learning. As a result of both a meticulous analysis of existing models and consideration of more recent developments, a new flow scale has thus been developed. The aim of this study is therefore twofold: to validate the new flow measurement scale dedicated to the educational environment, EduFlow-2, and to test a new theoretical model. Students taking a course (N = 6,596), some on-site and others in a MOOC, participated. Several scales were administered online at the end of the participants' course during the 2017 academic year. The factor structure of EduFlow-2 was tested using Exploratory Structural Equation Modeling. Several models were tested. The model with a second-order factor best fit the data. We tested the invariance of the flow scale measure for gender and for the type of training (MOOC/on-site). We were able to show that the flow scale is invariant of the modalities of these two variables. Results revealed good psychometric qualities for the scale, making it suitable for both on-site and distance learning. The analysis also revealed significant relationships with the classic variables of motivation, self-efficacy, learning climate, and life satisfaction. Furthermore, all four dimensions of the model were found to be adequate and consistent with the underlying theoretical arguments. In the end, this new, short flow scale and the theoretical model were demonstrated to be promising for future studies in the field of education.

Department

School of Applied Human Sciences

Department

Department of Languages and Literatures

Original Publication Date

12-30-2021

DOI of published version

10.3389/fpsyg.2021.828027

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