University of New Hampshire
Mentor: Randall Schroeder, M.Ed., Center for Academic Resources
The Most Efficient Interventions for Unmotivated High School Students
Students who do poorly in school can often be attributed to lack of motivation rather than lack of ability. This research will address effective interventions for unmotivated high school students. In the first part of the study, definitions of motivation and other important terms that are closely related to motivation will be explored, including intrinsic versus extrinsic motivations, self-regulated learners, acquired motives and self-esteem. This work will elucidate some of the common characteristics and attitudes often found in unmotivated students. and address a key question of motivation: Is motivation inherent when we are born, or does it develop through learning or growing? Various interventions that can be used to help motivate students will be introduced, compared and evaluated.
The methodology of this research will include interviews with a diverse group of educational professionals including school counselors, teachers, therapists, social workers, adventure program specialists, and, most important, the students themselves. The focus of the interviews is to find out the effectiveness and implications of these interventions. The findings of this research should provide insight for secondary school professionals, which could help them approaching and assisting unmotivated high school students.