Summary module description:
This course will examine the nature of human motivation by comparing different theoretical perspectives on motivation proposed in the literature. We will also briefly touch on the neural basis of motivation and possible applications to education to further expand our understanding of motivation.

Aims:
To enable students to study topics relating to human motivation in depth; to give students experience of critical evaluation of selected topics in this field; to give them experience of current research being undertaken; to help them develop the ability to study independently.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the course, students should (1) understand different theoretical perspectives on human motivation; (2) be aware of the antecedents and consequences of different types of motivation; (3) be able to describe and evaluate some of the key studies in the field of motivation.

Additional outcomes:
Students will gain experience from participating in evaluative discussions of research and theory in large and small groups. The module additionally provides an opportunity for students to improve either their essay-writing skills or their ability to work as part of a team to present an argument in an oral presentation format.

Outline content:
5 3-hr seminars

Each session will start with an introductory lecture explaining one of the five basic theories of motivation:
(1) drive theory (i.e., motivation for food and water),
(2) self-efficacy,
(3) intrinsic and extrinsic motivation,
(4) achievement goals, and
(5) self-esteem and social motivation.

We will also briefly touch on the neural basis of motivation and possible applications to
education to further expand our understanding of motivation.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
This course of 5 x 3-hour seminars will use a mixture of short lectures alongside student presentations and group discussions. Each session will start with an introductory lecture, followed by a variety of teaching methods, including discussions, small group work, and students’ presentations. Students will be required to review assigned papers/book chapters for each seminar. During the course of the module, students will either prepare an essay or contribute to a group presentation on a relevant topic.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Seminars 15
Guided independent study 85
       
Total hours by term 100.00
       
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Other information on summative assessment:
Extended essay report.

Formative assessment methods:
Groupwork and presentations within class.

Penalties for late submission:
Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/exams/student/exa-guidePG.aspx

Length of examination:

Requirements for a pass:
50% overall.

Reassessment arrangements:
An alternative piece of coursework will be provided.

Last updated: 24 March 2015

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