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Motivation and Academic Performance in Tertiary Education

Added on -2019-09-19

This study examines the correlation between motivational orientations and academic performance in tertiary education. The results suggest that intrinsic motivation leads to lower perceived stress, while amotivation is associated with higher stress levels and weaker psychological adjustment. The study also found that socio-contextual events, such as the use of extrinsic incentives, can lower intrinsic motivation. The limitations of the study include a small sample size and gender imbalance.
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IntroductionStudies reveal that motivation bears a positive influence on the academic performance of students. Individuals can have intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation or, amotivation (Deci & Ryan, 1985;1991). Intrinsically motivated individuals perform an activity for attainment of self satisfaction wheras extrinsically motivated individuals perform to escape defamation or, attainment ofrewards. Amotivated individuals performs activities which are unintended and uncontrolled. This study intends to assess the correlation amid various motivational orientations and performance in a tertiary educational background. Evidence suggests that university education calls for adjustmentment related to social, interpersonal and academic demands (Dunkel-Schetter & Lobel, 1990) which in turn can affect the physical and psychological well being of the student (Aspinwall & Taylor, 1992; Fisher & Hood, 1987). In this study, a theoretical model will be used to test the influence of perceived peer climate on self-motivation followed by well being of the students pursuing higher education.DiscussionThe present study reveals that intrinsically motivated studying leads to lower scores for perceived stress though it is not indicative of better psychological tuning to university life or, higher orders of noticeable well being. Amotivation hasbeen found to be associated with higher stress levels, weaker psychological adjustment to university life, in sync with previous studies that have established link between amotivation and lower perception of competence, lower attentiveness (Vallerand et al., 1989) and low self-esteem (Peterson & Seligman,1984). The results obtained in the present study are supportive of preceding investigations in educational backgrounds (Vallerand & Bissonnette, 1992; Vallerand et al., 1992, 1997), that self initiated motivation yields positive consequences. The learners in the current study are more amotivation in contrastto earlier studies on Canadian learners (Vallerand et al., 1992). According to the cognitive evaluation theory, the intensity of autonomy influences motivation (Deci& Ryan, 1985, 1991; Ryan & Deci, 2000a & b). Students who receive the supportof their guardians and instructors to autonomously choose their career, develop higher levels of intrinsic motivation thereby lowering drop outs in high school (Vallerand et al., 1997). Socio contexual events such as usage of extrinsic incentives like marks (Grolnick & Ryan, 1987) as is relevant in British university system, lowers the sense of autonomy and hence, lowers intrinsic motivation. Hence, the general university climate where the present study was conducted increased amotivational behaviors and resulted in poor outcomes. Finally, sex and entrance qualifications are responsible for a significant level of variation in the scholastic scores. The result that students with higher entrance qualifications attained superior marks in the university course is supportive of earlier results that scores in secondary school and on college entrance examinations are the finest indicators of the level of scholastic achievement in university (e.g., Allen, 1999). Females in the current study were more extrinsically motivated than their male counterparts. The limitations include usage of self reported measures,

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