ERIC Number: ED341920
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Jun
Incentives and Education. A Series of Solutions and Strategies. Number 4.
Seoane, Myriam; Smink, Jay
Incentives are commonly used by individuals and organizations to initiate change. Incentives are now being employed in education to keep students in school. In an attempt to determine the effectiveness of programs that utilize incentives, an analysis was conducted of the programs in the National Dropout Prevention Center's Focus Database that incorporate incentives as a major component. Analysis of the program profiles revealed that, although incentives differ according to intent, they can be grouped into four basic categories: education completion, academic achievement, attendance, and personal improvement. Incentives not only differ in their intent, but they also vary according to the target group at whom they are aimed. Students are the most obvious focus, however, parents, teachers, and even neighborhoods are being targeted. Despite the popularity of their use, there are many who do not support the use of incentives in academic settings. These educators believe that the use of extrinsic motivation undermines the student's intrinsic motivation. Incentives are simply one method, which if used appropriately, can encourage and motivate students. They should not replace verbal encouragement from teachers and parents, nor should they be the sole method of encouragement or reinforcement. However, when used to stimulate students or to keep them going, they can make a significant difference in performance. (Characteristics of successful incentives, and questions to administer to students for identifying incentives are included.) (LLL)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Dropout Prevention Center, Clemson, SC.