Being together - factors that unintentionally undermine motivation

Maggie Hartnett, Alison St. George, Jon Dron


This paper reports on one aspect of a larger case study that explores the nature of motivation to learn in an online distance environment. The study adopts self-determination theory (SDT) as a theoretical framework and focuses particularly on the underlying concepts of autonomy and competence. These are used to investigate ways in which certain situational factors, that fail to accommodate the specific autonomy and competence needs of co-located learners, can undermine perceptions of personal agency and efficacy. This, in turn, has a detrimental effect on self-determined types of motivation including intrinsic motivation. Results from one collaborative group of learners, situated in a co-located blended learning context, are presented here. They suggest that the differing circumstances of students need to be accommodated to foster autonomous types of motivation among learners.

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Journal of Open Flexible and Distance Learningthe journal of the Flexible Learning Association of New Zealand (FLANZ).
ISSN (Print until 2010): 1179-7665 ISSN (Online): 1179-7673