WEEK 9: INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES 3 MOTIVATION
Overview What is motivation ? How do instinct and drive-reduction approaches to motivation differ? What are the main theories of motivation? How do I set effective goals to motivate myself?
What Motivates You? What made you get out of bed this morning and attend this class ? Was it because you are… ◦ Motivated to learn about…. Motivation? Perhaps motivated about psychology in general? ◦ Motivated to participate in social activities during or outside of this class (e.g. engage in after-lecture activities) ◦ Motivated to perform well in this subject and this course? ◦ Motivated to ensure that you do not miss out on important information regarding this class? ◦ Motivated to avoid your parents’ complaints about you not attending lectures? We use the term ‘motivation’ to describe a certain drive – an intention to act to accomplish a certain outcome.
Defining Motivation Motivation is the process by which actions or activities are: ◦ Started ◦ Directed ◦ Continued … so that physical or psychological needs or wants are met . There are two broad forms of motivation: Extrinsic Motivation • Action performed because it leads to an outcome separate or external to the individual performing it. • E.g. Performing well for a psychology exam for the promise of reward . Intrinsic Motivation • Action performed because it is intrinsically or personally rewarding . • Performing well on a psychology exam because you are deeply interested in the subject.
Instinct Theories of Motivation Instinct theories of motivation suggest that motivation is instinctive . This means that individuals act based on an innate instinct to satisfy certain needs. Instincts are biologically determined and innate patterns of behaviour that exist in both people in animals . ◦ The instinct to meet one’s need for survival , food and reproductive goals are some examples of such instincts. Evolutionary psychology, for instance, suggests that the two main instinctive drives are for survival and reproduction .
Drive Reduction Theories of Motivation According to drive reduction theories, motivation is a response directed towards restoring equilibrium – a comfortable level of existence . This comfortable level of existence is referred to as homeostasis . Behaviours arise from certain physiological needs that drives the individual towards satisfying that need. ◦ For instance, thirst and hunger drive an individual to find water and food to ensure that the body is in equilibrium. When the need is satisfied , there is lowered tension and arousal . However, people can also be motivated to act to reduce physiological distress (e.g. loneliness ), or meet certain psychological wants (e.g. companionship ).