Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation in College Students Essay

683 Words Apr 5th, 2012 3 Pages
Let’s take a closer look at how motivation ties in with these intrinsic and extrinsic theories for motivation. It is clear that motivation is one of the most prominent driving forces by which humans pursue and ultimately achieve their goals. Motivation, quite simply, is rooted in the human instinct to minimize pain and maximize pleasure. The characteristics of such a basic theory would usually be about as clear cut as they come. However, motivation relies heavily on one’s personal psychology as well as specific situations. As noted before in the survey, it also has two very distinct and different sides to it, those being intrinsic motivation and extrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation is defined as a type of motivation that is …show more content…
Although they are both effective ways of working toward a goal, extrinsic motivation does so not because one wants to, but simply to reach an intended outcome. Extrinsically motivated people are often driven by external forces. Again, going back to the survey, Creighton students most often stated that obligations and responsibilities were the most prominent external motivators for them. This is interesting, because most other studies show that rewards such as money or grades, and the fear of punishment are generally the most common extrinsic motivators. According to research done by Harvard University in 2004, there seem to be three basic types of learning styles, each of which respond to different types of motivation more than others. The three learning styles are deep learners, strategic learners, and surface learners. Deep learners are very intrinsically motivated students who have a genuine passion for learning and mastering new material. Strategic learners tend to be primarily motivated by rewards, mostly of external nature. They react well to competition and generally make good grades, but do so for reasons other than a genuine interest in the subject. These students are those who do just enough to get by, but often forget the material shortly after. Surface learners are motivated by the desire to avoid failure. Like strategic learners, these people often do just enough to get by, but don’t overachieve

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