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Motivation: Its place in Learning Design

A Cloud for collaborative development of ways Motivation Principles can be part of Learning Design

Cloud created by:

Art Oglesby
29 January 2013

Here is a link to the Motivation: How it fits in Learning Design Discussion Google Group.

Please help develop how Motivation should fit into Learning Design.

Many of the volunteer organizations I volunteer at struggle with retention and engagement.
Community or social  based Learning Activities could benefit, too, if motivating principles are built in to the Learning Design.
  • Badges
  • Autonomy
  • Mastery
  • Purpose
  • Hierarchy / Rank
  • Be seen and Heard
  • Reputation
  • Virtual Currency
  • Peer Review (1-5 stars)
  • Certificates of  participation
  • Certificate of competency
  • Likes or G+ etc.

I see many of these used in OLDSMOOCs learning design.

Extra content

Suggested Links

Motivational Design Wikipedia

Art Oglesby
16:16 on 30 January 2013

Embedded Content

added by Art Oglesby


Art Oglesby
3:34pm 29 January 2013

I joined the Digital Literacy in Higher Education community.

They use Ning and virtual currency is built in.

It allows every new participant to be given a number of credits which can be used to buy gifts.

A Learning Design could be structured to pay participants credits for activities.

Learners could offer to pay credits to mentors/tutors.

When a participant runs out of credits they could earn more by helping others or creating content.

Peter Miller
10:15pm 29 January 2013 (Edited 3:26pm 30 January 2013)

I'm not entirely convinced by the extrinsic motivators listed; they may work a few times but they will most likely soon pall. I'm more interested in the approach championed by Nick Shackleton-Jones in his Affective Context model where intrinsic motivation is the driver rather than learning being reward-oriented. Of course, that may be easier said than done.

Virtual currencies feature widely in virtual worlds and payment for content and training along the lines you describe is not unusual.

Art Oglesby
12:44am 30 January 2013


Thanks for that link. I watched the video, too. That technique of writing what you are saying on a whiteboard is so much more engaging than just audio, or just text.




Art Oglesby
12:54pm 30 January 2013 (Edited 1:46pm 30 January 2013)

Thanks to OLDSMOOC for pointing to this cloud.

How can we develop this cloud?

Ideas?     Develop into a tool? 

Here is a link to Discussion about Motivation.

Peter Miller
3:25pm 30 January 2013

Recent blog by Clark Quinn on engagement in similar territory Karl Kapp blogs on the topic

Art Oglesby
3:42pm 30 January 2013

Thanks Peter,

Here is the link to the Clark Quinn blog post 

There are several important components:

Making it meaningful: focus on changes that will impact the workplace and help convey to the learner that this is real and really needed.  If it’s not tied to impacting a business metric, it’s probably not the right topic.

Making it personal: this includes several things.  One is writing like you’re talking to the person. Another is having them connect it to their own practices, either retroactively or proactively.  Give them an assignment about what to do in the workplace that they bring back.

Making it visceral: this means introducing and using examples that go beneath the merely informative, and tap into basic instincts. Learners should be connected in a very emotional way, using fear or empathy or other hook that appeals directly to their personal needs in ways that cause them to resonate in their core.

Minimalizing: going through and slashing your verbiage.  Most elearning is grossly overwritten, and can be trimmed at least 40%, and usually can be trimmed down 60% or more.  You want to use rich media (I’m pushing graphic novel formats in the project) and animations, but much less prose and production than you think you need.

Putting it into practice: this means having the learner perform the way they’ll need to perform outside the learning experience.  Get them making the decisions in practice that you want in the workplace.  It’s not about knowing, it’s about doing.  Until they can’t get it wrong.

Making it flow: think about not just the individual bits, but also the segue between them.  What’s the emotional trajectory the learner goes through?  How are they intrigued, and how do we lead them from apathy and anxiety to motivation and confidence?

These are the top level categories, but they map out into more practices. And you should be working on these in your teams. And I can state from experience that just workshops by themselves aren’t sufficient, and what really helps are an exposure to the principles and the practice, then feedback on a series of attempts until satisfied that the principles have been internalized in the practice.  Please, go beyond content, and get into real experience design.  Systematically, reliably, and repeatedly.  For your learners, and for the industry.  We need to lift our game.

Ida Brandão
3:43pm 30 January 2013

I suppose we can establish links with the ARCS model of motivational design of John Keller -

«...based on Tolman's and Lewin's expectancy-value theory, which presumes that people are motivated to learn if there is value in the knowledge presented (i.e. it fulfills personal needs) and if there is an optimistic expectation for success.» (in Wikipedia)

I suppose we can also relate motivation to Bandura's self-efficacy  "the belief in one’s capabilities to organize and execute the courses of action required to manage prospective situations." In other words, self-efficacy is a person’s belief in his or her ability to succeed in a particular situation. Bandura described these beliefs as determinants of how people think, behave, and feel (1994).(in Psychology)

Art Oglesby
3:59pm 30 January 2013

Thanks Ida,

The ARCS model approach  by John Keller

How to integrate learner motivation planning into lesson planning: (pdf: paper)

Peter Miller
5:08pm 30 January 2013

I have to confess that I have a sneaking regard for Flow and especially the diagram in that Wikipedia article I linked.

Art Oglesby
5:42pm 4 February 2013

Engagement and Motivation in MOOCs 

Stephen Downes blog post

Art Oglesby
8:28pm 10 February 2013

Quora is using a "credits" system which is like the vitual currency I proposed to incentivise desire behavior.

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