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Motivating Students

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Motivating Students

  1. 1. Motivating Students Encouraging self-motivated, independent learners
  2. 2. <ul><li>Some students seem naturally enthusiastic about learning, but many need or expect their instructors to inspire, challenge, and stimulate them: &quot;Effective learning in the classroom depends on the teacher's ability ... to maintain the interest that brought students to the course in the first place&quot; (Ericksen, Memo to the Faculty, 1978). Whatever level of motivation your students bring to the classroom will be transformed, for better or worse, by what happens in that classroom. </li></ul>How the Teacher Motivates the Student
  3. 3. General Strategies <ul><li>Capitalize on students' existing needs. </li></ul><ul><li>Make students active participants in learning. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask students to analyze what makes their classes more or less motivating. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Incorporate Motivational Instructional Behaviors <ul><li>Hold high but realistic expectations for your students. </li></ul><ul><li>Help students set achievable goals for themselves. </li></ul><ul><li>Tell students what they need to do to succeed in your course. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid creating intense competition among students. </li></ul><ul><li>Be enthusiastic about your subject. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Structure the Course to Motivate Students <ul><li>Work from students' strengths and interests. </li></ul><ul><li>When possible, let students have some say in choosing what will be studied. </li></ul><ul><li>Increase the difficulty of the material as the semester progresses. </li></ul><ul><li>Vary your teaching methods. </li></ul>
  6. 6. De-emphasize Grades <ul><li>Emphasize mastery and learning rather than grades. </li></ul><ul><li>Design tests that encourage the kind of learning you want students to achieve. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid using grades as threats. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Respond to Students’ Work <ul><li>Give students feedback as quickly as possible. </li></ul><ul><li>Reward success. </li></ul><ul><li>Introduce students to the good work done by their peers. </li></ul><ul><li>Be specific when giving negative feedback. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid demeaning comments. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid giving in to students' pleas for &quot;the answer&quot; to homework problems. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Motivating Students to Do the Reading <ul><li>Assign the reading at least two sessions before it will be discussed. </li></ul><ul><li>Assign study questions. </li></ul><ul><li>Have students turn in brief notes on the day's reading that they can use during exams. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask students to write a one-word journal or one-word sentence. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask non-threatening questions about the reading. </li></ul><ul><li>Use class time as a reading period. </li></ul><ul><li>Prepare an exam question on un-discussed readings. </li></ul><ul><li>Give a written assignment to those students who have not done the reading. </li></ul>
  9. 9. In Conclusion <ul><li>Research has shown that good everyday teaching practices can do more to counter student apathy than special efforts to attack motivation directly (Ericksen, 1978). Most students respond positively to a well-organized course taught by an enthusiastic instructor who has a genuine interest in students and what they learn. Thus, activities you undertake to promote learning will also enhance students' motivation. </li></ul>