Wednesday, June 11, 2008

There are many good reasons for pursuing a college degree. Yet many of us are not sure why we are. Without these reasons, we are unmotivated. And if we are not motivated to be here, our ability to learn is compromised. Learning of one kind or another occurs throughout our lives. It started at the moment our lives began and will continue until the day we die. For us learning is innate, and we are compelled to do it whether we are aware of its occurrence or not. Yet while we are born with the ability and the necessity to learn, we are not necessarily born with the ability to learn in specific, formal settings. A university is an institution of formal learning, and to be successful at such an institution like Penn State we must learn to adapt our natural predispositions to learning to its requirements. This adaptation is often times difficult, especially considering the amount of work necessary to be successful, and requires motivation.
Motivation in a general sense is that which influences the arousal, selection, direction and maintenance of all human behavior. …Students require some form of stimulus to activate, provide direction for, and encourage persistence in their study and learning efforts. Motivation is this energy to study, to learn and achieve and to maintain these positive behaviors over time. Motivation is what stimulates students to acquire, transform and use knowledge (Groccia, 1992, p. 62).
According to Groccia (1992) “People study and learn because the consequences of such behavior satisfy certain internal and/or external motives” (p. 62).Let’s begin with your motivation to attend Penn State. Why are you at Penn State?

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