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Educational Motivation and Complexity

Explain educational motivation. Are issues related to motivation in the educational field becoming simpler or more complex?


Murphy, P. K., and Alexander, P. A. (2000). A motivated exploration of motivation terminology. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 25, 3-53.

van Nuland, H. J. C., Dusseldorf, E., & Martens, R. L. (2010). Exploring the motivation jungle: Predicting performance on a novel task by investigating constructs from different motivation perspectives in tandem. International Journal of Psychology, 45 (4), 250-259.

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Motivation in the educational field

Sources in the literature emphasize approaches to behavior that are used to explain the concept of motivation based on how individuals act in a certain way, and under certain conditions. Research suggests that the most difficult tasks of educators are student interest in a subject. Several approaches to understanding motivation have been advanced in the literature to include theories focused on "arousal, will and instincts" (van Nuland, Dusseldorf, & Martens, 2010). Instincts are used to describe motivation as an internal force that influences behavior. Other theorists have focused on conditioning perspectives in which motivation is "initiated by environmental stimuli pulling people toward enticing objects" (p.251). The study of Nuland et al explored motivation constructs from three different theoretical perspectives to predict the influence of the theories on a performance task. Performance was measured based on how students worked on a problem solving task. The motivational theories include: self-determination theory, self-regulation theory, and achievement goal theory.

"Self-determination theory" stresses the concept of intrinsic motivation which refers to the motivation to engage in activities for sheer joy.

"Self-regulation theory" distinguishes meta cognitive skills [ability to use effective learning strategies]; motivational and behavioral aspects of learning; effort regulation [ability to remain motivated; and time management [ability to plan and monitor learning]
"Achievement goal theory" developed to explain intrinsic aspects of learning. It is combined with the approach avoidance dimension to ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses educaational motivation from the perspective of Motivation theoreis.