Motivation

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Freshman (College 1st year) ・Sociology ・MLA ・3 Sources

Individual motivation is described as the capacity to desire, want, and do something. Motivation is essential in education because it is required to motivate students to like to learn. The learning process is full of obstacles, which inevitably affect students' ability to learn. As a result, the learner's existence of inspiration goes a long way toward encouraging the learning process. Based on the influence it has on student conduct and learning, student motivation improves performance. Motivation encourages students to engage in behaviors that will enhance understanding and, as a result, classroom efficiency. Jensen (2013) states that different students need different types of motivation, a student may be motivated by a price at the end of the semester or another may be driven by associated praise for good performance. Another may be motivated by the idea of being top of the class. The differences in these students propel differences in motivation. Motivation thereby enhances performance by setting goals and working hard and tirelessly towards achieving them.

There are various forms of motivation, and the ones that are commonly used to distinguish them is the intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Shajna (2013) states that intrinsic motivation is the sort of motivation that is derived from within the individual learner. These are virtues that are dictated by the individual himself as opposed to external, environmental or another person’s directive. The sources of intrinsic motivation are self-satisfaction and personal goals. For example, a student may be motivated to work harder to improve his grades from those of last semester. This is a form of intrinsic motivation. On the other hand, extrinsic motivation is external in nature. As such, Shajna (2013) notes that these are external factors that determine behavior. An example of this is the need to please one’s parents or teachers, the fear of punishment and shame, therefore, propelling the learner to work hard and attain a good grade. Most importantly, both forms of motivation direct students’ behavior towards working hard and excelling in their classroom work.

In addition to knowing the various types of motivation, it is critical to understand the various factors that affect motivation. The well-known factors are the higher level of interest, perceptions of competence and self-efficacy, attributions and control beliefs, goal orientation and the higher level of value. The importance that the learner associates the task ahead propels motivation; this is known as higher levels of value. An example is the ability of the student to be motivated to work harder at end semester papers as it comprises of the most marks. Setting goals motivates the student as he will have a direction that is well elaborated and this drives them to work hard to meet these aims. Whatever the interest of the learner, a highly placed interest will motivate the student to participate and work hard at the activity. This distinguishes the result of one student on the various subjects. An example is a student who takes a liking to chemistry may get an A and get a B in one other subject that he indicates limited interest in. The last factor is that of perception. If the learner perceives himself highly and capable of completing a task, he is likely to be motivated as opposed to when perception rate is lower.

After understanding the factors that affect learner motivation, there is need to know some of the various developmentally appropriate strategies that can be used to boost motivation. One is the use of acknowledgment. According to Jensen (2013), this is the recognition of effort and hard work. An instance would be to thank the child for devising a different and correct way of solving a math problem. The second strategy is demonstration. This is particularly helpful in difficult tasks. Demonstration gives them an example of how the work should be completed and shows them that a task is achievable with the right mentality and motivation. The third strategy that a teacher can use effectively is that of creation of additional challenge. Stronge (2014) explains that the objective of motivation is to increase thinking and creativity in task completion. When difficulty is increased, the child can think beyond what he already knows. An example is “Thank you, Laura, for solving the question, how again would you use four figures instead of the two that you have used in solving the same problem?” When used effectively these strategies can successfully motivate the learner and increase knowledge creation.

Finally, knowing about motivation on the side of the student may not be enough to promote learning. There is also the need to understand the role of the teacher and how their motivation affects that of the learner. Stronge (2014) also adds that teacher motivation is the use of techniques that identify and motivate the efforts of the student in a given direction. The effect of this is increased motivation of the students as effort is appreciated. When a teacher encourages a learner and supports their learning process, such as a student is likely to indicate progress as compared to a student that is shown limited motivation. In conclusion, motivation plays a significant role in the educational life of the learner. Knowing the appropriate way of motivating a student thereby goes a long way in facilitating learning and achievement of objectives.

References

Jensen, E. (2013).Engaging students with poverty in mind: Practical strategies for raising achievement.

Shajna, . I. (2013).Teachers' intrinsic and extrinsic motivation towards teaching English: A study among Malaysian in-service english language teachers. Kuala Lumpur: Institute of Education, International Islamic University Malaysia.

Stronge, J. H. (2014).Qualities of effective teachers. Alexandria, Va: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

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