New review discusses the complex reciprocal relation between learning and motivation

We’ve known for a long time now that it’s not as simple as stating that motivation will lead to learning or vice versa. TuongVan Vu and colleagues try to clarify this better in a new review paper (h/t Greg Ashman for pointing me to this paper).

The researchers introduce a nice circular diagram summarising the present knowledge about learning and motivation and elements that can influence this from outside. Also, note that it’s more complex than the self-determination theory by Deci and Ryan, although you can recognize elements.

About this motivation-achievement cycle:

The motivation-achievement cycle, a summary model of motivation-achievement interactions, capturing some of the commonalities within prominent theories of academic motivation. Blue boxes denote motivation constructs, green (dotted) arrows behavioral intermediaries (quality of learning and quantity of learning), and yellow boxes and arrows denote achievement-related constructs (flow and perceived performance). Gray arrows denote outside influences that are themselves not part of motivation-achievement interactions (e.g., cultural and social influences that affect both expectancies and values)

They also acknowledge that there is still a lot to discover:

We therefore present a research agenda where we identify theoretical and methodological challenges that could inspire further understanding of the reciprocal relationship between motivation and achievement as well as inform future interventions. Specifically, the research agenda includes the recommendation that future research considers (1) multiple motivation constructs, (2) behavioral mediators, (3) a network approach, (4) alignment of intervals of measurement and the short vs. long time scales of motivation constructs, (5) designs that meet the criteria for making causal, reciprocal inferences, (6) appropriate statistical models, (7) alternatives to self-reports, (8) different ways of measuring achievement, and (9) generalizability of the reciprocal relations to various developmental, ethnic, and sociocultural groups.


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