Original Research

Profile of factors influencing academic motivation among grade 6 and 7 learners at a state school

Sarah I.N. Yiga, Lerato Khoarai, Thapelo Khosana, Rebonethato Lesupi, Joanah Mduli, Tamryn Shadwell, Johan Botes, Gina Joubert
South African Journal of Childhood Education | Vol 9, No 1 | a623 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v9i1.623 | © 2019 Sarah I.N. Yiga, Lerato Khoarai, Thapelo Khosana, Rebonethato Lesupi, Joanah Mduli, Tamryn Shadwell, Johan Botes, Gina Joubert | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 13 February 2018 | Published: 27 May 2019

About the author(s)

Sarah I.N. Yiga, Department of Family Medicine, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Lerato Khoarai, Department of Family Medicine, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Thapelo Khosana, Department of Family Medicine, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Rebonethato Lesupi, Department of Family Medicine, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Joanah Mduli, Department of Family Medicine, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Tamryn Shadwell, Department of Family Medicine, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Johan Botes, Department of Family Medicine, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Gina Joubert, Department of Biostatistics, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Academic achievement is influenced by a system of internal and external stimuli. Internal stimuli include interest, willingness and academic motivation. In South Africa, efforts to improve the quality of education have mostly focused on the provision of physical resources rather than emotional resources.

Aim: The aim of this study was to determine the profile of four factors, namely, teacher style, role models, home environment and peer influence that can influence the academic motivation of grade 6 and 7 learners.

Setting: A parallel-medium primary state school in an urban part of Bloemfontein, Free State.

Methods: This was a cross-sectional observational study. Data were collected using an anonymous, self-administered questionnaire completed by the learners. The questions captured demographic data and measured the four categories of factors.

Results: Overall, 115 out of 202 learners participated (response rate 56.9%). Almost all learners felt that their teachers encouraged them to do their best (96.5%), but 61.3% felt they could not confide in their teachers with personal problems. Most learners had a role model (93.8%), and 70.9% expressed that the role model’s hard work was the reason for their admiration. Most learners felt that they were surrounded by supportive people (83.0%) and had a good study environment at home (80.5%). The majority of learners had a group of friends with whom they felt they belong (90.3%), and they could confide in their best friends with personal problems (61.6%).

Conclusion: Teacher style, peers and home environment scored high as important factors for academic motivation.


Keywords

academic motivation; factors; teacher; role model; home environment; peer

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