Extrinsic Motivation Theories

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2.1 A Brief History of Motivation Research To support the fact that motivation is an important issue and there have been much research conducted; this subchapter offers a brief overview of motivation definition , types of motivation and importance in second language learning. Also, it will briefly touch on the factors that affect motivation in second language learning.

2.1.1Definitions of Motivation There are many different definitions of motivation, especially in language learning. Harmer (1991, p.3) explains the meaning of motivation as the “internal drive” that pushes somebody to do something. If we think that our goal is worth doing and attractive for us, then we try to reach that goal; this is called “the action driven by motivation”.
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Extrinsic motivation refers to a desire to get a reward and avoid punishment. It emphasizes external need to persuade the learner to take part in learning activity (Arnold, 2000, p. 14), such as homework, grade, or doing something to please teachers. Both integrative and instrumental motivations are also grouped under the branch of the extrinsic motivation (Harmer, 1991, p. 4) as extrinsic motivation is based on external outcomes such as rewards and punishment. This motivation could bring a negative impact to the students, because with extrinsic motivation, students do not learn with their strong intention or will but they study it because they are pushed by the interest in the rewards or the punishment. When a student is learning because he is promised rewards or because he wants the rewards, he will be highly motivated to come to classes and learn and achieve the goal that is set for him. But when these rewards are taken away, or sometimes even if they do not see any punishment, the student will not be interested in coming to class and learn the language any…show more content…
4), four factors can be dangerous to the learners’ motivation, are the following: 1. Physical condition which means the atmosphere in class. For example if student have to study in the bad lighting classroom , overcrowded with too many students , have to look at the small board, or in the unpleasant smell classroom, they can lose their motivation or their motivation in learning will be lowered. 2. Method of teaching which refers to the way that students are taught must affect their motivation. Whenever the learners feel bored at the teacher’s method, their motivation would likely be lost or gradually decreased. As he said, “If the students loses confidence in the method, they will become de-motivated” (Harmer, 1991, p. 5) 908 3. The teachers as the most powerful variable of motivation and de-motivation, can become a major part in de-motivating the learners. 4. Success refers to the appropriate level of challenge designed by the teachers. If the difficulty of work and activity is too high or too low, it can lead students to a de-motivated situation in learning. As Harmer pointed out, to give high challenge activities may have a negative effect on motivation. Students can also equally be de-motivated by too low level of challenge. From Krashen’s affective filter hypothesis (as cited in Lightbown and Spada, 1999, p. 39), emotional states such as tiredness, depression, boredom, etc obstruct the learning process of the students. Anxiety becomes a
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