The Case Study Of Russell Esky's Attribution Theory

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Problem Statement
Russell Esky’s lack of knowledge about student motivation, pertaining to intrinsic/extrinsic motivational strategies, socio-cultural teaching approaches, humanistic teaching approaches, and the attribution theory, negatively impacts his classroom learning environment. This paper will discuss the attribution theory of motivation and its relation to the case scenario.
Attribution Theory of Motivation Bernard Weiner, an educational psychologist, introduced the idea of the attribution theory of motivation to academic learning. He believed successes and failures are attributed to the locus, stability, and controllability of an individual. These three dimensions make up the attribution theory and describe how individuals’ actions
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Esky and Kevin interaction. Kevin is having struggles with multiplying problems with decimals. Mr. Esky shares how this is strange because they worked the first three problems together successfully and earlier in the week, Kevin worked example problems correctly. Kevin attributes those successes to luck and claims he didn’t even remember how to work those previous problems. Mr. Esky attempts to encourage Kevin by explaining he could do it, he just had to apply the right formula. He continued to assist Kevin with the problem and attempted to leave him to work independently, but Kevin requested that he help him get started with the next problem and Mr. Esky obliged. In connection with the attribution theory, teachers play a key role in their reactions to students’ successes or failures. These reactions directly influence the attributions students’ make. Teachers need to help students make adaptive attributions to unstable causes when a failure occurs. For example, it is adaptive to contribute failure to inappropriate strategy use (Linnenbrink & Pintrich, 2002). In this situation, Mr. Esky used this adaptive approach minimally when he told Kevin he could work the problems if he applied the right formula. This should have encouraged Kevin that the failure was not because of him, but because of inappropriate strategy use. Therefore, if he learned to use the correct formula, he can work future problems successfully. On the other hand, this message was overshadowed because of Mr. Esky’s consistent help, which gave off a more prevalent message that Kevin’s abilities independently were inadequate to even try to work a problem alone. Although Kevin asked for Mr. Esky’s help, he would have benefited from Mr. Esky stepping away after working that first problem with him so that he could realize his capabilities. Instead, he felt like unless Mr. Esky was standing over him with consistent support, he would not get any problems correct. Mr. Esky

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