Assessment 3: Attribution Style and Motivation
Learning Theory in Psychology
Motivation is an important concept in psychology. It provides insight into why we may behave the way we do. Motivation is an internal process that reflects the desire to achieve certain goals. Motivation can be divided into two basic types: intrinsic motivation and extrinsic
Locus of Control is a concept that was developed in the early 1950’s by Julian Rotter. The Locus of Control plays a role in personality that refers to an individual’s perception on the events that has occurred throughout their lives (Schunk, 2016). Asking myself the question, “Do I control my own destiny or is it controlled by external forces?” For example: An external force such as “God”. Like someone saying, “Thank you God I got the job” vs saying, “I worked hard and I got the job”.
Locus of Control play a role in helping students with difficulties in learning and attitude change being that reinforcements dictate the attitude of individuals long-term (Rotter, 1966). For students to sustain self-efficacy and the usefulness of learning performance, internal and external factors of locus of control will contribute to that. For example an individuals with internal locus of control when focusing on abilities tend to choose an activity so they can display their abilities vs individuals that display external locus of control tend to prefer activities in which they can show the role of chance on their lives (Rotter, 1966). An individual’s motivation refers to a desire that contributes to and explain behavioral changes. For example: Acting on or within a person to initiate biological behavior that’s either intrinsic: internal Factors or extrinsic: external Factors. Intrinsic behaviors are influenced in the sense of personal satisfaction of performing the activity itself. Such as me being in college because I like learning new things to expand my knowledge. Extrinsic behaviors are influenced by the idea of receiving something for it. Such as me taking my sister to the store because she will pay me money to do it or social incentives such as praise and attention from other people (Rotter, 1966).
Overall, with Locus of Control individuals are classified into two groups, Internals and Externals (Schunk, 2016). Internals believe that they can control events in their lives and Externals relate events, situations or failures to factors that doesn’t relate to them (Schunk, 2016).
Metacognition is known to be the awareness and knowledge that a person has and uses that knowledge as a way of thinking as they evaluate their thinking processes (Schunk, 2016). Self-regulation is when the learner wishes to control and monitor their learning (Schunk, 2016). Within self-regulation, it allows the learner to set goals and implement strategies to conquer the tasks at hand and in turn the learner feels accomplished as the learnt task is completed (Schunk, 2016). Both theories strategically use approaches that effectively comprehends how a learner learns.
There is an assumption of both theories that suggests that for a learner to acquire new knowledge in an unfamiliar environment, they are required to use a sufficient amount of cognitive effort. However, within both theories they explore the acquiring and evaluation of information learned from the learner being that it’s a constant view of learners being able to control how they learn (Schunk, 2016). Both theories agree that students can benefit from setting goals for themselves, but with self-regulation the learner use their abilities to control their level of motivation and therefore both theories can’t effectively function without the other (Schunk, 2016).
Self-Regulation Experience Example: One thing I’ve observed about myself is that when I’m able to study and complete tasks in a quiet environment when no one is around, I’m able to complete the tasks more quickly and effectively than when it isn’t quiet.
Metacognition Experience Example
When I learned another language, Spanish for example, in my learning process I was able to recall information from my previous experience, such as in high school, to help me conquer learning the new things I needed to for me to continue learning. In doing it this way, my internal responses such as emotions served as my personal feedback in helping me understand my progress and expectations. However, it’s critical to have a positive attitude and feelings with learning within metacognition.
According to Schunk (2014), Atkinson’s Self-Worth Theory suggests that behavior results from emotional conflicts of success and failure. For example: Taking a difficult course that’s anticipated to be satisfying for the individual or the thought of the individual failing due to the anxiety that’s presented to them (Schunk, 2014). With this theory, it assumes that success is of value and that failure should be avoided to prevent the individual from feeling like they are not capable of being successful. Individuals can avoid this feeling by failing purposely, however in most cases individuals can be successful if given a proper timeline to do their best work or if they don’t have other responsibilities such as taking care of their kids or working crazy hours (Schunk, 2014). There are motivational patterns such as task and ego that influences the motivation in individuals. Task involvement reflects learning as the goal and how valuable it is. Ego involvement reflects the idea of an individual that avoids looking incompetent (Nicholls, 1983, 1984).
The Self-Worth Theory would be useful to me as a counselor as it would allow me to help individuals that struggle with the idea of feeling incapable of being successful in life. As learned, some people feel that they are in control of all things that they are faced with, however that is not the case always. As a professional, it would be my duty to motivate, encourage and inspire individuals no matter what the case may be. In this world today, not all people have the same outlets to achieve greatness. I would also offer alternative methods of perceptions and behaviors that may cause them to have low self-efficacy (Schunk, 2014). This allow one to have a cohesive understanding of individuals I help and not judge them due to the many biases that most of us go through.
The main argument and difference between intrinsic and extrinsic motivation contends that intrinsic motivation is derived from a self-concept, core beliefs, internal need and development opposed to extrinsic motivators which can undermine these motivations
Rotter, J. B. (1966). Rotter’s Internal-External Control Scale. Psyctests, doi:10.1037/t01671-000
Rotter, J.B. (1966). Generalized Expectances for Internal Versus External Control
of Reinforcement. Psychological Monographs, 80 (1), 1-28
Schunk, D. H. (2016). Learning theories: An educational perspective (7th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson. ISBN: 9780134013480.
Nicholls, J. G. (1983). Conceptions of ability and achievement motivation: A theory and its implications for education. In S. G. Paris, G. M. Olson, ; H. W. Stevenson (Eds.), Learning and motivation in the classroom (pp. 211–237). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
Nicholls, J. G. (1984). Achievement motivation: Conceptions of ability, subjective experience, task choice, and performance. Psychological Review, 91, 328–346.