What Does It Take To Motivate Students?

At the very core, what does it take to motivate students?

Recent experiments in gamification, monetary rewards, and other task-based reward systems are designed to motivate in the short-term. Some argue that long-term learning is more affected by intrinsic motivation, rather than extrinsic rewards.

To activate intrinsic motivation, teachers should incorporate three important ideas into lessons:

  1. Autonomy: let students experiment and learn for themselves.
  2. Relatedness: give students goals and help them achieve them.
  3. Competence: adapt lessons and targets to student abilities.

Of course, experienced teachers already understand these ideas, but it doesn’t hurt to refocus efforts once in a while.

Source: The secret to motivation? It lies within – The Globe and Mail.

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