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Identifying motivational strategies to engage undergraduate learning in web-based instruction

, Capella University, United States

Capella University . Awarded


Increased access to the Internet and online technologies has allowed a growing number of students to take part in college courses online. Participants in these courses tend not to be as motivated to engage in learning with the same thoroughness as they do in a classroom-based course. This study investigates strategies that are perceived as motivating to undergraduate college students in web-based learning environments.

A sample of 248 undergraduate college learners completed a survey to identify the instructional elements perceived as influential in supporting their motivation to engage and persist in learning in web-based courses.

Participants indicated a preference for well organized, professional looking courses with easy access to material. These attributes and the addition of visual elements such as graphics were responsible for capturing their attention and motivating them to engage and persist in course activities. Participants also stated that having an involved instructor in the course who values the student’s position and offers feedback pertaining to performance and success encourages the students to persist in their course activities. Additionally, the participants distinguished the importance of understanding the relevance of the course materials as well as the application of the subject matter in real-world situations. Students indicated that they were less likely to begin and complete tasks that are seemingly impossible.

The perceptions of learners have an important message for instructional designers. Addressing the motivational needs of learners through course materials can enhance students’ ability to succeed through increased engagement and persistence in learning. Designers of web-based instruction should consider the motivational needs of the learners.


Glore, P.R. Identifying motivational strategies to engage undergraduate learning in web-based instruction. Ph.D. thesis, Capella University. Retrieved October 23, 2019 from .

This record was imported from ProQuest on October 22, 2013. [Original Record]

Citation reproduced with permission of ProQuest LLC.

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