Psychologyof Human Motivation and Performance
Psychologyof Human Motivation and Performance
Topic1: Analysis of Deci and Ryan’s SDT on motivation
PsychologistsRichard Ryan and Edward Deci developed the Self-determination theory,which argues that most individuals are usually influenced by the needto develop and gain fulfillment. Self-determination theory (SDT),first assumes that individuals are directed by activities that drivethem towards growth. When they overcome the challenges, they manageto take new experiences that enable them to be motivated and developa cohesive sense of identity (Ryan & Sawin, 2009). Althoughpeople are usually driven by external factors such as acclaims,money, or prizes (extrinsic motivation), the main focus of SDT isessentially internal motivational sources like the need to gainindependence and knowledge. This theory argues that for people toattain psychological growth, they need to meet the following needs,competence, relatedness or connection, and autonomous. As such, it iscritical to draw a discourse that examines Deci and Ryan’s theoryto comprehend its elements, as well as, the way it addressesmotivation.
SDTis a macro theory of human motivation that focuses on fundamentalelements such as personality development, universal psychologicalneeds, self-regulation, non-conscious processes, aspirations and lifegoals, and the relationship between motivation and culture. Otherimportant elements of this theory include vitality and energy,affect, behavior, how motivation is influenced by socialenvironments, and people’s wellbeing (Deci & Ryan, 2008).Scholars and other experts have applied SDT on matters pertaining tonumerous life domains. It is important to note that most of theinformation that led to the development of SDT was published in the1970s and the first statement that started to directly analyze thistheory can be found in mid-1980s. Since then, research studies onthis theory have grown significantly. Currently, the availableinformation on the theory is more comprehensive than during thetheory’s development hence, it is possible for people tounderstand the tenets of the concept well.
Studieshave shown that the rapid rise in SDT publications has mostly focusedon applied fields such as education, sports, and healthcare. Thisimplies that these papers have covered diverse topics and not just onthe issue of motivation, and this shows that literature has reallybecome extensive. From a broad perspective, it can be argued that SDTbasically analyzes human motivation as well as personality (Deci &Ryan, 2008). For healthy functioning and development, the fundamentalpsychological and cognitive needs for competence, autonomy andrelatedness need to be polished. When these needs are satisfied,individuals start to function and develop effectively and they willalso experience wellness. However, when these needs are thwarted,there will be increased cases of non-optimal functioning.
CognitiveEvaluation Theory (CET)
Anothermotivation theory that is associated with Richard Ryan is cognitiveevaluation theory (CET). This theory is closely associated with SDTand most scholars consider it as its mini-theory. Just like SDT, CETconcerns itself with intrinsic motivation, which is the inspirationthat bases its tenets on satisfactions for personal or for behaving“for its own sake” (Riley, 2016). They have prototypes thatinvolve play and exploration by children however, scholars are ofthe opinion that intrinsic drive is basically a long-terminspiration. Ryan argues that CET tends to address the specificimpacts of social contexts related to intrinsic motivation, or howissues like interpersonal controls, rewards, and ego-involvementstend to affect intrinsic interests. Studies have shown that just likeSDT, CET addresses the important roles that autonomy and competencyplay and how they foster intrinsic motivation. These factors arecrucial in several other fields such as sports, education, arts, anddifferent other domains.
Numerouscontemporary and historical theories of motivation have analyzed itlargely as a single idea or concept. These theories concentrated onthe general level of inspiration which individuals had for certainactivities or behaviors. However, SDT started by distinguishingvarious forms of motivation. Initially, people thought that thequality or type of an individual’s motivation would have higherlevels of significance when the entire level of motivation isanalyzed (Deci & Ryan, 2008). The entire level was a concern withpredicting several crucial results of psychological well-being andhealth, creative tackling of problems, effective performance, andconceptual or deep learning. Undeniably, a huge amount of researchstudies revealed that the initial concepts were appropriate.
Oneof the main differences of SDT and CET is associated with controlledmotivation and autonomous motivation. Basically, autonomousmotivationis a concern with both intrinsic motivations as well as differentforms of extrinsic motivation where an individual has identified withthe value of an activity that is integrated in the sense of self. Anindividual who is autonomously motivated tends to have a feeling ofvolition, or in other words, self-endorsement of their action (Ryan &Sawin, 2009). Conversely, controlledmotivation ismade up of two factors. External regulation is where the behavior ofan individual is a function of external contingencies of punishmentand reward. Secondly, introjected regulation is where there exists apartial internalization of regulation of an action. It also becomespartially energized by different factors like of avoidance of shame,approval motive, contingent self-esteem, as well as ego-involvements.This means that motivation will be affected if an individual iscontrolled, or he is experiencing pressure in the way they feel,think, and behave. Therefore, both controlled and autonomousmotivation tend to direct and energize behavior.
Motivationand Psychological Requirements
Oneof the main principles of SDT is that for an individual to experiencewellness and be optimally motivated, they must experience certainpsychological needs in the activities they perform. In reality,scholars are of the opinion that the need’s concept in SDT is aimedat transmitting information that there is particular essential orimportant psychological assistance for wellness and motivation (Ryan,etal,2009). More specifically, it is believed that in a sub-theory of SDTknown as basic psychological needs theory, (BPNT) SDT argues thatthere are three universal, basic, and cross-developmentalpsychological needs that people should put into consideration, andthey include autonomy, competence, and relatedness.
Fromthe above analysis, it can be argued that SDT is not distinct when itcomes to the recognition of the significance of feelings of efficacyor competence for motivated behavior. From a cognitive perspective,an individual should experience some form of confidence andeffectiveness when he is exposed to positive forms of intrinsicmotivations (Ryan, etal,2009). With SDT and CET, the sense of competence is usuallyassociated with the skills of an individual within the field ofbehavior as well as attributes of the social environment. Therefore,when a group of individuals provides positive and meaningfulfeedback, there will be elevated feelings of competence and thisincreases motivation. On the contrary, when people constantly offernegative feedback, there will be a negative impact on the feelings ofcompetence and there will be increased possibilities of becomingdisengaged and discouraged.
Humanneeds concepts are of huge significance since they offer anunderstanding of how different interpersonal environments and socialforces affect controlled and autonomous motivation. SDT is the theorythat best describes my personal behavior because it provides acritical assessment of the psychological needs of a person, such asachievement, control, or intimacy (Deci & Ryan, 2008). However,it is important to note that needs are usually learned, and certainindividuals may develop more powerful needs compared to others. SinceSDT has maintained that the need for autonomy, competence andrelatedness are universal and fundamental, differences amongindividuals within SDT do not concentrate on the differences in thestrength of needs. In its place, SDT concentrates on the conceptsthat are associated with the level to which the needs are satisfiedor thwarted.
Inconclusion, this document has critically analyzed motivationaltheories by Deci and Ryan and the improvements that they haveachieved in comparison to other previous theories. It is evident thatRyan and Deci were instrumental psychologists who led to thedevelopment of self-determination theory, despite the fact that thetheory has an older history. Studies have shown that most individualsare usually motivated by external forces such as money and wealthwhich are usually classified as extrinsic motivation. However, SDTmainly focuses on intrinsic factors such as the need to attainindependence and knowledge. Over the years, a huge amount ofscholarly information has been published on the SDT and how itinfluences motivation. However, these studies have diversified intoother fields such as art, music, and education. This is a clearindication that SDT does not simply focus on human motivation butalso how other personality needs can be developed. This shows thatSTD is a significant concept in the development of people’spersonality and objectives. The theory focuses on inspiration andpeople’s needs hence, it is a critical aspect in supporting theirexpectations and goals.
Deci,E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2008). Self-Determination Theory: Amacrotheory of human motivation, development, and health. CanadianPsychology. 49(3):182–185
Riley,G. (2016). The role of self-determination theory and cognitiveevaluation theory in home education. CogentEducation(2016), 3: 1163651.
Ryan,P., & Sawin, K. J. (2009). The Individual and FamilySelf-Management Theory: Background and perspectives on context,process, and outcomes. NursingOutlook,57(4), 217–225.e6.
Ryan,R. M., Williams, G. C., Patrick, H., & Deci, E. L. (2009).Self-determination theory and physical activity: The dynamics ofmotivation in development and wellness.Hellenic Journal of Psychology.6: 107-124
Topic2: Intimacy behaviors: Loss of sexual motivation
Lackof sexual arousal
Sexualityis a key innate aspect of each individual from birth. The fundamentalfeature of sexual arousal is sexual desire, which refers to sexualdrive or the craving of sexual pleasure and activities (Moholy,Prause, Proudfit, Rahman, & Fong, 2015). High level of sexualdesires leads to frequent and intense trials to accomplish sexualpleasure. Sexual desire contributes to gradual or rapid physiologicalchanges, psychic arousal, physical contact that lead to pleasure andpossibly contributing to sexual release. Sexual arousal also servesas the main objective in creating long-term and short-termrelationships since in most cases, sex, is the main aspect inintimate interactions. When people crave for sex, they receivenumerous sexual stimuli. Desire manages sexual stimulation andenables sexual interaction and contact (Ashdown, Jalloh, & Wylie,2015 Crooks & Baur, 2016). In this regards, it is important tonote that without lack of sexual leads to emotional, health, andstress issues. Arousal disorder also leads to sexual disorders wherepeople lack the craving to engage in sexual activities.
Onthe other hand, the loss of desire or low libido is a main sexualissue that requires therapy, counseling and treatment. However, lossof sexual enthusiasm has received less private and public assistanceand support. In couples, the regular loss of sexual desire in one ofthe partner automatically complicates communication between the twopartners and erodes any satisfaction that the couple might haveenjoyed before. This can easily lead to separation, especially in anew relationship. Loss of sexual motivation is on the rise and needpublic and private awareness in order to enhance communication,minimize conflicts and separation in relationships.
TheFINSEX survey carried out a research in 1992, 1999 and 2007 toexamine issues surrounding loss of sexual desires (Galupo, 2013). Thequestionnaire developed asked the respondents whether they hadexperienced a problem with loss of sexual desires in a partner orthemselves for the past one year. Loss of sexual drive in a personwas defined in this questionnaire as an impediment if the respondentindicated that the issues emerged frequently. Loss of sexual arousalwas considerably high among women than in men. In 2007, 12% of menand 41% of women were faced with a lack of sexual need frequently(Galupo, 2013). Between 1992 and 1999, the lack of sexual driveincreased in both and women and men, but the trend continued amongwomen between 1999 and 2007. This shows that the sexual desire gapbetween men and women has increased further (Galupo, 2013). Theresearch correlated with similar studies, which shows that womenusually report decreased sexual desire than men (Moholy et al.,2015). However, the loss varies across age groups because it isexacerbated by emotions and hormones. In various contemporarystudies, the proportions of individuals who have lost interest inintercourse fluctuate between 10 percent and 15 percent. In thecurrent study as well, women who frequently suffer from lack ofsexual desires ranges between 14 and 15 percent. According to thesestudies, lack of sexual desire is mainly common in older peoplecompared to young individuals (Miller, Perlman & Brehm, 2012).This means that as people age, their cravings for most needs such assex decreases.
Researchtools and technologies
Thestudy explored the problem using explanatory research tool as itattempted to determine facts from the affected people. Theexplanatory study enables a researcher to look at a problem or thepresented issue in a descriptive, a fact that allows understandingthe cause and implication of a problem. This has been done throughexploring different literature related to the study. The source ofinformation has been generated from the textbooks. In the survey,participants were randomly selected and questionnaires mailed tothem. The use of illustrative approach helped the scientists tocompare the questionnaire filled to past studies, as well as, to thedifferent participants.
Significanceof sex to a healthy and stable relationship
Accordingto the FINSEX research, lack of sexual desires whether in a partneror oneself was highly linked with the affection that respondents hadconcerning their relationships. Low libido had no substantial resultson whether one shared the feeling of love with the spouse however,it did influence assessments of couple’s happiness. According tothe research, a substantially lower number of men consider having ahappy relationship when their spouses frequently experience a lack ofsexual desires. Only five percent of both female and male considerhaving a happy relationship when their spouses are faced with theloss of sexual arousal (Galupo, 2013). This shows that lack of sexualdesire is not as high as previously thought, although the researchmay not be conclusive since it was only conducted in a single country(Finland). According to Miller et al. (2012), lack of sexual desireis directly connected to how difficult or easy it is to discusssexual issues with partners. In the cases of relationships affectedwith low libido, approximately 40% of both male and female find itawkward or difficult to discuss sex with one another (Galupo, 2013).This issue escalates communication problems among couples. Peoplemainly assume that the issue of lack of sex desire for couples can bereplaced by other means of sexual aspects such as touching andcloseness. Unfortunately, studies reveal that the opposite scenariois true. Thus, it is important for people to communicate their issuesin events of decreased sexual desire.
Crooksand Baur (2016) asserts that sex is a key facet of happiness inrelationships. Sexual satisfaction contributes to a healthy andstable marriage. However, in some cases, couples have been faced withproblems because of lack of sexual drive. People see a low sex desireas shameful thus, they fail to see it as a health problem. Withoutproper direction and advice, lack of sexual desire can easily destroythe marriage. Low sexual arousal has become a major issue in marriageconflicts since low sexual desires in any of the partner gives theother partner the reason to cheat. It is imperative to note thatmarriage conflicts have severe consequences. In most conflicts,children suffer, as the couple separate or engage in bad behaviorssuch as substance abuse. In some cases, partners break up or cheatsince it becomes difficult for the partner with the sexual desire tostay without sex. Therapists and sexual researchers take this issueas a major sexual dilemma. Sex is an important aspect of anyrelationship or marriage thus, couples need to communicateeffectively in case of loss of sexual desire and seek medicalattention.
Inthe modern world, experts are concentrating more on the sources ofHSD, while sex therapists are laying out the methods to treat it.Despite 50% positive results in dealing with low sexual arousal, abig number of those people who suffer from HSD do not seek assistance(Wylie, 2015). This is mainly because they do not comprehend it as aproblem or they are ashamed of their situations. According to Wylie(2015), in all sexual issues, HSD is the riskiest to deal with,despite the fact that it can be treated successfully. The answer isto seek a highly qualified marital and sex therapist who hasknowledge in dealing with the issue. HSD is the main vice that sextherapists encounter, but unfortunately, millions of people gountreated. Sexual therapist should make their patient comprehend thatHSD is a common issue that can be easily treated.
Conclusively,what couples do not effectively figure out is that they are thebiggest contributors to loss of sex drive. They fail to understandthat presumed rejection, negative self-assessment, and the lack tocomprehend the needs of one of the partner usually exacerbate theproblem. Moreover, the failure to understand what makes male andfemale more desirable and the failure to effectively address sexualbond also play a big part in causing the loss of sex drive. As such,it is essential for couples to seek medical assistance andcommunicate their issues to avoid conflicts.
Ashdown,H., Jalloh, C., & Wylie, J. L. (2015). Youth Perspectives onSexual Health Workshops Informing Future Practice. Qualitativehealth research, 25(11),1540-1550.
Crooks,R., & Baur, K. (2016). Oursexuality.Redwood City, CA: Benjamin Cummings Pub.
Galupo,P. (2013). Oursexuality.Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth.
Miller,R. S., Perlman, D., & Brehm, S. S. (2012). Intimaterelationships.Boston: McGraw-Hill Higher Education.
Moholy,M., Prause, N., Proudfit, G. H., S. Rahman, A., & Fong, T.(2015). Sexual desire, not hypersexuality, predicts self-regulationof sexual arousal. Cognitionand Emotion, 29(8),1505-1516.
Wylie,K. R. (Ed.). (2015). ABCof sexual health.John Wiley & Sons.
Topic5: Effects of Depression on Academic Achievement
Depressionis a severe mood disorder, which affects the way people think, feel,and engage in their daily routines such as working, eating, andsleeping. Today, depression has become a prevalent issue amonglearners across the world, perhaps due to feelings of helplessnessand hopelessness. According to the National Institute of MentalHealth, many learners encounter some signs of depression (Ibrahim,Kelly, Adams, & Glazebrook, 2013). Without treatment, depressedpeople feel sad and disregard their good traits and accomplishmentswhile overstressing their failures and faults. Al-Qaisy (2011)asserts that depressed people display an undesirably illustrativestyle than non-depressive people. As such, feelings of depressionaffect the behavior of the students, which ultimately affect theiracademic performance. Hence, it is important to critically examinestudies on depression to understand how depression negatively affectsacademic success and related biological and cognitive components.
Effectson learned, cognitive, and biological elements and academicachievement
Agreat number of depressed learners are not cognizant that depressionis the foundation of the changes in their moods, emotions, and theability to communicate or interact with other students and peopleeffectively. Unhappiness changes a person’s mood, often creating afeeling of sadness, helplessness, and desperateness, which forces astudent to feel worthless. If untreated, the changes lead to severeconsequences such as hallucinations, delusions, and sometimes death.For school children, dejection causes a feeling of loneliness, oftenfollowed by disinterest in daily routines. Ibrahim et al. (2013)assert that dejected students show difficulties in tasks that requireconcentration such as mathematics and science, as their minds areelsewhere. The feeling of hopelessness and vulnerability created bydownheartedness forces students to overlook their strengths andinstead concentrate on their faults and failures. Moreover, Al-Qaisy(2011) and Fröjd et al. (2008) contend that miserable people havedifficulties in their interactions and communications with peers andparents, decreased involvement and interest in accountabilities andtasks. In most cases, these people withdraw from the society andinteractions with parents and peers or create anxiety in them, wherethey have difficulties transitioning to different situations. Often,they become disinterested in communal tasks and will spend hoursrestless and feverish.
Onthe other hand, the disorder leads to health issues such asheadaches, stomachache, and fatigue. These health issues often causea student to skip classes. Numerous studies show that students whousually fail to attend classes have lower academic success thanstudents who attend classes (McLeod, Uemura, & Rohrman, 2012).This shows that health issues have a positive correlation with pooracademic attainment. Moreover, in their studies, Ibrahim et al.(2013) and Quiroga, Janosz, Bisset, and Morin (2013) show thatdepressed people often participate in high-risk activities such asdrug abuse, sex, aggression, and suicide attempts. It is important tonote that most high-risk behaviors such as violence, sex, and drugabuse among the youth cause disinterest in academic, lead to memoryloss, and ultimately lead to poor academic performance. Memory lossand disinterest usually lead to forgetfulness and difficulties inconcentration, which affect numerous elements of school routines,from finishing assignments and paying attention in the classroom tofollowing directions. Thus, it is imperative to note thatdownheartedness creates learning disorder, anxiety, impairment,problem behaviors such as aggression, social isolation, and memoryloss, which contributes greatly to poor academic performance.
Thedisorder has a major influence on behavior, health, mood, and aperson’s well-being. Richardson, Abraham, and Bond (2012) positthat long term effects of despair such as delusions andhallucinations can damage a student’s health. However, Richardsonet al. (2012) note that the correlation between the disorder anddeteriorating health is affected by the number, persistence, andnature of the depression, as well as, a student’s or a person’sbiological vulnerability. On the other hand, Fröjd et al. (2008)assert that hopelessness affects people’s thoughts, attitudes,interpretations, inferences, as well as, the manner in which theyrecall information. In this regards, it causes people to viewthemselves in a negative manner. Ibrahim et al. (2013) postulate thatthe illness is associated with imbalances and problems in the brainespecially in relation to dopamine, serotonin, and neurotransmitters.This means that dejected people have systems that do not handle theimplications of stress effectively. It is important to note that thedisorder affects a person’s health and cognitive aspects, whichexplains the reduced concentration, high levels of anxiety, andhealth issues.
Comparisonand contrast of two studies
Intheir article, AdolescentMental Health, Behavior Problems, And Academic Achievement,Jane McLeod, Ryotaro Uemura, and Shawna Rohrman employed alongitudinal study aligned to qualitative exploration technique todetermine the correlation between health and behavior issues withacademic performance. On the other hand, Fröjd et al. (2008), intheir article, Depressionand School Performance in Middle Adolescent Boys and Girlsused qualitative epidemiological study. While Fröjd et al. (2008)only investigated the connection between diverse levels of depressionwith different elements of school performance, McLeod et al. (2012)investigated the correlations of misbehavior, drug use, depression,and attention problems with academic achievements. In this regards,Fröjd et al. (2008) article provided an analysis focused ondepression and academic attainment only while McLeod et al. (2012)included other aspects such as drug abuse, delinquency, and attentionissues. This means that Fröjd et al. (2008) study provided acomprehensive assessment of the disorder and academic performancethan McLeod et al. (2012) article. McLeod et al. (2012) investigatedthe strongest association among depression, delinquency, attentionproblems, and drug abuse. Moreover, the authors examined theparticular combination of the issues that had the greatestconsequence to academic performance. In this regards, McLeod et al.(2012) examined the consequences of each identified issue andultimately asserted that depression compared to other behavior issueswas less consequential to academic accomplishment. Moreover, McLeodet al. (2012) found out that depression unlike drug abuse,delinquency, and attention problems was not associated with lowerGPA.
Onthe other hand, Fröjd et al. (2008) examined the effects ofhopelessness on academic success among adolescents aged between 13and 17 years. They examined the correlation between objective schoolattainment (as evaluated by a change in GPA and GPA) and subjectiveperformance (perceived loading of assignments and difficulties invarious areas) with hopelessness among students. They then evaluatedthe most affected variables by depression. From their study, theyfound out that depressed students reported a lower GPA thannon-depressed students. Fröjd et al. (2008) found out that theillness was associated with objective aspects of performanceespecially change in GPA and a lower GPA, but only correlated to somesubjective aspects.
Toolsused in the studies
McLeodet al. (2012) used a longitudinal study by sourcing data from AddHealth and National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. Thestudy examined adolescents as they transitioned from middle to highschool. The data collected included a sample of 52 middle schools and80 high schools with students in 7ththrough 12thgrade invited to partake in an in-school survey study in 1994 (N =90,118). Of the 90,118 who took part in the in-school study, asubsample of 20,745 took part in the succeeding in-home study. Thesame sample took part in another survey one year later with theexception of high school seniors (N = 14,738). Other surveys weretaken: 2001-2002 (N =15,197), and 2008-2009, (N =15,701). The students were randomly selected and the studies usedGPA, highest degree attained, and vocabulary test scores for academicaptitude as measures of the study. Moreover, the level of depressionwas measured using a 19-item scale of the Center for EpidemiologicalStudies. On the other hand, Fröjd et al. (2008) employed aqualitative epidemiological study and comprised a sample size of 2329from a population of 2516 students aged between 13 and 17 years.Students completed questionnaires, but 3% of the questionnaires wereexcluded because of incomplete data. The researcher measureddepression using BDI (R-Beck Depression Inventory) with scores of nodepression (0-4), mild (5-7), moderate (8-15), and severe (16-39).The performance was measured using GPA and perceived workload fornumerous tasks.
Fromthe studies examined, it is important to note that depression is asevere mood disorder and a cause of health, cognitive, and behaviorissues. Al-Qaisy (2011), Fröjd et al. (2008), and Quiroga et al.(2013) shows that depressed people have weakened capacities to copewith academic responsibilities thus, they usually report pooracademic performance. Moreover, according to the studies, depressionwas associated with other problems such as drug abuse, aggression,and social isolation hence, it is important for academicians toattempt to find solutions and engage students on the best way toinhibit despair. One of the most significant and comprehensiveaspects is to promote mental health in school settings and developingsupport approaches such as promoting effective learning approachesand enhancing self-esteem. Moreover, treatment and proper psychiatricassessment should be provided for dejected students to help theiracademic performance.
Al-Qaisy,L. M. (2011). The relation of depression and anxiety in academicachievement among group of university students. InternationalJournal of Psychology and Counseling, 3(5),96-100.
Fröjd,S. A., Nissinen, E. S., Pelkonen, M. U., Marttunen, M. J., Koivisto,A. M., & Kaltiala-Heino, R. (2008). Depression and schoolperformance in middle adolescent boys and girls. Journalof adolescence, 31(4),485-498.
Ibrahim,A. K., Kelly, S. J., Adams, C. E., & Glazebrook, C. (2013). Asystematic review of studies of depression prevalence in universitystudents. Journalof psychiatric research, 47(3),391-400.
McLeod,J. D., Uemura, R., & Rohrman, S. (2012). Adolescent mentalhealth, behavior problems, and academic achievement. Journalof health and social behavior,0022146512462888.
Richardson,M., Abraham, C., & Bond, R. (2012). Psychological correlates ofuniversity students` academic performance: a systematic review andmeta-analysis. Psychologicalbulletin, 138(2),353.
Quiroga,C. V., Janosz, M., Bisset, S., & Morin, A. J. (2013). Earlyadolescent depression symptoms and school dropout: Mediatingprocesses involving self-reported academic competence andachievement. Journalof Educational Psychology, 105(2),552.