This study explores the relationship between student motivation and student engagement. The study, which is rooted in the self-determination (SDT) and engagement (JD-R) theories, responds to the contemporary call for studying this relationship. A bipartite construct of motivation measures both positive and negative components of motivation and structural equation modeling (SEM) by using data from 693 undergraduate and graduate students. In doing so, the study finds that student motivation is an antecedent of engagement. Adaptive cognition and behavior are positively related to engagement (β = 0.30, β = 0.60); maladaptive cognitions and behavior are negatively related to engagement (β = -0.54). The study advances SDT and JD-R. Implications for educationists and possible interventions to enhance motivation and, consequently, engagement are discussed. The study brings clarity to the student motivation-engagement relationship.
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