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A learner who is experiencing difficulty comprehending a text, for example, will be more likely to persist if he or she attributes the difficulty to something external for example, a boring text , something uncontrollable being ill , or something unstable feeling depressed that day. With repeated reframing, instructors can help learners develop attributional styles that allow learners to employ strategies and skills that are more likely to lead them to persist. Model literacy strategies.

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For instance, instructors or students might model literacy strategies or other learning behaviors. Stressing the importance of assessments and tests can lead students to adopt performance goals—goals in which a student compares his or her progress to that of others. As discussed previously, these goals are related to some problematic academic outcomes, particularly when students are preoccupied with the goal of avoiding appearing incompetent.

When students are focused on how they compare to others academically, they may use less-efficient cognitive strategies and engage in various self-handicapping behaviors. Presenting assessment results in a public manner is conducive to students adopting performance rather than mastery goals. Motivation is strengthened if students feel they can improve if they work hard at a task. Intrinsic motivation is enhanced when students are rewarded on the basis of their improvement rather than on absolute scores.

Teaching practices that could build negative internal attributions include labeling readers and writers as strong or struggling; making obvious assignments of readers and writers to working groups by skill level; and encouraging some learners to excel, while exhibiting low expectations for others. Intrinsic motivation refers to undertaking a behavior for its own sake, because one enjoys it and is interested in it, with a high degree of perceived autonomy.

Students who are more intrinsically motivated or perceive their behaviors as autonomous show better text recall and college course grades, among other positive outcomes. Intrinsic motivation is affected by whether rewards are given for performance, the degree to which the learner values the activity or task and is interested in it, and whether there are opportunities for choice about ways to participate in it.

The case against external rewards has been confirmed in a synthesis of experiments.

Teaching Adult Numeracy: Principles and Practice - كتب Google

External rewards can lead to problem-solving that is more rigid, less flexible, and slower. Large financial incentives, in particular, can lead to lower performance. State and federally funded adult literacy programs at times offer incentives for enrollment. For example, many adult education courses, which include various courses in literacy, are provided free of charge in the city of Philadelphia. By contrast, other programs provide incentives upon completion of programs or during participation.

In some instances such systems may have positive effects. For example, the state of Tennessee recently implemented a program in which students received cash incentives for participating in adult education classes; the results of a nonexperimental study suggested that the introduction of rewards was related to achievement and to passing the GED examination among welfare recipients.

If external incentives are offered, it is important to implement them in a way that does not diminish intrinsic motivation. External rewards should be presented so that students perceive them as providing information about their progress rather than as controlling their behavior.

For instance, if the reward provided by an adult education course is a job referral, then the job referral should be offered for having learned specific skills—such as being able to write a coherent essay—and not for merely having completed a set of tasks, such as completing all course exercises.


The impact of various types of incentives on persistence in adult literacy instruction is a complex issue, and further research is warranted to determine the particular circumstances under which some types of incentives might motivate certain learners. When learners believe that they have some control over their own learning, they are more likely to take on challenges and to persist with difficult tasks, compared with students who perceive that they have little control over their learning outcomes.

A con-. Providing people with choice about what activities to do and how to do them can increase intrinsic motivation, provided that the number of options offered is not overwhelming. Experiencing higher levels of perceived self-control predicts numerous positive outcomes, among them engagement in school and academic achievement.

The amount of autonomy a learner desires, however, appears to depend on how competent and self-efficacious he or she feels. If the task is new or especially challenging, an individual may appreciate having little autonomy. Building a sense of learner autonomy and control does not mean abandoning adults to learn on their own; there are a number of ways that instructors can give their students autonomy without sacrificing best practices such as providing specific feedback, offering explicit and clear modeling of strategies, and monitoring progress, all of which develop proficiencies and so support greater autonomy.

The choices allowed can be quite small and still have important effects on motivation. For example, instructors can encourage adult learners to choose whether they want to work on a reading passage individually or in small groups, choose the order of activities during a class session, or choose the genre of the next text they will read.

Providing a rationale for a task or behavior also can support perceived autonomy.

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For instance, one study found that providing a meaningful rationale for doing an uninteresting activity, acknowledging that participants might not want to do the activity, and minimizing the use of controlling language led to increased reports of autonomy. A person may persist with a task that is not initially intrinsically interesting if it is valued.

These dimensions work together; a less-than-skilled reader may nevertheless approach a difficult reading task with strong motivation to persist if the task is interesting, useful, or important to his or her identity. One study, for example, illustrated the value that adolescent readers attached to various texts because those texts taught them important life lessons or provided information necessary for fitting in with a group or social network. Although valuing an activity is important for learning in the context of compulsory education, it is vital for persistence in adult literacy education.

If adult learners develop and maintain positive values about the literacy activities they engage in—if they believe that the courses are useful, important, interesting, and worth their time—they will be more likely to persist with learning. More research is needed, however, on the approaches instructors can use to help adult and adolescent learners develop these values over time in relation to language and literacy activities they may not already value.

Adult learners are likely to put forth more effort and stay engaged in tasks they find interesting. Researchers have made a useful distinction between personal interest and situational interest, and both types have implications for motivating adult learners. Personal interest is the interest that learners bring into classrooms; it represents their longstanding preferences. When students are personally interested in topics covered in reading passages, recall of the main ideas of the passages is enhanced and subsequent motivation in reading related texts is maintained.

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Research on motivation has found value in giving readers opportunities to choose texts that connect with or expand their interests. Similarly, interest in the topic or purpose of a writing task predicts better writing performance among students in secondary schools. Instructors can use this information to select texts, tasks, and assignments that will be meaningful and engaging to learners. Situational interest is inspired by a particular event or characteristic of an experience, such as the features of a text or task.

For example, a student who has not previously expressed any interest in writing persuasive essays might be become interested if the exercise is presented in a manner that inspires interest e. Digital media are a promising way to give access to a broad range of text genres and topics to stimulate interest in reading and writing for all students, including adults. The use of digital technologies—to expose learners to genres and topics, to scaffold their learning with prompts and other supports, and to help them practice—is likely to motivate their interest in at least three ways: technologies are novel, they can ease the unpleasant parts of practice, and they can empower the learner through development of valued, relevant digital literacy skills.

The real challenge, however, is moving learners from situational to personal, or sustained, interest in a way that inspires them to persist even when they face challenging reading tasks. Cooperation or collaboration in the classroom can motivate learners to persist and attain their goals. Learning environments and experiences that help establish positive. Collaborative arrangements in which students work together to plan, draft, revise, or edit their texts can have a positive impact on the quality of their writing, but students need clear direction about what they are expected to do as they work with others.

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Opportunities to collaborate during reading and writing also can increase motivation, although more needs to be known about how to structure collaborations effectively. Adults may also become more engaged if reading and writing activities provide opportunities to work with other adults to solve real-world problems.

In addition to increasing the usefulness of literacy-based tasks and the sense of autonomy and control people have over their lives, these collective literacy activities may provide them with the community support needed to persist in developing their literacy even in the face of challenges. One challenge to the motivating effects of group work is the possibility for actual or perceived negative perceptions and actions on the basis of differences, particularly race, gender, sexual orientation, and social class.

For adults to enroll and continue participating in adult literacy courses, they must perceive the courses as being important, useful, interesting, and worth the investment of time. They must also believe they can handle the short-term consequences of spending time improving their literacy, which may include temporarily having less time available for work and family.

Effective functioning in adulthood requires selectively allocating effort toward the most important and pressing goals in accord with the opportunities available. People allocate their cognitive, emotional, and physical resources to prioritize important goals, bal-.

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  5. In this light, lack of persistence in adult literacy instruction, while appearing to be a poor choice, actually may be a self-regulated, adaptive response to the constraints of competing demands and the need for trade-offs in life. It should not be surprising, then, that the need for child care is a serious practical issue that affects participation and persistence. It is likely that programs to increase the availability of child care, particularly at no cost or at reduced rates, would facilitate the participation of many adults.

    5 Principles for the Teacher of Adults

    Stereotype threat is strong enough to disrupt performance and is typically heightened in situations in which individuals who might be connected with such a stereotype e. In one study, for example, black college students who had demonstrated high capability in other testing situations performed poorly when told that their intelligence was being measured.

    Stereotype threats have also been documented among members of other racial and ethnic groups, as well as with respect to gender and cultural differences. These findings have important implications for any adult literacy program or course in which groups come together from a variety of racial, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds, as well as for mixed gender groups.

    Indeed, stereotype threat can compromise learning in adult populations because it can be triggered by age. Awareness of stereotypes may divert attention that is needed to perform well on a task. When stereotypes are activated—in other words, when the learner is made aware of features of the stereotype that are relevant to him or her—working memory resources needed for effective performance may be diminished by distracting thoughts. Because worries about whether one will confirm a stereotype to some extent involve inner speech, interventions that steer learners toward verbalizations that help them to focus on the task at hand have been found to reduce stereotype threat.

    Although the principles outlined in this booklet are well researched with other populations and can be applied with adults, studies on motivation and adult literacy are scarce. Although principles of motivation apply across populations, learners may differ in their persistence based on age and other characteristics;. Learners can underestimate the amount of time and effort needed to learn a complex skill such as literacy. Family, peers, supervisors, and coworkers can exert important influences on motivation.

    They were also more likely to persist if they had previously engaged in learning experiences after formal schooling and had a personal goal, such as helping their children or obtaining a more lucrative job. In contrast, persistence was undermined by the demands of everyday life and low levels of social support. Your request to send this item has been completed. APA 6th ed. Note: Citations are based on reference standards.

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