Motivation

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  • 1. Improving Students’ Motivation and Academic Performance in the Classroom Myron H. Dembo, Ph.D University of Southern California [email_address] January 22, 2009
  • 2. Learning Skills and Abilities Do Not Fully Explain Academic Achievement Learning = Skill (content knowledge and learning strategies)+ Will (motivation influenced by students’ beliefs and perceptions)
  • 3. What do you like most about the students you teach?
  • 4. My Concerns About The Learning Behavior and Motivation Of My Students……
  • 5. Belief Systems
    • … influence students’ motivation and learning
    • … influence instructors’ interaction with students and classroom instruction
    • Interventions to improve learning and instruction must deal with both students and instructors’ belief systems.
  • 6. My Beliefs About Learning and Motivation
    • Do you agree or disagree with the following statements?
    • A student needs to feel some pressure to be motivated to learn.
    • Competition is a great motivator.
    • College students have a natural desire to learn.
    • Human intelligence is fixed by the time a student begins school.
    • Failure is helpful in motivating students.
    • It is the responsibility of students to know how to learn; it is the responsibility of instructors to deliver quality instruction.
  • 7. Academic Success is Determined Primarily by Individual Effort: Fact or Fiction?
    • Students lack motivation :
    • “ It is not that we as an institution are failing them. We have so many support systems around here. I just wonder how many don’t pay attention…because at orientation they hear all about the resources we offer.”
    • Students are lazy :
    • “ We have fantastic programs…But I think that if you tell the average student, ‘Here is something else you need to do,’ they don’t want to have to do something else that sounds like more work. That is the mindset a lot of student have.”
  • 8. A social cognitive model of achievement motivation (Dai et al., 1998) Effort, choice, level of activity and persistence Educational experiences, social contexts, gender role socialization, institutional policy and procedures, etc. Aptitudes, temperaments, personality, etc. Self-efficacy, values, goal orientation, attributions, self-worth, attitudes, interests, etc. Social—contextual factors Personal factors Self—Processes Achievement behaviors
  • 9. Beliefs of Instructors
    • The role of the instructor is to present the content of the course in the most concise and clear manner.
    • In addition to teaching content knowledge, the instructor has a responsibility to teach students how to learn the content and , whenever possible, assist students in overcoming obstacles in learning.
    Instructor A Instructor B
  • 10. Beliefs of Instructors
    • It is important from the first day of class to communicate to students what they need to do and the consequences of not following directions and completing assignments. Students need to understand that success in my course involves hard work.
    • It is important from the first day of class to communicate my expectations. However, I also want to communicate that my job is helping students become successful in my course. This is a belief that I try to reinforce throughout the course.
    Instructor A Instructor B
  • 11. Some students bring to class faulty beliefs and inappropriate academic behavior that limit their success in college , Some instructors misperceptions about students lead to inappropriate instructional practices.
  • 12. I don’t want to take this course. I can’t solve this problem. I messed up on the last exam because I am not smart enough to learn this material. I don’t understand this problem but I don’t want to ask a dumb question? Beliefs That Interfere With Students’ Motivation to Learn How do community college instructors or staff deal with these beliefs?
  • 13. Different Types of Motivational Problems
    • Defensive Dimitri – more motivated to avoid failure than to succeed.
    • Safe Susan – underachiever, plays it safe
    • Hopeless Henry – learned helplessness
    • Satisfied Sheila – does not seek high grades
    • Anxious Alberto – high anxiety, low self- confidence
  • 14. Key Self-Beliefs that Influence Students' Motivation to Learn
    • Personal goals
    • Value orientation
    • Self-efficacy
    • Causal attributions
    • Self-worth
    • Goal orientation
  • 15. Do students know where they are going?
  • 16. How one thinks about the self and the future Hoped-for possible self we would like to become (e.g., teacher, attorney, professional athlete) Feared possible self we wish to avoid becoming (e.g., a dropout, homeless, unemployed) Expected possible self we are fairly sure we can become (e.g., college graduate) Possible Selves
  • 17. Possible Selves Intervention Program
    • Discovering –What are my strengths and weaknesses?
    • Thinking – Who am I? What are my hopes and fears?
    • Sketching - What am I like?
    • Reflecting – What can I be?
    • Growing – How can I reach my goals?
    • Performing – How am I doing?
  • 18. Value orientation
    • Intrinsic value ( = enjoyment one gets from the activity)
    • Extrinsic value (=utility or usefulness in terms of future goal)
    • Attainment value (= importance of doing well on the task)
      • A student can have different value orientations for different tasks.
      • He or she can also have them all for the same task.
  • 19. Self-Efficacy
    • Key aspect of self-regulatory strategies
    • --Students with higher self-efficacy set higher goals and expend more effort
    • --Students with higher self-efficacy use more cognitive and metacognitive strategies and persist longer
  • 20. Attributions
    • Perceptions of causes for success or failure
    • Attribution theory explains why individuals respond differently to the same event
  • 21. Goal Orientation Mastery Orientation Performance Orientation Success defined as… Improvement, progress, mastery, innovation High grades, high performance compared with others Error viewed as… Ability viewed as… Part of the learning process, informational Developing through effort Failure, evidence of lack of ability Fixed
  • 22. Goal orientation
    • Mastery
    • “ I really get frustrated, but I want to get it right, just to challenge myself.”
    • “ I review my mistakes so I can do better next time.”
    • Performance
    • “ I want to see how good I’m compared to other students in my class.”
    • “ I always try to do well, I guess it makes me look good…builds up my reputation.”
  • 23. Goal Orientation
    • Mastery
    • Our instructor thinks mistakes are okay as long as we are learning.
    • Our instructor wants us to understand our work, not just memorize it.
    • Performance
    • Our instructor tells us how we compare to other students.
    • Only a few students do really well.
  • 24. Self-worth = ability = performance
    • Self-worth is based on ability, BUT if one can demonstrate that his or her performance does not reflect on ability, then self-worth is maintained. This is why students often use failure-avoidance strategies.
    Excuses,procrastination Covington’s Self-Worth Theory (1992)
  • 25. Why Don’t Some Students Seek Help?
    • Help seeking can imply inadequacy and threaten self-worth
    • Help seeking can expose learners to public scrutiny
    • Students often fail to adequately judge their skills level so they believe that they can succeed without assistance
    • Students incorrectly contribute their poor performance to a lack of ability rather than effort
  • 26. Students Beliefs Regarding the Use of Support Services and Possible Solutions
    • Possible Causes Based on Research
    • Students feel embarrassed and/or don’t want to feel incompetent. Thus, help seeking can threaten self-worth.
    • Students fail to adequately judge their skill level so they believe that they succeed without assistance.
    • Possible Solutions
    • Take class to visit appropriate tutoring center
    • Train tutors to understand and deal with students’ beliefs about tutoring
    • Allow students to talk about strengths during first session with tutors
    • Consider having students visit tutoring center in pairs or small groups
    • Have instructors discuss how errors help us learn and conduct error analysis lectures in class
  • 27. Real Men Don’t Ask for Directions: Male Students Attitudes Toward Peer Tutoring
    • A statement by a math tutor:
    • “ They will (women) come out and ask questions more easily: I don’t have to look for them. And the guys, I can’t read them, whether or not they’re picking it up. They just kinda sit there. The girls just seem like they’re not as worried about knowing something…where as the guys are-seem like they don’t want to let you know they haven’t picked up on something. For whatever reason, the girls get into it (a tutoring session) more”
  • 28. Real Men Don’t Ask for Directions: Male Students Attitudes Toward Peer Tutoring
    • Statements by students who failed but did not go to tutoring :
    • “ You have to say you need help and you don’t want to admit it.”
    • “ We’re afraid to ask for help because people will think we’re stupid or something like that.”
    • None of the students wanted to admit to lack of ability.
  • 29. Preparing for a Meeting with an Instructor
    • What not to do:
      • “ I don’t get it!”
    • What to do:
      • Determine what you do not understand about the material
      • Make an appointment with your TA, instructor, tutor, learning assistant
      • Review content and make a list of specific questions
      • Make summary notes soon after you leave the meeting.
  • 30. Questions to Consider…
    • Did I hear any ideas this morning that helped me to better understand my students’ motivation and behavior?
    • What are these ideas?
    • How will these ideas influence my instruction?
    • How can our community college better respond to the needs of our students?
  • 31. Helping Students Become More Self-Regulated Learners
    • Myron H. Dembo, Ph.D
    • University of Southern California
    • [email_address]
    • January 29, 2009
  • 32. What is academic self-regulation?
    • The ability of learners to control the factors or conditions affecting their learning.
    • “ Learning is not something that happens to students, it is something that happens by
    • students.” - Zimmerman
  • 33. Academic Toolbox “ It is not that students don’t have the ability to succeed. The problem is that they have not acquired all the tools necessary to learn.”
  • 34. Academic Interventions
    • Learning How to Work With Others
    • Developing the Course Syllabi
    • Seeking Help in College: Use of Academic Support Services and Meeting with instructors
    • Developing Learning and Motivational Strategies for College Success
  • 35. The Psychology of the First Day of Class
    • What are students thinking about when they first enter your class?
    • What information are they looking for?
    • What are your purposes and goals for the first day?
    • What do you do to attain these purposes and goals?
    • What do you think students say to each other when they leave your class the first day.
  • 36. “ A learning-centered syllabus requires that you shift from what you, the instructor are going to cover in your course to a concern for what information, tools, assignments, and activities you can provide to promote your students’ learning and intellectual development” (p. xiv)
  • 37. Developing a Learning-Centered Syllabus
    • A commitment how each aspect of your course will support student learning.
    • “ Teach the students you have, not the students you wish you had” (Kuh et al. 2005, p. 78).
    • In addition to providing information about the content and requirements of the course, the learning-centered syllabus, it can help you:
    • 1. Convey to your students what matters to you about learning.
    • 2. Set a tone for learning and how to learn that students will accept.
    • 3. Send a message about what students can expect from you and the campus community to support their learning during the term.
  • 38. Checklist for Developing a Syllabus
    • Instructor information
    • Student information form
    • Statement of teaching philosophy
    • Purpose of the course
    • Course description
    • Course objectives
    • Readings
    • Resources
    • Course calendar
    • Course requirements
    • Policy and expectations: Attendance, late papers, missed tests, and class behaviors
    • Policies and expectations: Academic honestly, disability access, and safety
    • Evaluation
    • Grading procedure
    • How to succeed in this course: Tools for study and learning
    From O’Brien, J. et al. (2008). The course syllabus: A learning-centered approach. San Francisco: Wiley.
  • 39. Methods of learning
    • Types of strategies
    • --rehearsal
    • copying, taking verbatim notes, reciting words and definitions
    • --elaboration
    • summarization, annotation,
    • elaborative interrogation
    • --organizational
    • visual representations
  • 40. Successful readers
      • Determine importance
      • Summarize information
      • Draw inferences
      • Generate questions
      • Monitor comprehension
  • 41. Components of monitoring comprehension
    • Knowing when you know
    • Knowing when you don’t know
    • Knowing what to do about it when you don’t know
  • 42. What is this material about?
    • The procedure is actually quite simple. First you arrange things into different groups depending on their makeup. Of course, one pile may be sufficient depending on how much there is to do. If you have to go somewhere else due to lack of facilities that is the next step, otherwise you are pretty well set. It is important not to overdo any particular endeavor. That is, it is better to do too few things at once than too many. In the short run this may not seem important, but complications from doing too many can easily arise. A mistake can be expensive as well. The manipulation of the appropriate mechanisms should be self-explanatory, and we need not dwell on it here. At first the whole procedure will seem complicated. Soon, however, it will become just another facet of life. It is difficult to foresee any end to the necessity for this task in the immediate future, but then one never can tell.
  • 43. Using Headings to Generate Questions
    • Federation vs. Confederation
    • In a federation, the national government is fully sovereign; the states may not withdraw without the consent of the national authorities; and the people create both the national government and the state governments, delegate powers to both, and may restrict both through the written constitution. The national government may act directly on the people; it can tax and draft them. In contrast, in a confederation, the states are sovereign; they may join the nation or withdraw from it at will. They delegate specified powers to national institutions and reserve all others to themselves. The national "government" is a creature of the states and can deal only with the states, not directly with their citizens.
    • Confederation is an ancient form of government; it has bound people together throughout history, from the time of the alliances of the Israelite tribes to the Renaissance and the confederacies which flourished in what is today Germany, Italy...Federalism is more modern; it was developed first in the United States and later was adopted by one-third of the countries of the world, including the Soviet Union, Brazil, India, Nigeria Mexico...
  • 44. Using Headings to Generate Questions
    • What is the difference between a Federation Versus Confederation?
    • In a federation , the national government is fully sovereign ; the states may not withdraw without the consent of the national authorities; and the people create both the national government and the state governments, delegate powers to both, and may restrict both through the written constitution. The national government may act directly on the people; it can tax and draft them . In contrast, in a confederation, the states are sovereign ; they may join the nation or withdraw from it at will. They delegate specified powers to national institutions and reserve all others to themselves. The national "government" is a creature of the states and can deal only with the states, not directly with their citizens.
    • Confederation is an ancient form of government ; it has bound people together throughout history, from the time of the alliances of the Israelite tribes to the Renaissance and the confederacies which flourished in what is today Germany, Italy... Federalism is more modern ; it was developed first in the United States and later was adopted by one-third of the countries of the world, including the Soviet Union, Brazil, India, Nigeria Mexico...
  • 45. Mirror and summary questions
    • Mirror
      • If the information in my notes was an answer to a question, what would the question be? (Unlimited quantity)
    • Summary
      • What is one major question that reflects the purpose of today’s lecture?
      • (usually no more than 1-2 per lecture)
  • 46. What is the difference between a federal and unitary government? Federalism authority is divided bet. nat. and regional level Did not exist before 1787 US has been gov. as confederacy-- auth. given to states Unitary authority solely in nat. gov . Ex. Japan and Sweden
  • 47. Types of Questions
    • What is…? (that is, “define”)
    • What is the relationship between…?
    • Compare and contrast…
    • Why?
    • How does …work?
    • What was the effect of …?
    • What is the structure and function of…?
    • Combine several small questions into one major question – turn a lower level question into a higher level question.
  • 48. Problems in Large Lecture-Based Courses
    • Some students are:
      • “ passive observers”
      • “ uninvolved” or “unengaged”
      • “ disinterested”
      • “ have low or no motivation to participate”
    • We wish they were:
      • active and engaged
      • interested
      • contributors
      • problem-solvers
  • 49. Asking Questions in Class
    • Reasons for asking questions :
    • Need to increase their understanding of course material (60%)
    • Curiosity (15%)
    • Reasons for not asking questions :
    • Anticipated negative consequences –fear of appearing unintelligent and avoiding embarrassment ( 33%)
    • Not having a question to ask or not knowing enough to ask a question (28%)
    • Too busy taken notes or didn’t want to interrupt the lecture (15%)
  • 50. Strategies to Improve Student Involvement During Lecture
    • Show students what good notes looks like
    • Teach students how to read content textbook
    • Ask students for their summary question from the last lecture
    • Use cooperative learning—two students go over their notes, the first students would paraphrase and explain the first page of notes. Then they would switch and the second member of the pair would go over the next section
    • Stop the lecture and allocate 10 minutes of time for students to work in learning groups to review the material and generate a question that would focus on some material they may not understand.
    • Use study buddies
  • 51. Strategies to Improve Student Involvement During Lecture
    • Ask students to turn in a question about the readings in a box in from of the lecture room.
    • Plan your lecture around a series of questions that the lecture answers
    • Turn-to-your partner discussions. Divide the lecture into 10 to 15 minute segments. Use different discussion tasks:
    • Summarize the answer to the question being discussed
    • Solve a problem
    • Give a reaction to the theory, concepts, or information being
    • presented.
    • Elaborate the material being presented.
    • Predict or explain
    • Attempt to resolve the conceptual conflict the presentation has aroused.
    • Hypothesize answers to the question being posed.
  • 52. Strategies to Improve Student Involvement During Lecture
    • U se a personal response system
    • Instructor shows a PowerPoint slide which poses a question to students. Students select an answer using their clickers, a small, portable device that uses infrared or radio frequency technology to transmit and record student responses to questions.
    • The answers are collected by a USB receiver (RF receiver) and tabulated directly within Powerpoint via Turning Technologies TurningPoint system applications.
    • Within seconds, the class can view a histogram of responses and instructors can save this data for further analysis and/or grading.
    • Currently, several software companies are launching software where you use your cell phone to register your answer choice – so the trend is moving away from hardware (i.e., the real clicker) completely.
  • 53. When it comes to academics, I am mostly a.. ….
  • 54. Promoting Effective Helping Behavior in Groups
    • Effective help seekers:
    • Ask precise questions
    • Persist in seeking help
    • Apply the explanations received
    • Effective help givers:
    • Provide detailed explanations and opportunities for help recipients to apply the help received
    • Monitor student understanding
  • 55. Some Comments By Students Working in Collaborative Groups
    • “ I like the group sessions, it depends on a lot of communication and that’s something my group does well in.”
    • “ We worked well because we taught one another what we knew. So if someone got something wrong and another one got it right then we would teach one another.”
    • “ Group work is working well I am learning what I do wrong and how to correct it.”
    • “ We helped each other figure out how to solve the equations and communicated well.”
    • “ I like this group problems together.”
    • “ We all participated in getting the answer. Those that didn’t understand – was explained to them.”
  • 56. Questions to consider…
    • What changes can I and my department make to improve students’ academic performance?
    • How do I (we) implement these changes?
    • What are the next steps?