Motivation provides us with energy to purse outcomes. The energy may come from an inside source or an outside source. These sources can be defined as either extrinsic or intrinsic motivation (Rodgers & Loitz, 2009). Extrinsic motivation “lies outside of the individual and the task being performed”, whereas, intrinsic motivation “lies within the individual and task” (Ormond, 2008). The task is found to be enjoyable and worthwhile alone.
There are several advantages and disadvantages to each type of motivation.
Advantages of Intrinsic Motivation:
Focuses on the subject rather than the reward or punishment
Disadvantages of Intrinsic Motivation:
Slow to change the behavior
Requires lengthy preparation and special attention
A variety of approaches may be needed to motivate students
Advantages of Extrinsic Motivation:
Quickly changes behaviors
Requires little effort or preparation
Requires little knowledge of the student
Disadvantages of Extrinsic Motivation:
Provides distraction from learning
Difficulty in determining appropriate rewards and punishment
Ineffective after a long period of time
Once the reward is removed, motivation is lost
Both motivational types can influence the learning behavior of a student. Research suggests that extrinsic rewards can have a negative impact on intrinsic motivation; therefore, extrinsic methods should be used carefully and sparingly (Vanderbilt University: Center for Teaching, 2011).
ReferencesRodgers, W., & Loitz, C. (2009). The role of motivation in behavior change. ACSM’s Health & Fitness
Journal, 13 (1), 7. doi: 10.1249/FIT.0b013e3181916d11
Vanderbilt University: Center for Teaching. (2011). Motivating students. Retrieved from