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‘What's In It For Me?’: Increasing Content Relevance to Enhance Students' Motivation

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‘What's In It For Me?’: Increasing Content Relevance to Enhance Students' Motivation

Abstract

Frequently, students are skeptical of the significance of the material taught to them in the classroom. A question they often pose to teachers is “What's in it for me?” Making content relevant to students' personal and career goals addresses these concerns. A scale to measure content relevance in the classroom was developed, factor analyzed, and determined to be a valid and reliable unidimensional instrument. Making content relevant to students' personal and career goals was hypothesized to be a factor, in addition to immediacy, that increases students' state motivation. Relevance was found to be associated with state motivation to study. In addition, relevance accounted for a significant amount of variance in state motivation after taking verbal and nonverbal immediacy into consideration.
... 9-17;Lage et al., 2000) and gamification (Kapp, 2012) on student learning experience in management subject area. Along with the blend of different learning approaches, it is equally essential to establish relevance between course content and students' background (Keller, 1983;Frymier & Shulman, 1995). ...
... In education, the relevance is the student's perception of whether the course instruction/content satisfies personal needs, personal goals, and/or career goals (Keller, 1983). Although previous experience and knowledge influence the students' perception, presentation of the content also affect content relevance to students' mind (Frymier & Shulman, 1995). The ARCS (attention, relevance, confidence, satisfaction) model by Keller (1983Keller ( , 1987 describes the influences of different factors on students' motivation to study, and in Keller's model, teachers must first gain students' attention using different strategies such as introducing innovative learning approaches or tools, and then emphasizing adaptable tasks or content that satisfies their needs. ...
... Accounting, Finance, Marketing, and Management. Therefore, the question of "what's in it for me?" as originally coined by Frymier & Shulman (1995) appeared within the experimental group. Castedo et al. (2019) highlighted that the FL approach works better when such experience combines theory and practice rather than just practice alone. ...
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Past studies have shown the efficacy of flipped classrooms and gamification learning approaches. However, we know little about the blend of these learning approaches. This study compares the effectiveness of gamified flipped classrooms (GFC) to traditional classroom (TC) learning ap-proaches. We study two different undergraduate cohorts over six-week course delivery in man-agement and IT in a university in UAE. We collected data through an online survey from 105 students (control and experimental) and performed interviews with two focus groups of students. We identified the GFC learning approach as more efficient in terms of complexity of the tech-nique, task orientation, student engagement, satisfaction, knowledge, and learning motivation. We also found a slight difference between the two approaches in terms of student skill devel-opment. Surprisingly, the control group achieved better course learning outcomes through TC than the experimental group using GFC because of perceived content relevance. The study pro-vides additional evidence on the relevance of employing mixed learning approaches in class-rooms, not to rely on one approach of university lecturers and learning enhancement units solely.
... To further investigate the aforementioned affective learner characteristics, the CI²GT is to be complemented with additional scales from the literature. In this regard, we understand 1. relevancy of content as a "student perception of whether the course instruction/content satisfies personal needs, personal goals, and/or career goals" (Frymier & Shulman, 1995) 2. (Ability) self-concept as mental representations of persons about themselves (Baumeister, 1999), 3. subject interest as "characterized by intrinsic desire to understand a particular topic that persists over time" (Schraw et al., 2001, p. 24), and 4. situational interest as a "spontaneous interest that appears to fade as rapidly as it emerges and is almost always place-specific" (Schraw et al., 2001, p. 24). ...
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... Engaging features relate to formal structural task characteristics such as novelty, complexity, or ambiguity [32], as well as to personally relevant or meaningful contents with which the learner can identify. Regardless of the school subject, student's interest can be increased if the materials or lessons are relevant for students' needs and goals [33] or related to their life themes, experiences, or specific interests [26,27,[34][35][36][37][38][39]. ...
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A motivational downturn in mathematics during secondary school has been well documented for many students. As a way to address this, creating personally relevant tasks is supposed to increase students’ motivation for mathematical tasks. According to recent research, topics relating to affiliation, achievement, and power are personally relevant for young people. Prior research showed that motive imagery in school tasks increases students’ task-related intrinsic value and success expectancies. The present study examined the effect of motive topics in word problems on students’ task performance. We contextualized mathematical tasks either with affiliation, achievement, and power topics or with neutral topics not related to motive topics. The tasks were comparable regarding their mean word count, text, and mathematical complexity. In three experimental studies ( N 1 = 56, N 2 = 63, N 3 = 62), the students solved four tasks for each motive topic and neutral tasks, respectively. The dependent variables were task performance, intrinsic values, and expectancies of success. Repeated measures analyses of variance with the four-level, within-subjects factor motive imagery revealed positive effects of motive imagery in word problems on students’ task performance. This was particularly true for achievement-related tasks compared with neutral tasks. The results also indicated slightly positive effects for affiliation-related word problems on students’ performance. In addition, the intrinsic value for affiliation-related (Experiment 1) and achievement-related tasks (Experiment 3) was higher than for neutral tasks. Power imagery did not affect students’ task performance; it negatively affected students’ intrinsic value compared with neutral tasks. Task-related success expectancies were not influenced by motive imagery. The present study replicates and extends previous findings that indicate that tasks referring to affiliation and achievement imagery are more appealing to students and can benefit their performance.
... Student perceptions play a significant role in empowering or constraining engagement in coursework and can affect learning outcomes (Shertzer & Schuh, 2004). In didactic courses, students who perceive course content as useful, helpful, interesting, and aligned with their goals may be more motivated and engaged than those who do not (Frymier & Shulman, 1995). In addition, ensuring the psychological wellbeing of students in these courses is imperative, especially for trauma survivors. ...
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... After selecting the appropriate graduate students, they should know they are encouraged to discuss during the seminar teaching. For teachers, they are suggested to address graduate students by name because students are more attentive when they feel they are not anonymous [27]. Teachers can also develop an instruction manual for graduate students to help them know each other. ...
Chapter
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