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Kendra Luckey
Dr. Henderson
ED-205 Survey/Teaching
Motivation Theory Research Paper

Motivation to Matter

Motivation is that intrinsic want to strive to behave in a way. This desire is one that is acquire

intrinsically or extrinsically; intrinsic motivation is the desire that comes from within to behave

appropriately and extrinsic motivation means the motivation is only there for that time of the

event. Eggen shares that to find out if students are intrinsic or extrinsically motivated one would

ask: Do you study to get good grades or to comprehend the content? If the student replies that

they study primarily to get good grades, they are extrinsically motivated, whereas if they said

understanding the course content is more important, theyre intrinsically motivated (p. 288).

Motivation is directly correlated with the teaching and learning. There have been multiple studies

to investigate factors that can play an important role in creating classroom atmospheres that will

impact the students learning in a positive way.

During a conference in 2014 in the Society of Teaching for Higher Learning, experimented

with instructional design and how it increases students motivation. Bates states, the theory and

practice of instructional design is complex; however, the Pedagogy in Action has an excellent

section on Teaching Methods that will apply the environmental factors of motivation, learning,

and contingency design and management (p 167). She believes that many techniques seen on

this facet through the internet can be used in distance learning since the instructional design is

based primarily on intrinsic motivation. She states, to employ these techniques in a face-to-face
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setting lends support to the extrinsically motivated learned by providing external conditions for

learning based on the internal capabilities of the learner (p. 168). The workshop at this

conference was showing how choosing instructional methods and different techniques that fit

that student should increase motivation and increase achievement.

There was an article investigating how E-learning environments are designed to enhanced

learner motivation and improving retention, while also applying motivational design strategies.

Jones states, it is important to enhance motivation to complete self-directed e-learning

throughout the design, sales, and implementation cycles (p.33). There are many factors that go

beyond the teachers control that the student experiences however, one factor that is known to

decrease learner motivation is the load of cognitive material. Sweller stated that, when e-

learning contains both essential information related to the educational goal and additional

interesting and related but extraneous information or even musical accompaniment, cognitive

overload can occur (pg. 36).

Jones investigated, the impact of collaborative and individualized student response system

based instruction on learner motivation (p. 477). There have been a few studies that suggest

SRS based instruction reinforces learner motivation. Jones shared that it has been shown that

80% of students receiving PI in a science course for non-science majors consistently reported

improved attitudes towards science over 4 years of data collection (Duncan 2005), which implies

increased learner motivation (p.479). This investigation provided information that student

became more interest not only in the content but in the overall course as well.

This research includes Dr. John Comings, the director of the National Center for the Study

of Adult Learning and Literacy (NCSALL) and principal investigator of the NCSALL study on

learner motivation (pg. 24). This research was completed with quantitative and qualitative
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research in both an innovative and traditional way. The students had to do some of the following:

answer in-depth interview questions, complete one-on-one interviews, set of activities, and

assigned classes with curriculum. Garner states, The persistence of the two sets of learners will

be compared. By using this design, the effect which the researchers hope will be stronger

motivation can be attributed to the intervention rather than some other variable (p. 24).

These studies use theories to investigate different facets of increasing a students motivation.

These studies presented a challenge to students and determining if the challenges were satisfying

emotionally. Many of these approaches promoted independence for the student, and this makes

them feel as though they have influence and control over their learning which leads them to be

motivated in an intrinsic way. All four of these studies allowed the students to become curious

with the content they were studying, which increases their intrinsic motivation as well. Every

student has their own learning preference; that is why it is important for us to mix up that

learning in different forms such as group work or visual learning. The management system that is

most effective is to the environment to work best. Management should not be centered on the

teacher or just the children; both should work cohesively together and do not revolve around one


In a perfect teaching world, students would be intrinsically motivated to and our activities

would be a cohesive flow. Certain instruction is not as simulating for some as it is for other

students. According to Eggen, there are four different views for understanding a students

motivation which are the following: behaviorist, cognitive, sociocultural, and humanistic theories

(p.396). The behaviorist view is the idea that change is observed behavior once there has been an

experience. The cognitive theories suggest they students are motivated through the desire to

understand and being able to make sense of what they just experienced. Sociocultural theories
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accentuate the role of social interactions towards motivation, and how a student participate in the

classroom with activities and how they contribute to the classroom learning overall. The last

theory that our course text discusses is the humanist approach. The humanist approach

emphasizes the whole person and the motivation to fulfill their true potential as an individual.

After taking the time to investigate theories, I believe that my teaching method will most likely

correlate with the humanist approach.

I believe that the purpose of education is to not only educate the minds of my students, but

also to create good citizens both in and outside of the classroom. In my opinion, it is just as

important for me to shape the student as a person, as it is to teach them the curriculum. Today,

state tests often determine the success of a student. As a future teacher, I do not believe that a

state test should be the only determining factor of whether a student is successful or not in the

classroom. I believe that it should be the school, as well as the teachers responsibility, to provide

a standard for the students. In that standard, it should include that students are to give their best

effort in class, while also being an upstanding citizen of the school community.

Most people think to make a change in the world they should buy a plane ticket, pack a bag,

and prepare themselves for a culture shocking third world country. While this act is noble, I see it

as an escape. Many people can run away from the problems close to home. Many people can

assist those that have nothing, and would be grateful for any assistance. So why am I more

qualified than a world traveler on the hunt to make the world a better place? For me the answer

is simple. I strive to make the world a better place close to home by motivating my students to

impact their learning in a positive way.

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Works Cited

Bates, C. F. (2015). Learner Characteristics and Motivation: How to Achieve Efficient and

Effective Learning. Collected Essays On Learning And Teaching, 8165-170.

Eggen, P., Kauchak, D. (2016). Educational Psychology: Windows on Classrooms, 10th Edition.

[BryteWave]. Retrieved from https://shelf.brytewave.com/#/books/9780133550184/

Jones, A. R. (2013). Increasing Adult Learner Motivation for Completing Self-Directed E-

Learning. Performance Improvement, 52(7), 32-42. doi:10.1002/pfi.21361

Jones, M., Antonenko, P., & Greenwood, C. (2012). The impact of collaborative and

individualized student response system strategies on learner motivation, metacognition,

and knowledge transfer. Journal Of Computer Assisted Learning, 28(5), 477-487.

National Center for the Study of Adult Learning and Literacy, B. M. (1998). Learner Motivation.

Focus on Basics.