ERIC Number: ED311628
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Motivation, Competition, and the Goals of Gifted Education: New Directions for Investigation.
Clinkenbeard, Pamela R.
The paper examines the relationship between the educational environment and the gifted student's motivation. It argues for less use of competition as a motivator, and suggests future research directions. The argument against employing competition as a motivator is based upon the premise that development, cognitive, social-emotional, and moral, should be the aim of education for all students and that following this goal will lead toward maximum use of the gifted student's intellectual powers. Individualistic and competitive goal structures correspond to the psychological states of task-involvement and ego-involvement. The competitive atmosphere fosters a state of ego involvement in which feelings of self-competence depend on being able to beat others, whereas the individualistic environment induces task involvement in which learning is seen as an end in itself and feelings of competence are found in personal improvement. It is possible that competition may serve not as a motivator but as a distraction when a gifted student is working on an appropriately challenging task. Research is needed on the impact of competition on achievement and on the impact of gender differences on the motivating force of competition. (DB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A