Self-Determination Theory in Action Essay

682 Words3 Pages
Self-determination theory (SDT) is a theory of motivation that allows students to be more autonomous with their learning and achieve greater challenges academically. There are several factors that influence a student’s ability to self-regulate their learning which leads to improved academic performance and overall well-being. Students need to be autonomous, competent, and feel as if they can relate to others. First of all, it is important for teachers to create a learning environment where students learn to be intrinsically motivated. Intrinsic motivation occurs when students willingly participate in an activity because they find enjoyment in the activity. When students become intrinsically motivated they are willing to take…show more content…
This occurs when students not only recognize the value or importance in a particular activity, but are also able to understand how their actions can impact those around them. Competence is equally as important as autonomy and relatedness in developing self-determination. Teachers can help students feel competent by presenting academically achievable challenges within a students zone of proximal development, the specific range between a students independent work level and their assisted work level. When students are able to complete tasks that are set before them independently their self-esteem grows and they become more confident. The last area that needs to be met for students to become completely self-determined is relatedness. When a teacher works hard to relate to a student and build a relationship that is built on trust, then the students are more likely to become engaged in their learning and show integrity within the classroom community through identified and integrated regulation as the main motivating factors. It is important for a student to feel as if their actions are worthwhile and appreciated within the classroom. Instead of talking about how smart a student is and complimenting natural ability, it is more important to compliment a students work ethic and motivation. The best way to support students developing self-determination is to create a classroom environment that allow students to guide their own learning. Give your students the
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