Motivation is an important drive in our life if we don’t have any motivating we will face many difficulties in our road. You can say that learning without motivation is as food without salt. So each person in this life need motivation to continue his/ her life because motivation helps us to be more affective on our society. We can do many things in a right road if we have motivation. Motivation is a powerful to do the best thing in daily life.
Motivation is one of the most used words in teaching today, usually in the phrase, ‘ How can I motivate these kids?’ it is also a very misunderstood process.
Motivation is important for people life. It plays a main role in almost everything we do. If we don’t have motivation in our life, we would simply not care about many things such as outcomes, means, education, success, failure, etc.
As you know people are different, so also their motivations have to be different. There are types of motivations that may some people care about it and other doesn’t care.
In my research, I focus on the definition of motivation, types of motivation, theories of motivation, etc..
Statement of the problem:
I study the motivation learning strategies in the classroom which is important to help students to learn English. Some students don’t have any motivation to complete their studying and they don’t care about learning. On the other hand, some students have big motivations to challenge the difficulty of learning life.
Statement of purpose:
I write this research that about motivation for some reasons, these are:
To know the motivated students and non-motivated students at ADU.
To know the factors that cause to make students less motivated.
What motivation is ?
Each person has his own definition of motivation. We don’t have a specific definition for motivation. In fact it’s very difficult to define motivation.
According Ezine (2009) the definition of motivation is to give reason, incentive, eagerness, or interest that causes a specific action or certain behavior”.
Motivation is present in every life function. Simple acts such as eating are motivated by hunger; education is motivated by desire for knowledge and so on. Motivators can be anything from reward to compulsion.
Also, Brown (2001) defines motivation is the degree to which you make choices about goals to pursue and the effort you will devote to that pursuit. (p72).
On my point of view motivation is as the driving force behind an action. This is probably the simplest explanation about motivation. So teachers consider the motivation as a tool to encourage learners to do something.
Ellis defines motivation as referring to the labors which learners put into learning an L2 as a result of their need or want to learn. (1995).
According to the Webster’s, to motivate means to provide with a motive, a need or desire that causes a person to act. Many researchers think motivation as one of the main elements that decide success in developing a second or foreign language; it determines the degree of active, personal participation in L2 learning. (Oxford& Shearin, 1994).
Types of motivation
Motivation is what drives you to behave in a certain way or to perform a particular behavior. It’s the strong reason that leads you to achieve something in your life. There are many types of motivation that can influence in you. These include the following:
Primary or basic motivation
This type of motivation needs the person to show self presentation. This include needs to show hunger, warmth, sex, thirst, avoidance of pain and other primary motivation which can influence in the person’s behavior.(articlesbase,2005-2008)
This type of motivation is known in psychology as learned motivation. It can be different from person to another. It can be describe as a person’s own sense of values and ways to keep moving in life. Many behaviors in secondary motivation are conscious ones. That is, a person consciously put in his mind a particular goal or result and acts in a similar way that brings them closer to that particular goal. What drives them to do or perform the goal is the longing for something which they do not have. This kind of motivation falls into two basic types, extrinsic and intrinsic motivation. (Articlesbase, 2005-2008)
Extrinsic motivation involves the concept of rewarded behavior. This come, by particular types of activities or acting in a particular manner, you are ” rewarded” by a desired ended result. Extrinsic motivation comes from the surrounding areas of the person. (Schunk|Pintrich|Meece, 2008)
In teaching, teachers use this type a lot; they use it because they are obligated to. In schools, there are many types of students who do not have motivation. These types of students have many characteristics such as shyness, being afraid from the teacher and other characteristics. Here come the role of the teacher, the teacher support these students by using extrinsic motivation. For example, if the teacher notices that one student is not participating with his group. Then, he can support him by showing him how to act positively in the group, rewarded him etcâ€¦.
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These types of motivation are less visible. Intrinsic motivation is when you want to do something (e.g. I want to write this report). Intrinsic motivation is internal. It happens when people are compelled to do something out of happiness, importance, or desire. For example, a student is motivated to get high grades (external motivation) but his desire to know about particular subject is intrinsic motivation. Getting high grades is the reward visible for other. For student, being able to master or being expert in a particular subject is a psychological reward for his desire to learn. (Pan, 2006)
Intrinsic motivation can be described as invisible things arise from your depth telling you that you must perform the task which was assign to you. Intrinsic motivation differs from one person to another. Some students do not have the ability to express their thoughts, ideas and perspectives and here come the job of teachers. Teachers should provide their students with intrinsic motivation to achieve the determined goals. However, there are some students who have the ability to act positively inside the class room and sometime their intrinsic motivation surprise the teachers.
Intrinsic motivation and motivation based on extrinsic rewards are, to some degree, in competition with each other. Research has shown that under certain situations, offering extrinsic rewards for engaging in tasks actually undermines intrinsic motivation. ( Stipek, 2002, p129)
Principles of motivation learning strategies
There are some basic principles of motivations exist that are appropriate to learning in any situation. According to Weller, (2005) the principles of motivations are:
The student’s attention depends on the environment that can be used to focus on what needs to be learned.
Teachers can make atmospheres that help students to get persistent effort and positive attitudes toward learning. So the good teachers usually try to create warm and accepting environment that help students to be more motivated that will make them learn better. I think this strategy will be successful in both children and adults. Interesting visual tools, like pictures, posters, brochures, or practice tools, motivate students by capturing their curiosity and attention.
Incentives motivate learning.
Incentives contain human rights and receiving admire from the teacher. The teacher decides an incentive that is likely to motivate an individual at an exacting time. In a general, I think without rewards in self-motivation, learning situation will not succeed. As you know each student must find satisfaction in learning based on the understanding that the goals are useful to them or, less commonly, based on the pleasure of discovering new things.
Internal motivation is longer lasting and more self-directive than is external motivation, which must be frequently reinforced by admire or concrete rewards.
Some people, mainly children of certain ages and some adults, have little capability for internal motivation and must be guided and reinforced constantly. The use of incentives is based on the principle that learning occurs more effectively when the student experiences feelings of satisfaction. Caution should be exercised in using external rewards when they are not absolutely necessary. Their use may be followed by a refuse in internal motivation.
Learning is most effective when an individual is ready to learn, that is, when one wants to know something.
The teacher’s role sometimes is to encourage its development and sometimes the student’s readiness to learn comes with time. If a desired change in behavior is urgent, the teacher may need to supervise directly to ensure that the desired behavior happened. I think that a student may not be reliable in following instructions and therefore must be supervised and have the instructions repeated again and again, if he/she is not ready to learn.
Motivation is enhanced by the way in which the instructional material is organized.
In fact, the information can be meaningful if the material organized to the individual. One technique of organization includes relating new tasks to those already known. Other ways to communicate meaning are to decide whether the persons being taught understand the final result desired and teach them to compare and contrast ideas.
Theories of motivation:
Most of motivation theorists believe that motivation is related in the performance of all learned responses. This mean, a learn process cannot occur unless it is energized. The common question among psychologists is, whether motivation a primary or secondary influence on the learner behavior. Psychologists believe that motivation is associated with the learner behavior. (Huitt, 2001)
There are many theories of motivation, learners use different types of theories to accomplish their goals but I focus on two of these theories include: behavioral, cognitive etc…
According to some psychologist, all process of motivation stands on the behavior of the learner. Actually the learner works on the sequences, the learner put the sequences as the primer goal. For example, I want to get “A” in professional ethics. Since the learner determines this goal in his mind, he will work on that goal until he achieves it. (Huitt, 2001)
A behavioristic psychologist like Skinner or Watson would stress the role of rewards in motivating behavior. In Skinner’s operant conditioning model, for example, human beings, like other living organisms, will pursue a goal because they perceive a reward for doing so. A behaviorist would define motivation as “the anticipation of reinforcement” Reinforcement theory is a powerful concept for the classroom. Learners, like the proverbial horse running after the carrot, pursue goals in order to receive externally administered rewards: praise, gold stars, grades, certificates, diplomas, scholarships, happiness, etc. (Brown, 2001, p 73)
There are many motivational theories that follow their roots to the information processing approach of learning. There was a theory called attribution theory, this theory implies that every learner tries to find a reason for success or failure of self and others. The learner tries to use some certain attribution to find out what was the wrong in his behavior. The attributions could be internal or external and it could be under control or not under control. (Huitt, 2001)
In teaching environment, it is important to help the learner to develop a self- attribution for his behaviors. We have different types of students; some students love to learn about anything and others are not. Otherwise, we should help the learner to make attributions. Being able to make attributions will raise the performance of the learner.
When I move to the college, I see two types of learners. The first type is, when they get a high or low grade; they make some kind of attribution like why did I get this grade, the teacher is not fair etc… And others say, it was my fault, next time I will study hard etc… These attributions enable the learners to higher their performance and make some kind of follow up. Otherwise, attribution theory is important for both students and teachers and teachers should teach their students how to do attribution.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
Abraham Maslow (1995-2009) is considered as the most influential writer in the area of motivation. Maslow divided the hierarchy of human needs into two groups: deficiency needs and growth needs. In deficiency needs, the learner must move through the lower level before the upper one. The eight levels are organized as the following order:
Belongingness and love
Every one of us is motivated by needs. The human being inherited the love of needs from thousands of years. Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs help us to know how these needs motivated us.
Maslow (1995-2009) says that we should satisfy each need. We should start with the lower level and then move to the upper level. Consequently, if we are satisfy by the lower level of needs, we don’t have to concern about the upper level. So it’s a kind of self enrichment.
There are many researchers who study the motivation, the types of motivations, the theories of motivation, motivation of learning strategies, etc. I mention that some researchers who are:
¤ Harter (1981) assumed that intrinsic and extrinsic motivation was negatively correlated.
¤ Generally speaking, extrinsic motivation means external causality based on the perceived locus of causality, which was suggested by Heider (1958), deCharms (1968/1983), and Deci and Ryan (1985).
¤ Lepper et al. (1997) found a decrease in intrinsic motivation with age, but no evidence of an increase in extrinsic motivation.
I distributed 20 questionnaires for the ADU female students. My questionnaire include 10 questions, each question has 4 or 5 parts. Each student should select agree or disagree about each statement. This questionnaire studies that ADU students’ motivation and does the ADU students motivated or not. I found different result because I distributed my questionnaire to different students some students are in second year, some are in third year and other in forth year.
In first part of my questionnaire, I found that 70% of the ADU students, when they study they practice saying the material to themselves over and over but I found 30% of students who don’t agree with this statement. 70% of the students at ADU that mean our university have lots of students who take care for their studying and have motivation to review their material.
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I found that 65% of the students when studying for classes, they read their class notes and the course reading over and over. I found that also 35% of the students who don’t like to read their class notes. I think that each student should read his/her class notes over and over to be more familiar with this material and may he/ she understand it better.
I found that 60% of the students memorize key words to remind them of important concepts when they study but 40% of the students may don’t have ability to memorize key words. It is important thing that students try as possible as they can to memorize key words that will help them in their learning process. Students should try to motivate themselves by putting the aim in the front of their eyes.
Also I found that 60% of the students when they study, they usually make lists of important words and learn by heart these words. I mean they memorize the lists. I found that 40% of the students who don’t like to make lists of important terms and memorize it. As my experience I write a list of new vocabulary and I put it on the door of my room. So when I want to go out I look at this list and I read these vocabularies. This way helps me to remember these vocabularies.
In the second part of my questionnaire, I found that 60% of the students who agree with this statement ” I often find myself questioning things I hear or read in this classes to make a decision, if I find them persuasive” but I found that 40% of the students who disagree with this statement. This statement applies on me, I often find myself asking questions about what I hear and read in my classes.
I found that 60% of the students who disagree with this sentence “When a theory, understanding, or conclusion is obtainable in class or in reading, I try to make a decision if there is good supporting evidence”. I found that 40% of the students who agree with this sentence.
“I treat the course material as a starting point and try to expand my own ideas about it”. I found that 70% of the students who agree with this statement but I found that 30% of the students who disagree with this statement. I think this statement is completely true because If we treat the course material from the beginning and try to think more and say our own ideas about it, that help use to learn and understand the course material better. This way help students to be more motivated in all their courses materials.
In third part of my questionnaire, I found that 65% of the students who prefer course material that really challenges them so they can learn new things but I found that 35% of the students who don’t care about this kind of material if it challenges them or not. Students who prefer material that challenge them, they have motivation to learn new things and get new information and data. I want to say for the 35% of the students “you don’t have intrinsic motivation so please try to change your thoughts, feelings, ideas, etc about that and try to make intrinsic motivation in your heart”.
I found that 75% of the students who don’t prefer course material that arouses their curiosity. I found that 25% of the students only who prefer course material that arouses their curiosity, even if it is difficult to learn. This result really overtakes me because most of students like to look over the new things and they have curiosity to know more things. The most of ADU students want to take the information or data without searching or tying to find it. They like to get it from their instructors. I think that also because some students don’t have enough motivation that may help them to change their thought about that.
I found that 80% of the students who agree with this statement “trying to understand the content as thoroughly as possible is the most satisfying thing for me in classes” but other students at ADU disagree with this statement. It is great percentage of the students who are trying to understand the content in classes.
I found that 65% of the students when they have options, they choose course assignments that they can learn from even if they don’t guarantee a suitable grade. I found that 35% of the students who don’t.
In fourth part, I found 85% of ADU students, the most satisfying thing for them right now is getting a good grade but other students don’t care for getting a good grade, they just want to pass and finish courses as soon as they can. I think that students should think about the grade and the benefit of the course at same time.
I found 65% of students want to get better grades than most of other students but 35% of students don’t want to challenge other students. It is a good thing that students at ADU want to challenge other students to get better grades. Students who have this thought, I think they have a good motivation of learning.
I found that 70% of the students want to do well in the course because it is important to show their ability to their families, friends, relatives, or others. I found that 30% of the students it is not important to show their ability to their families, friends, or others. I think that students who like to show their abilities to their families, friends, etc, they have motivation to study more to get good grades.
In fifth part, I noticed that 65% of the students believe they will receive an excellent grade in the class and 35% of the students don’t agree with this believe. This believe is completely true and all students should agree with it. I think that when students put in their mind that they are good students and they can get an excellent grade, they will get it because they have intrinsic motivation and they encourage themselves.
I found that 50% of the students agree and 50% of the students disagree with this statement “I’m certain I can understand the most difficult material obtainable in the readings for the course”. I wished that find more than this percentage because students should encourage themselves to simplify the difficult material and try as much as they can to understand this material.
I found that 75% of the students confident they can understand the essential concepts taught in the course. I found that 25% of the students don’t confident they can understand the essential concepts.
I noticed that 50% of the students confident they can understand the most complex material obtainable by the instructor and 50% of the students not. I think that 50% of students who cannot understand the material, they should ask their instructor and please each student should not be shy.
I found that 70% of the students confident they can do an excellent work on the assignments and tests in the course and other students at ADU don’t agree with that. This point let us to know there are many motivated students at ADU because they usually try to do the best to get a good job on the assignments or tests in any course.
In the sixth part, I found that 55% of the students when they take a test they think about how poorly they are doing compared with other students but I noticed that 45% of the students don’t think about that. This thought appears from non-motivated student. He/she usually afraid about the score and he/she think that he/she gets low score than other. So each student should try to change this thought and be more motivated.
I found that 80% of the students when they take a test they think about the items on other parts of the test they can’t answer and 20% of the students don’t care about that. I am sure students who think like that, they will face difficulty to answer other questions because all their thought will be with the parts they can’t answer it. This also will effect of the score because most of time they will waste for thinking about the difficulty of the some questions. 80% of the students is a big percentage and we want to decrease it. The motivated student only can deal with this problem because he/she usually don’t think like other students.
I noticed that 55% of the students, when they take test also they think of the consequences of failing and 45% of the students don’t think of consequences of failing. This thought is also not true because it may make students feel upset and disappointment to pass in the course.
I found that 60% of the students at ADU when they take an exam, they don’t feel upset but there are 40% of the students have an uneasy, upset feeling when they take an exam. I think that is good to get like this percentage of the students at ADU. That thing helps students to get good marks in an exam because they don’t feel afraid and upset.
I noticed that 65% of the students feel their heart breathing fast when they take an exam but 34% of the students don’t. This feeling may don’t let students to answer appropriately the questions even they know the answer. Sometimes I feel like this feeling specially when I don’t prepare enough for the exam but we should try to deeper breathe before the exam time and say to ourselves ” we will answer all questions without any afraid and we will get a good marks”. We should motivate ourselves.
In the seventh part, I found that 80% of the students usually study in a place where they can concentrate on their course work and 20% of the students study anywhere. This factor is effect on learning process. Some students prefer to study in open places such as park, garden, sea, etc. I think that like these places where can help students to comprehend and understand better.
I found that 55% of the students don’t make good use of their study time but there are 45% of the students make good use of their study time. As you know time is very important to make everything good especially at learning process. If you manage your time appropriately, you will get what you want in the appropriate time.
I found that 50% of the students agree and 50% of the students disagree of this statement “I get it hard to stick to study schedule”.
I found that 75% of the students have a usual place set aside for studying and 25% of the students don’t like to set in one place for studying.
I found that 55% of the students make sure they continue with the weekly readings and assignments for their courses but there are 45% of the students don’t.
I found that 75% of the students are present at class frequently but 25% of the students at ADU don’t.
I noticed that 70% of the students rarely find time to review their notes or reading before an exam. There is 30% of the students find time to review the notes before an exam. I think that each student will at manage his/her time to get a chance to review his/her notes before an exam but unfortunately 70% of students who didn’t try to organize their time accuracy.
In the eighth part of my questionnaire, I found that 65% of the students often feel so lazy or bored when they study that they quit before they finish what they planned to do but others don’t feel lazy or bored about that.
I notice that 75% of the students work hard to do well even if they don’t like what we are doing. The 25% of the students don’t work hard especially if they don’t like what there are doing.
I found that 65% of the students agree and 35% disagree with this statement “When course work is hard and difficult, I quit or only study the easy parts”. I suggest for each student to try as much as her/she can to simplify the difficult part by asking his/her instructor or friends and don’t ignore the difficult thing because may it will coming in his/her an exam.
I found that 70% of the students, when course materials are dull and uninteresting, they manage to keep working until they finish.
In the ninth part, I found that 70% of the students, when studying for a class, they often try to clarify the material to a colleague or a friend but 30% of the students don’t.
I noticed that 55% of the students usually try to work with their colleagues or other students to complete the course coursework or homework and 45% of the students don’t like to work other students to complete assignments. They like work alone and they don’t need others’ help.
I found that 60% of the student at ADU when studying for a class, they don’t to set aside time to discuss the course material with a group of students from the class. I found that 40% of the students often set aside time to discuss the material with a group of the students.
At the final part, I noticed that 85% of the students, even if they have difficulty of learning the material in a class, they try to do the work on their own, without help from anyone. I found that 15% of the students only who try to do the work with help from others if they have difficulty of learning the material in a class.
I found that 80% of the students ask the instructor to clarify concepts they don’t understand well and 20% of the students don’t ask the instructor about that may they fill of ask their friends or not. I think students should ask the instructor.
“When I don’t understand the material in a course, I ask another student, in this class for help me to understand” by this statement 50% of the students agree and 50% of the students don’t agree. Some students at ADU like to deal with their colleagues if they want help but 50% of the students don’t like to ask others to help them.
I found that 60% of the students try to identify students in their classes whom they can ask for help if necessary but others don’t.
As you see I found some students at ADU who motivated more than others. After I get this result I write some recommendation for both teachers and students.
To summarize, the motivation can play roles in learning process. Motivation is appropriate tool to achieve your goals so we should give us a motivation to do thing whether it is difficult or not. Also, motivation is the power to do thing as soon as possible.
I think that if you don’t have intrinsic motivation that comes within, you will don’t also has extrinsic motivation.
At the end, I want to give teachers, designer of protocol and students some recommendations.
Teachers should try to motivate their students by using different techniques that may help them to show their abilities and skills, for example, if the student make mistake, the teacher shouldn’t punish him/her because the punishment may affect negatively on his/her feeling and attitude. This thing will let student to be passive rather than active and he/she doesn’t want to share his/her ideas, thoughts, feelings, etc.
Teachers should make different activities that make learning fun and interesting. So that will help students to be more motivated to learn and attend the class regularly.
Teachers also should give students freedom to express their ideas, thoughts, etc because this thing may increase a will to learn.
Teachers should start their class by smiling because students will be more comfort and happy to take this course with teacher like that. Also, teachers who more active and interest in the class, will help students to be more motivated.
I notice that ADU students feel disappointment if the score of the first exam is bad so I recommend the teachers to give a chance for improving their scores such as makeup that includes (another quiz, assignment, homework, etc).
Students should be motivated in the learning process and their daily life.
Students should read their class notes and the course reading over and over to be more motivated in the classroom.
Students try to choose that arouses their curiosity, even if it difficult to learn.
If the student doesn’t have motivation, he should try to do something that will help him/her to be motivated, for example, put some aims that he/ she should achieved.
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