How material is delivered to us… Motivating enough for you?! :S

2 Mar

So, over recent weeks there have been blogs about motivation, and how it is potentially the most important factor that should be targeted by educators to improve students learning, and I thought one issue I think we can all agree that influences a students motivation for a topic is how the material is delivered to us.

“If you tell me I will listen.

            If you show me I will see.

                        If you let me experience, I will learn!”

–       Lao-Tzu


Alderman (1999) devised two approaches for motivating students in a classroom setting via supporting and cultivating them. These were:

  1. Creating a classroom structure and institutional method that accommodates a optimal motivation, engagement and learning environment
  2. Helping students to establish tools that will allow them to become self-regulated

Now lets consider different processes/methods that can contribute to the motivation of students…


  • Educators could use monetary incentives or small incentive gifts to encourage the student to learn. Unfortunately, rewards and punishments have been found beneficial for controlling students’ immediate classroom behaviour, but do not establish intrinsic, long-term desire or commitment to learning (Daniels, 2010).

 Experiential Learning:

  • 1n 1968 Smith and Kolb demonstrated individual experiential learning differences via 4 learning styles

–       Convergent learning style

–       Divergent learning style

–       Reflective learning style

–       Accommodator learning style

Learning styles are an amalgamation of heredity, education, experience and environmental demands. Each style is different, but this does not mean that one is better than the other (Komarraiau & Karan, 2008), learning styles have been positively correlated with individuals work preferences (Saunders, 1997).

Enhanced Lecture:

  • Can you honestly say you have concentrated the entreaty of your lectures? Unfortunately, despite the method of lectures being an academic staple, students are unable to pay attention the whole time! Educators need to be mindful of students’ attention cycles and should endeavour to increase students’ attention by teaching using student-centered enhanced lecture techniques (Bunce, Flens, & Neiles, 2010). Interactivity is a very important in lectures… did you feel interacted with in the lectures in PJ Hall?? Heitzmann (2010) also found that teachers should recap the current lecture and present a preview of the following lecture, because students know what topic they can expect.

In conclusion, there are many different learning styles, and as individuals we all have our own preferences but in a classroom setting we cannot all be facilitated all the time, but via educators using a range of methods to deliver material to us we will become more motivated to learn in contrast to sitting there with a textbook chapter!!

This picture… well i just thought it summed up the current curriculum and thought I’d include it for you to see it!


6 Responses to “How material is delivered to us… Motivating enough for you?! :S”

  1. elburns March 3, 2012 at 12:20 pm #

    When motivating students you have touched on learning styles briefly. Although many individuals have a preference, learning styles specifically do not have much scientific research to back them up.
    There are three core problems in with using learning styles, there is confusion with the definitions, the measures used are weak in reliability and validity, the final core problem is it is very difficult to identify the relevant characteristics in the learner which would identify them as ‘auditory’ or kinaesthetic (Curry, 1990).
    Another problem I have with learning styles although you say that ‘ Each style is different, but this does not mean that one is better than the other (Komarraiau & Karan, 2008).’ Snider (2006) suggests that teachers do believe that lower performing students are put under the ‘kinaesthetic’ banner. But are not learning the right way. It also suggests that learning styles are situational rather inherent. For example kinaesthetic is best for teaching tennis but not necessarily for learning to read. Therefore I agree that a variety of methods should be used to teach but not to classify people as having a particular learning style.

    Snider, V. (2006). Myth and misconceptions about teaching: what really happens in the classroom. Rowman & Littlefield Education. (Curry, 1990) (Komarraiau & Karan, 2008).

  2. psub39 March 6, 2012 at 4:46 pm #

    I agree that motivation is important for academic achievement. Eccles and Wigfiled (2002) found that there is an increase in of lack of motivation in schools; they suggested this is because the students are losing connection with the systems leaving them disaffected and disengaged.

    Guay et al. (2010) tested different levels of student motivation in school subjects. They found that the highest level of intrinsic motivation of a student came from subject preference, however they found a correlation with subject ability and motivation. This suggests that either ability increases motivation or motivation increases ability. It is unclear the cause and effect of the increased motivation however creating a more motivating learning environment does seem to benefit students’ academic achievement.

  3. Alice Funnell March 6, 2012 at 11:27 pm #

    In regards to the incentive idea, Cullen et al., (1975) found that negative incentives, created a higher motivation than students who were given positive ones.
    Doncan (2006) [] researcher two conditions: 1) a group of students who EARNED their grades 2) a group of students who MAINTAINED their grades.
    Group 1, similar to our own system, started on 0, and there grades added up over the semester to an average, whilst group 2 started with the maximum grade, and could drop grades for work that was not to required standard.
    Doncan found similar to Cullen et al, that students had higher motivation to learn when presented with negative incentives.

    • Alice Funnell March 6, 2012 at 11:28 pm #

      P.S LOVE the picture, I agree with you!

      • cassharp March 12, 2012 at 2:12 pm #

        thanks i’ve got a bit of a thing for finding pics atm! lol

  4. psub7b March 7, 2012 at 11:51 am #

    On the topic of enhanced lectures, I certainly agree with you that I have rarely concentrated for the entirety of a lecture. But from looking back and chatting about the modules to my housemate the other day. The segments of information that I often remembered were linked with humour. Either the lecturers jokes or anecdotes or my own creates while revising for exams in order to aid my memory. Utilizing humour in classroom is a useful teaching tool for establishing a classroom climate conducive to learning’ (Kher,1999). In addition to livening up a dull classroom setting. I do recall in the Positive psychology module many cartoons were used for example and this is just one manner of introducing humour into the class. By using cartoons for example it can have many benefits for the students such as ‘motivating students to engage with the lesson’s teaching point arousing interest in a particular idea or topic as well as grabbing and maintaing the students attention’, in addition to numerous other benefits.

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