Motivation to Learn

Three categories of adult motivation, curriculum design and classroom practice are discussed in “Thirty things we know for sure about the adult learning” article by Zemke.

Under the category ‘Motivation to learn’, point no. 5 says – “Adults, who are motivated to seek out a learning experience do so primarily because they have a use for the knowledge or skill being sought. Learning is a means to an end, not an end in itself.”

When designing course materials it is important to consider the different needs/motivations of the learner. It is easy to design for those who have high needs for achievement. They are intrinsically motivated and so they will do whatever is essential to accomplish the goal or task at hand. However, if we see the other side of the coin, it might be equally difficult to design for these learners since it is essential to create a task that is not too easy as they will not be challenged enough or not too difficult as it may discourage them and lead them to failure. Also, one must keep in mind that not all learners have high needs for achievement, so reaching out to different levels will always remain an issue.

As an instructional designer/teacher how should we conquer this issue? and how do we design course materials for children keeping the same issue in mind?


© Priya Gopalakrishnan and, 2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited.


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