ERIC Number: ED234320
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
A Study of Extrinsic vs. Intrinsic Motivation in College Students.
Elbel, Jacquelyn; Horton, Irene P.
Attribution theorists have argued that if an intrinsically motivated activity is extrinsically reinforced, the activity will be devalued and extinguished when the reward is removed. Hypothesizing that activities performed for their instrumental outcome are valued less than activities not so externally oriented, and that activities performed for their instrumental outcome are primarily concerned with satisfying Maslow-type lower needs, a questionnaire was developed to measure activities and their rated values. College students (N=41) completed the questionnaire and participated in an interview to determine the perceived utility (primary reason for engaging in the activity) and the level of need the activity satisfied. Statistical analyses showed that the majority of responses for instrumental activities served the more basic needs of the Maslow hierarchy, while the majority of responses for intrinsic motivations served the higher order needs, mostly self-actualization. The hypothesis that activities performed for their instrumental outcome would be devalued was not supported, although the means tended toward that direction. (WAS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Extrinsic Motivation; Intrinsic Motivation
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the Southwestern Psychological Association (29th, San Antonio, TX, April 21-23, 1983).