What motivates learners? What actually works? How to achieve worthwhile learning? These questions have challenged online educators and instructional designers for ever. And it would be a huge mistake to think that a new technology is sufficient for raising students’ interest and involving them with the content and activities. The technology itself is never enough, just as much as the presence of a flipchart and a marker in a traditional classroom does not immediately turn students into the most motivated and efficient of learners.
Existing literature on learning technologies mentions a number of strategies that can increase learner motivation. What most of them have in common is that, on conceptual level, they often boil down to transferring the strategies that have been found to be efficient in conventional classrooms into online learning scenarios.
- creating a supportive but at the same time challenging learning environment,
- providing choice and flexibility,
- establishing short-term goals,
- offering immediate feedback,
- stimulating student curiosity,
- creating personal and concrete content that students can relate to,
- using relevant, authentic and goal-driven learning tasks as well as
- creating opportunities for interaction, collaboration and personal growth.