This is the second session of Motivation and Management class. I read on the module that the topic would about the influence of needs on motivation to learn. After reading the topic title, the first thing come up to my mind is needs would give contribution to someone’s motives.

My assumption is not deviated at all. What I got in class is about needs which influences students’ motivation on learning. Lecturer was starting the session by asking question about our strategy to boost up other’s motives. For instance, what do you do to motivate your boyfriend? The question was quite open my mind where this session would be run. I realized that the way we motivate others should be related to the individual itself, such as the individuals’ needs.

Lecturer gave me two articles to be read and discussed with my partner. There were Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Humanistic Theories. Although we have learned about Maslow on the Educational Psychology course, but this session was still interesting for me to deepen my knowledge about this theory.

Survival Needs

Abraham Maslow emphasized on the hierarchy of needs. He divided human needs into 2 parts, deficiency needs and growth needs. Deficiency needs is about the basic needs of human being, which consists of survival needs, safety needs, belonging needs and self esteem needs. In growth need, there is self-actualization as the rooftop of Maslow’s hierarchy. Maslow classifies and divides human needs specifically and in detail. He really thought deeply about what should be the basic of human needs since his theory would be a hierarchy. As for me, hierarchy is a step-by-step process in which when you do not fulfill one step then you will not get the other step. So, I disagree with the usage of hierarchy terminology. For example, somebody who lived alone along his life will get his self esteem when he has achieve his goal, not after he has got love or acceptance from anybody. It possibly could happen to any of us. Hence, there will always a possibility for someone to achieve the rooftop of Maslow’s theory after skipping one step.

The next activity in our class was a group role-play. I was so surprised when the lecturer told us that the role-play would be presented at the same day. I got group of 5 persons. We prepared what subtopic that would be performed. We got praise and criticism. Then we read the article and decided what story we would play. We got some understandings from the reading. Praise and criticism were influencing students’ motivation in learning so much. Finally, we chose to play 2 scenes to show the audiences the appropriate and inappropriate praise and criticism. The first scene was talked about the teacher who praises her students exaggeratedly and criticizes cruelly.  For example, she praises students by saying “Oh my God, you are too smart, you are so good, smart, smart, good!” and she criticize other student by saying “what the hell is this, have you learn something from my class? It is totally wrong. Crap”. The second scene was talked about the teacher who praises the students appropriately and criticizes wisely. For example, she praises her student by saying, “keep up your good work” and she criticizes other student by saying “well, you did systemically until step 3, but look at the next step carefully, is there something wrong? You can revised it”.

Besides performing our role-play, we also watched other group’s role-play.  Lecturer asked us to determine the subtopic that our friend performed. There were emotional reactions, autonomy, self-worth, need of relatedness and also praise and criticism. We learned a lot from each other. I realized that the needs is really influential for students motivation toward learning. Therefore, as a teacher, we need to know every need of our students then we can use it to motivate them in learning. 🙂

Vanny Septia Efendi