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Motivation Module 10.3


Instructor Motivation Characteristics

Background Information

Goal-oriented behavior is a key ingredient of motivation and are an integral component of characteristics that represent instructor motivation. These instructor characteristics are listed next

  1. They are purposeful and intentional.

  2. They have a ready answer to questions like “What do you think is the next step for you, professionally speaking?” and “What goals do you have for your role here?”

  3. They tend to be competitive and are willing to work hard for the “win.”

  4. They constantly review theirgoals to remind themselfof what theywant to achieve and what theyneed to do in order to get there.

  5. They demonstrate goal-oriented skills that indicate theycan effectively manage their workload, complete tasks and meet deadlines in the workplace.

  6. They settargets and objectives andmeet deadlines that are appropriate. Goals that are too long-term or offer no method of measuring progress may influence behavior negatively, encouraging people to put off their work until a later date.



  • Challenge without overwhelming: an activity must be challenging at a level just above one’s current abilities. If a challenge is too hard, students will become anxious and give up; if it’s too easy, they’ll become bored. It’s crucial to find the sweet spot. Students may require a lesson to be scaffolded, breaking it down into manageable pieces, to find the right balance.

  • Create interest through making assignments relevant to students’ lives: encourage students to discover the relevance for themselves as interest in the subject is a fundamental part of flow

Support their autonomy and encourage choice. When students are given an opportunity to choose their activities and work with autonomy, they will engage more with the task.

  • Provide structure by setting clear goals and give feedback along the way: students help define their goals and remain aware of how or whether their efforts are moving toward the goal.

  • Foster positive relationships by valuing their inputs.

  • Cultivate deep concentration and foster a feeling of complete absorption by limiting distractions and interruptions.

  • Create an experience through hands-on exercises through making things, solving problems, and creating artwork. Stay away from lectures or videos.

  • Model enthusiasm for the subject, make them laugh, and speak their language.



Administer the teacher version of the Reisman Diagnostic Motivation Assessment

Motivation Theorist /Theory 

RDMA – T  Items Related to Motivation Theory 


Intrinsic motivation 

  1.  I do something for the pleasure of accomplishing a task with no expectation of outside reward such as evaluation, tenure or money. 



  1. I adapt my thinking and needs to incoming information 

  1. I adapt to my environment. 



Needs hierarchy 

  1. I am motivated when my self-confidence and feeling that I can do a specified task are satisfied. 



. Herzberg’s Motivating and Hygiene Factors 


  1. Challenging classes, recognition and responsibility give me positive satisfaction. 


  1. Status, job security, salary, fringe benefits and teaching conditions do not give me positive satisfaction but dissatisfaction results from their absence. 



Expectancy theory  


  1. I value money, promotion, time-off  and benefits. 

  1.  I am confident about what I am capable of doing. 

  1.  My perception as to whether I will actually get what I desire that was promised by my supervisor(s) affects my motivation. 

  1. My supervisor (s) ensure that promises of rewards are fulfilled and that I am aware of that. 

  1. I act in ways that bring me pleasure and avoid pain. 



Needs theory 

  1. I have a strong need to set and accomplish challenging goals. 

13. I take calculated risks to accomplish my goals. 

14. I like to receive regular feedback on my progress and achievements. 

15. I often like to work alone. 

16. I want to belong to the group. 

  1. I want to be liked. 

  1. I will often go along with whatever the rest of the faculty want to do. 

19. I favor collaboration over competition. 

20. I don't like high risk or uncertainty. 

21. I want to control and influence others. 

22. I like to win arguments. 

23.  I enjoy competition and winning. 

24.  I enjoy status and recognition. 



25.  I need to enjoyably share with another. 


26.  I need to be free and independent of others. 


27.  I need to control or influence others. 


28.  I need to be seen and heard, entertain. 


29.  I need to avoid injury, take precaution. 

30.  I need to help, console, nurse the weak. 

31.  I need for organization and neatness. 

32.  I need enjoyment and fun. 

33.  I need to form stimulating relationships. 

34. I need to be loved. 

35. I need to analyze, speculate, generalize. 

36.  My motivation influences my behavior. 

37.  My need for achievement is positively related to my occupational and financial success. 



Reinforcement theory 

Operant conditioning 

38.  I repeat behavior that leads to positive consequences and avoid behavior that has had negative effects.  


Self efficacy 

39. My perceived self-efficacy ( believe I can do something) leads me to set higher goals.  


Humanistic theory 

40 . My motivation becomes directed towards the satisfaction of others’ expectations. 



There are relationships among the effort put forth, performance and rewards  

41.  I will be motivated to exert a high level of effort when I believe there are relationships between the effort I put forth, the performance I achieve and the outcomes/rewards I receive. 

42.  My effort will improve my teaching. 

43.  My teachingwill lead to rewards. 

44.  Rewards will satisfy my individual goals. 

McGregor/ high supervision versus self-directed employees 

45.  In relation to a person refusing to learn, I am a person cheering the opportunity to learn. 


An optimal managerial style would help cultivate worker creativity, insight, meaning and moral excellence. 

46.  A supportive supervisor helps cultivate my creativity 


Focus is on the well-being of the employee needs 

47.  I believe a person may satisfy a particular need whether or not a previous need has been satisfied.  

Porter and Lawler  

Based their work on Victor Vroom’s Expectancy Theory  

48.  I have a need to perceive that I am a good teacher. 



Expands on the work of Maslow - 

when lower needs are satisfied, they occupy less of our attention, but the higher needs tend to become more important, the more we pursue 

49.  I have choices and control over my decisions.  


Deci and Ryan

Self-determination theory (SDT) 


50. I am connected to others through positive relationships. 

51. I do not believe that the best way to get students to perform tasks is to reinforce their behavior with rewards. 

52. I believe that a basic psychological need is autonomy.  



Hackman and Oldham 

Job Characteristics Theory-characteristics (i.e. skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy, and feedback) affect work 


53. I prefer a job that involves just one skill. 

54. When I receive clear, actionable information about my teaching performance, I have better understanding of what specific actions I need to take (if any) to improve. 

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