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Motivation in ESP classes

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Рубрика: Педагогические науки
Журнал: «Евразийский Научный Журнал №7 2018»  (июль, 2018)
Количество просмотров статьи: 1918
Показать PDF версию Motivation in ESP classes

A teacher of TerSU, Uzbekistan

A motive is what impels the person to act in a certain way or at least develop a slope for specific behavior. According to Maehr and Meyer, “Motivation is a word that is part of the popular culture as few other psychological concepts are”. Motivation itself means the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way, desire or willingness to do something, the act or an instance of motivating, first used at the late XIX century, originated from the word “motive” which means the reason for a certain course of action, whether conscious or unconscious. The word “motivate” is a verb, which means provide someone with a reason for doing something or to give incentive to.

The term of motivation has long been the main problem for many teachers who teach English as a foreign Language (EFL) for ESP students. Most of the teachers agree with the idea of in EFL classes the most important factor is motivation. They all sure, that motivation is considered as one of the most important ones, because majority of students have low motivation in learning English.

In addition, most of them have an uncertain idea of “English will or not be useful for me in future”, and they do not even know the meaning of this idea deeply, but yet it is a strong motivator, it is too wrong and blurred. Motivation is something positive, which stimulates and awakens person to act.

“Student motivation is influenced by both internal and external factors that can start, sustain, intensify, or discourage behaviour” (Reeve, 1996).The teacher has to activate these motivational components in the students but that is the precise problem.

The more thought, time and energy your students invest in the work of your course, the more deeply they will learn. Yet given all the demands on students’ time, they may not focus as much attention on your course as you would hope, especially if your class is out of their field of primary interest. If you are teaching an introductory or non-majors class, knowing something about student motivation can be especially helpful.

That students are most motivated when 1) they value what they are learning and 2) when they believe they can be successful learning new or unfamiliar material. In order to create an environment in which students will value what they are learning.

One of the biggest challenges in the classroom is improving student motivation. The two types of motivation for learning are intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic learning occurs when the student already has an interest in learning the subject and is inspired internally. However, extrinsic motivation occurs when other factors, such as a reward or recognition, drive them to participate in class. It is the teacher’s responsibility to engage students in learning by tapping into intrinsic and extrinsic motivations.

Students who have positive relationships with teachers are more engaged in learning. Conduct group discussions about subjects that interest them to uncover their personalities. Give surveys with questions about their favorite books, movies, hobbies and sports. Open up to your students as well about your background and interests to show you are genuinely interested in making connections.

Each student learns differently and should have a variety of projects and activities to peak her interest. For example, instead of a written exam, give students a list of assignments to choose from, including writing an essay, delivering a presentation, and drawing art. By doing this, you address various learning styles, such as auditory, visual and tactile, helping students to participate in ways that are most natural to them.

Before we can effectively motivate students to participate in class, we must identify the various ways student participation can be structured. Each method provides differentiated opportunities to encourage participation from all learners. The most common method is whole-class discussion, valuing all responses, which helps less confident students to feel more comfortable participating.

Self-confidence plays a major role in students choosing whether or not to participate in class. In order to motivate students to participate, teachers should drill down from large group, to small group, to individual conversations as a best practice to create open dialogue with students. As the relationship grows, teachers learn about their students’ goals and dreams and what matters to them. This practice opens the door for increased participation from students who have been reluctant in the past. The key is to encourage students to go above and beyond their comfort zone, which helps to build and sustain confidence.

So, telling the truth I usually try to motivate my ESP students during the lessons.


  1. McMillan J. H. and Forsyth D. R. “What Theories of Motivation Say About Why Learners Learn.” 1991.
  2. Pintrich P., & Schunk D. Motivation in education: Theory, research, and applications. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill Prentice-Hall. 2002.
  3. Schiefele U. “Interest, Learning, and Motivation.” Educational Psychologist, 1991, 26 (3 & 4), 299-323.