Reading In Action

Author: @giuliaforsythe

Third meeting of the BCcampus Bookclub

Hello Everyone,

The third meeting of the BCcampus Book Club will be tomorrow, Friday October 5 at 10 AM PST.

Please connect a few minutes earlier to check your technical setup (especially your audio connection) by checking out this page with information about Blue Jeans web conferencing and the link to our dedicated room.

Here are a few questions to help us get started in our Chapter Three discussion.

  • Is motivation an issue for you? (yourself and/or your learners)
  • Do you find the biggest challenges are value, expectancies, or learning environment?
  • Goal directed behaviour and feedback are essential in addition to motivation; do you make this explicit in any way?
  • Have you tried any of the recommended strategies (or others)? How did it go?

Looking forward to discussing the chapter with all of you!

Giulia Forsythe, Chapter Three Facilitator

Chapter Three: Motivation


Building on the first two chapters topics of prior learning and knowledge organization, Chapter 3 of HLW asks the big question about motivation: 

What Factors Motivate Students to Learn? 
How Learning Works: Chapter 3 Motivation


Is it worth doing? Is this worth knowing? This is obviously subjective!

HLW describes the different types of value we seek:

  • Attainment value
  • Intrinsic value
  • Instrumental value


  • Is it possible?
  • Can I do it?
    • Has my prior experience affected my perceptions of self-efficacy?
    • Do I believe success is attributable to luck or effort

HLW says that learners who believe that efficacy can be influenced by controllable behaviours, like effort, will be more likely to achieve their goal. Of course the goal must be scaffolded in a way that shows the task or learning is possible.

Goal Setting

Once motivated, we want to encourage goal directed behaviour. Goals can take many forms, depending on your motivation. These are not mutually exclusive and may overlap in many ways.

  • Performance goals
    • Avoid incompetence
    • Achieve competence
  • Learning goals 
  • Affective goals
  • Social goals
  • Work avoidant goals (least effort for maximum success)

Supportive learning environment

Of course all of this is contingent upon a learning environment that is supportive and consistent with meeting goals, aligned with expectancies, and value.

So What?

This is a great question which HLW asks, what is the value?

Now What?

HLW works makes 18 suggestions, briefly summarized here:

  • Organize information & Prior knowledge
  • Show Relevance
  • Provide Flexibility
  • Scaffold towards goal
  • Show effort can help achieve the goal
  • Assessment is authentic and meaningful
  • Criteria for success (consistent, fair, explicit expectations and rubrics)
  • Targeted feedback towards goal-directed behaviour and success
  • Provide opportunities for Reflection

To reflect on this chapter and prepare for the upcoming book club meeting you may wish to comment on the following:

Is motivation an issue in your classes? Describe your challenge/ successes.

To encourage participation, those who share a comment/post this week will have their name entered into the Chapter Three draw for a $25 CAD gift certificate for Chapters Indigo. Read the contest guidelines here. Good luck!

The Book Club chat on Chapter Three will take place on Friday, October 5 at 10 AM PST. Check out the schedule and how to connect with the group. We also invite you to say hello in the Comments section of our Intro post.