Analysis Of Engineering Student Motivation Using The Expectancy Value Theory

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Analysis of Engineering Student Motivation using the Expectancy Value Theory
Eric Gauck
December 5th, 2014
Colorado State University
JTC 300 – R27 eric.gauck@gmail.com Abstract
The purpose of this research is to examine the initial preconceptions that engineering freshmen believe when they first arrive at Colorado State University. Specifically, it will examine the dichotomies between student perception and reality; hopefully revealing the perceptions and values which lead students to leave or persevere in engineering. The focus of analysis on student motivation utilizes the Expectancy-Value Theory. Three aspects of the Expectancy Value Theory, expectation, utility, and perseverance, are significant factors which contribute to the completion of challenges. These factors are integrated into a questionnaire designed to evaluate the expectations of freshman engineering students. The implementation of a numerically scaled questionnaire developed from components of the Expectancy Value Theory allows the abstract concept of motivation to be quantified. The analysis of 86 freshman engineering students found that students will need to develop a value in what they are learning or a drive for future goals to persist in completing their declared degrees. Further data collection is recommended to improve sample quality.
Introduction
This empirical report tests a sample population to better understand the motivations and expectations for freshman engineering students. The intent
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