Motivation and instruction

Deborah Stipek
Year of Publication: 
In D. Berliner & R. Calfee (Eds.)
Handbook of educational psychology
Macmillan: New York

This chapter examines the implications of motivation theory and research for designing instructional programs to maximize students’ motivation. A motivated student is conceptualized as someone who is actively engaged in the learning process. Students who are engaged approach challenging tasks eagerly, exert intense effort using active problem-solving strategies, and persist in the face of difficulty. Motivated students focus on developing understanding and mastering skills; they are enthusiastic and optimistic; and they take pleasure in academic tasks and pride in their achievements. Students who are not motivated are passive; they exert little effort and give up easily. When they exert effort it is for extrinsic reasons, such as to avoid punishment or obtain some reward unrelated to the task itself. They do not enjoy school tasks and avoid them whenever they can.

APA Citation

Stipek, D. (1996). Motivation and instruction. In D. Berliner & R. Calfee (Eds.), Handbook of educational psychology (pp. 85-113). Macmillan: New York.