Effects of Task Conditions and Administrations on Changes in State Motivation

Tsutomu Koga


Many traditional motivation studies have argued that trait motivation strongly controls state motivation. This study, however, focuses more on state motivation and attempts to suggest a bottom-up approach whereby stimulating state motivation through the use of tasks has a potential to positively influence trait motivation. As few studies have argued the task administration and condition in relation to changes in state variables, this study deals mainly with task conditions (i.e., closed vs. open tasks) and task administration (i.e., individual vs. pair tasks) with special attention to changes in state motivation, perceived competence, and anxiety. Four sets of narrative writing tasks were designed: individual-closed, individual-open, pair-closed, and pair-open. Before and after each task, students were asked to answer questionnaires measuring the previously mentioned three state variables. The results indicate that (a) learners’ motivation, competence, and anxiety were more likely to positively change in pair tasks, (b) before the tasks, individual-tasks were considered more attractive than pair-tasks, and (c) after the tasks, however, learners felt more competent performing pair-tasks than individual-tasks. Based on these results, this study suggests that pair tasks positively influence learners’ state variables.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.22158/selt.v4n3p360


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