ERIC Number: ED322443
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Mar
The Prediction of Intrinsic Motivation among Early Adolescents: A Mediational Model Involving Self-Esteem and Strain.
Fenzel, L. Mickey
Maintaining an intrinsic motivation for school work is considered to be an important element in keeping adolescents in school and out of trouble. Recent research has begun to study factors that contribute to the development of an intrinsic interest in school learning. Two such important factors are self-esteem and the stressfulness of the school environment. The study reported in this paper tested a model that hypothesizes that intrinsic motivation is affected directly by perceived strain related to school and self-esteem. In addition, it is hypothesized that self-esteem mediates the effect of strain on intrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation is operationalized as a preference for academic challenge, high curiosity in school work, and an independent approach to mastery of the academic environment. Results from 84 seventh-grade middle school students provided strong support for the hypothesized model. The clear associations among strain, self-esteem, and intrinsic motivation suggest that a middle school environment that minimizes strain and enhances early adolescent self-esteem can increase a student's motivation to learn and may reap additional benefits of reducing dropout rates and promoting lifelong learning. (Author)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research on Adolescence (3rd, Atlanta, GA, March 22-25, 1990).