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Self-motivation in Higher Education

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Added on  2019-09-19

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Self-motivation and well-being in higher educationIntroduction Motivation has been shown the positive influence of a study strategy, academic performance, and well-being in students in domains of education. However, motivation can be considered from many different perceptive, several importance of education domain has been said by Deci and Ryan (1985,1991) which he has suggested three motivation theory which is in intrinsically motivated, extrinsically motivated or amotivated. Intrinsic motivation refers to the desire to perform an activity for itself whereas extrinsic motivation refers to activities that engaged in as a mean to an end such as, to gain reward or avoid criticism, rather than for satisfaction of the activity itself. In contrast, amotivation refers to behaviours that are neither extrinsically nor intrinsically motivated, rather amotivated behaviour are non-regulated and non-intentional. In addition, within Deci and Ryan’s framework, extrinsic motivation is not a unitary concept.They suggest different types of extrinsically motivation behaviours that controlled along a range between amotivation and intrinsic motivation, and varying in the extent to which they are self-determined; form lower to higher they are, external regulation, introjection, and identification. External regulation refers to behaviour that are perceived as non-autonomous, that is determined merely by external forces rather that individuals. Introjected regulation refers to activities that are partly internalized through past external contingencies but not in a truly self-determined way, while identified regulation refers to behaviour that are judged as important for the individual, and perceived as autonomous and chosen by themselves. In educational contexts, these motivational orientations have been associated with a range of outcomes. Intrinsic motivation has been found to contribute positively to
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the learning process and the quality of learning. In particular, intrinsically motivated individuals have been found to be more likely to engage deep- level study strategies (Ames & Archer, 1988), display enhanced conceptual learning (Grolnick & Ryan, 1987), creativity (Koestner, Ryan, Bernieri, & Holt, 1984) and cognitive flexibility (McGraw & McCullers, 1979), have a greater recall of learned material (Ryan, Connell, Plant, Robinson & Evans, 1984), and better academic performance (Deci & Ryan, 1985). Additionally, intrinsic motivation has been linked to enhanced self-esteem (Deci & Ryan, 1995) and general well-being (Ryan, Plant, & O’Malley, 1995).In comparison, much less research attention has been directed to the role of amotivation or the different types of extrinsic motivation in determining educational outcomes. This is because, up until recently, most studies have utilized unidimensional measures of motivation, which do not go beyond simple extrinsic/intrinsic distinctions (e.g., Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Orientation Scale; Harter, 1981). These studies suggest that extrinsically motivated behaviors, in general, are associated with impaired learning, poorer performance, and educational outcomes (e.g., Benware & Deci, 1984; Grolnick & Ryan, 1987). However, more recent research assessing motivational orientations in a multidimensional fashion (e.g., Academic Motivation Scale; Vallerand, Pelletier, Blais, Briere, Senecal, & Vallieres, 1992) suggests that the link between extrinsic motivation and educational outcomes is complex and depends on the type of extrinsically motivated behaviors assessed (Vallerand & Bissonnette, 1992; Vallerand, Blais, Briere, & Pelletier, 1989; Vallerand et al., 1992; Vallerand, Fortier, & Guay, 1997). In these studies, both intrinsic motivation and more autonomous or self-determined types of extrinsic motivation (identified regulation) were associated with lower dropout rates and more
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persistence, while non-self-determined types of extrinsic motivation (external, introjected) and amotivation were negatively related or not related to such outcomes. The results of such studies support the notion proposed within self-determination theory (Deci & Ryan, 1985, 1991) that extrinsic and intrinsic motivational processes are not necessarily antagonistic, rather it is the extent to which behaviors are self-determined or autonomous, as opposed to controlled from external forces, that may be important in terms of educational consequences. However, what is not clear at present is the precise nature of the relationship between different motivational orientations and academic performance. This is because studies by Vallerand and colleagues employed educational outcome measures such as perceptions of competence, concentration, time spent studying, and dropout rates, as opposed to actual academic performance. One aim of the present study was to assess the precise nature of the relationship between different motivational orientations and performance in a tertiary educational setting utilizing a prospective design, while controlling for individual’s academic aptitude prior to entering university. While considerable research effort has examined the link between motivation andcognitive (e.g., effort concentration) and behavioural consequences (e.g., persistence) in educational settings, no study has so far assessed the role of different motivational orientations in relations to other factors important for academic success such as, adjustment to university, stress, and health. There is extensive evidence to suggest that university can be stressful for many students, entailing a great deal of adjustment to a range of interpersonal, social, and academic demand and situations (e.g., Dunkel-Schetter & Lobel, 1990). Poor adjustment to university and associated difficulties has been shown to impact on physical and psychological health (Aspinwall & Taylor, 1992; Fisher & Hood, 1987) and university attrition
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(Daugherty & Lane, 1999), as well as contribute to poor academic achievement (Baker & Siryk, 1984; Sharma, 1973). Many factors thought to influence adjustment to university have been studied including age, sex, and nationality (Chataway & Berry, 1989; Hull, 1978), university entry qualifications and intellectual ability (Aspinwall & Taylor, 1992; Sternberg & Kaufman, 1998), personality variables such as shyness (Joiner, 1997), extraversion and neuroticism (Halamandaris & Power, 1999; Lu, 1990, 1994) and other vulnerability factors such as, positive and negative affect (Joiner, 1997) and social support (Halamandaris & Power, 1999). Many of these studies, however, define adjustment in relation to academic performance. While academic success is a part of adjustment to university, it also includes psychosocial aspects such as interpersonal and social adjustment. Related to this, most of these studies have tended to examine key outcome variables such as, adjustment, stress, health, or performance in relation isolation. To date, there have been few studies that have investigated the complexities of such variables simultaneously. Finally, there have been no studies of the importance of motivationalorientations in adjustment to university, levels of stress, and psychological health outcomes; yet, motivational orientations, the why of behavior (Deci & Ryan, 1985), inthis case reasons for studying, may have a significant impact on how students’ adjust to the academic, social and interpersonal demands of university, levels of stress experienced, and associated health outcomes. Indeed, motivation research in real-life domains other than education indicates that self-determined motivation is associated with positive affective outcomes such as psychological adjustment and satisfaction (Deci & Ryan, 1985, 1991). The present study was designed to allow an examination of the relationships between motivational orientations and a range of factors important for success at
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