INFLUENCE OF INTRINSIC AND EXTRINSIC INSPIRATION ON STUDENTS’ WRITING SKILLS PERFORMANCE IN JUNIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS OF KADUNA SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA

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INFLUENCE OF INTRINSIC AND EXTRINSIC INSPIRATION ON STUDENTS’ WRITING SKILLS PERFORMANCE IN JUNIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS OF KADUNA SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA  

ABSTRACT

The study investigated the effect of Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation Strategies on students writing skills performance in junior secondary schools of Kaduna State. Three objectives were raised for the study: to determine the difference between the mean performance scores of students taught writing using Intrinsic Motivation strategies and those not exposed to the strategies, etc. Three research questions and three hypotheses were generated and tested. Quasi – experimental research design was adopted for the study which comprises pre-test and post-test. Junior secondary school students from three government schools made up the population. Purposive and random sampling techniques were used where three schools were selected with a sample of 105 drawn as subjects consisting of treatment and control groups. The instrument used to generate data was the Writing Motivation Ability Test that comprised five essay writing test questions. Instrument for data collection was validated by experts from Language Education Department. Descriptive and Inferential statistics were used to analyse data collected. The statistical tools used were mean, standard deviation, percentages and independent sample t-test analysis. Findings from the study indicated that intrinsic and extrinsic motivational strategies had significant effects on learning and performance towards writing skills. The findings could be useful for researchers and teachers to improve students’ achievement by deriving effective teaching and learning strategies to increase students’ motivation. The study recommends that students should be motivated both internally (intrinsic) and externally (extrinsic) in order to enhance effective learning and acquisition of writing skills.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

                  1.1       Background to the Study

Motivation is seen as a determiner of failure and success which plays crucial role in second language learning process (Vala, and Sanavi, 2015). Motivation is concerned with the factors that influence people to behave in certain ways (Ondabu, 2014). Motivation to learn another language has been a primary research topic recently (Zhang, 2012). Researchers on second language acquisition point out motivation among significant factors which influence individual level of success in any intellectual activity such as language learning (Lifrieri, 2005, as cited in Alqurashi, 2014).   Motivation is a basic component for learning. Without sufficient motivation, individuals with the most remarkable abilities cannot accomplish long term goals. Appropriate curricula and good teaching are neither enough on their own to ensure student achievement (Dörnyei, 2005 quoted in Alqurashi, 2014). Thus, there are two types of Motivation i.e Intrinsic and Extrinsic. Intrinsic motivation refers to the act of engaging in an activity for its own sake, for enjoyment, challenge, interest or natural fulfillment of curiosity (Bariy and Kiy, 2000 quoted on Valeno, 2015). This motivation arises from an inherent desire to learn for self fulfillment enjoyment and to achieve mastering. Extrinsic motivation on the other hand is motivation based on external rewards to the   given task. This refers to the performance of activity or task in order to attain some separable outcome, to achieve some instrumental ends.

Students’ declining academic interest has been tied to a lack of internal desire, or intrinsic motivation. This lack of intrinsic motivation can lead to problems for students

(Crow, 2015). The study of motivation has to do with the processes that energize and direct behavior (Reeve, 2009).  A person who is energized or activated in order to pursue a certain goal or engage in an activity is therefore viewed as motivated . But a person who has no interest to act is regarded as unmotivated. This fundamental quality of motivation to move people into action can also be observed in the Latin root of the word movere, which means to move or be moved (Ryan, Lynch, Vansteenkiste, and Deci, 2010).

The motivational strategies used in this study are the intrinsic and extrinsic motivation strategies. The former refers to engaging in an activity for its own sake, for enjoyment, challenge, interest or natural fulfillment of curiosity (Barry and King, 2000 quoted in Valerio, 2015 ). The latter comes from outside the individual, for example, the offering of incentives for successful task performance (Sternberg and Williams, 2002, cited in Valerio, 2015). It is part of teachers’ pedagogy to help students develop the desire for new knowledge and understandings, known as intrinsic motivation.

Writing in second language (L2) classrooms creates a challenging atmosphere, especially for  beginners and intermediate level students.  Students face dilemma of looking at paper without having any idea of how to translate their thoughts into a coherent and carefully articulated essay. Even with a clear prompt, a grasp on the material, and lots of ideas getting started on any paper can be a challenging. The ability to write is considered essential as a means of developing overall L2 capabilities. Writing specially strengthens the vocabulary and grammar skills encountered in reading and listening activities (Reichelt,

2005 in Gülşah, 2014).  Moreover, it is an important skill used to reinforce learning oflanguage, content, culture and literacy in a second language. However, writing in second language classrooms is often viewed as a way of completing homework assignment (Lally, 2000). But, far from that, writing usually begins with motivation and awareness. Students hardly get motivated especially in an extra-curricular activities, that is why motivation in most times does not go beyond homework assignments. Writing in second language is most often ignored. This gap is most visible when students struggle with writing assignments that require them to address content in addition to mechanics and vocabulary.

Writing has been within use for several thousand years, and nowadays is more important than ever. Having spread steadily over the centuries from clay tablets to computer chips, it is poised for further dramatic advances (Cambridge university press n.d). Writing has been internationally recognized as a sign of competency. “Good writing is the reflection of good critical thinking which entails the ability to understand key concepts and ideas; distinguish the main ideas  and arguments from the subordinate ones; judge their relevance and provide reasons; judge the credibility of sources of information; and be able to paraphrase them and later draw conclusion based on all the justification made (Daud, 2012.

Speaking and writing are both regarded as productive language skills requiring learners to

‘produce’ the language they have learned.

Developing writing skills, for many foreign language learners and teachers, is not an easy task nor can it be adequately accomplished in a short period of time (Çakir, 2010). Writing in Second Language (L2) is even more problematic as it demands a certain amount of the language background knowledge. This involves how the language works in a composition, the necessary connectors to link ideas, the appropriate words to direct the author’s indications (Zacharias, 2007 as cited in Dung Pham, 2015). Therefore, there has been lot of research done for years in relation to L2 writing. This is aimed at minimizing the weaknesses as well as promoting students’ motivation in writing. One of such attempts is providing corrective feedback (CF) towards students’ writings. Writing motivation is a major area in second language learning and teaching” (Mohammad, and Hussein, 2013). Writing motivation, like reading motivation, can be intrinsic or extrinsic such as feedback, reward, positive comments etc. The first comes from inside the student when he/she has the desire to develop the skill of writing. While the second is to be recognized by others as a good writer.

The urge to carry out this study is premised on the fact that most learners in the

Junior Secondary School in Kaduna South Local Government Area (LGA) are:

  1. Inability or lack of interest in writing because they are poorly motivated at school and their homes.
  2. Most learners use short message service (sms) to write text messages on cell phones which is extended to academic writing thereby discouraging writing proficiency.
  3. The proliferation of audio-books discourage students and novice writers from writing or practicing writing, in direct opposite of what motivation seeks to address.
  4. Most often English teachers hardly use motivation strategies in the teaching

of writing,

  1. The controversies surrounding which type of motivation strategy is more effective are yet unresolved. Therefore the need to use motivation strategies such as intrinsic and extrinsic can arouse learners ability in writing and to help them develop rigorous writing skills.

                  1.2       Statement of the Problem

There has been a growing concern among examiners about the spate of poor writing performance in English examinations in Nigeria. This could be as a result of lack of motivation as well as the learners. The quality of learning engagement in the classroom depends on students’ cognitive abilities influenced by complex motivational and affective factors. There has been a growing interest in recent years in studying English language. The number of students seeking admission to read English BA programs is increasing every year (Mahboob and Elyas, 2014).  One of the factors contributing to the rise of admission seekers is the increased recognition of the significance of English as an international language.

Consequently, English Language serves as the proverbial “key to many doors” (Tsai, 2012). Speaking second language in a multi-lingual society such as Nigeria, especially English, is considered as an asset. School children come into contact with a variety of written English words. The contact could be on a daily basis in different situations such as for leisure, reading, entertainment and browsing the web. Despite this, most JS 2 students lack the motivation to write simple essay due to weak expressions, poor organization and inability to present meaningful ideas.

The reasons why students cannot progress smoothly in any academic program can be as a result of the perception that school is boring. Some factors may include feeling unmotivated, facing multiple academic challenges and personal situations (Bridgeland, DiIulio, and Morison, 2006). In this research, an attempt was devoted to an aspect of learning English that is often neglected, i.e. intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Therefore, this study intends to investigate the effects of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation on students’ writing performance junior secondary school students of Kaduna South Local Government

Area.

                  1.3       Objectives of the Study

This study was an exercise focused to investigate Effects of Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation on Student Writing Performance in Junior Schools of Kaduna South LGA. Based on the stated problems of the study, the objectives of the study were to:

  1. find out the difference between the performance of students taught essay writing using intrinsic motivation strategies and those who are not exposed to the strategies.
  2. find the difference between the performance of students taught essay writing using extrinsic motivation strategies and those who are not taught using the strategies.
  3. find the difference between the performance of students taught essay writing

using intrinsic and extrinsic motivation strategies.

                  1.4        Research Questions

This study sets out to answer the following research questions using some selected junior secondary school students in Kaduna South LGA as the research sample:

  1. What is the difference between the performance of students taught essay writing using intrinsic motivation strategies, and those taught not using the strategies?
  2. What is the difference between the performances of students taught essay writing using extrinsic motivation strategies and those taught not using the strategies?
  3. What is the difference between the performance of students taught essay writing using Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation strategies?

                  1.5       Research Hypotheses

The following hypotheses are postulated for this study.

H01: There is no significant difference in the performance of students taught essay writing using intrinsic motivation strategies and those taught not using the strategies.

H02: There is no significant difference in the performances of students’ taught essay writing using extrinsic motivation strategies and those taught not using the strategies. H03: There is no significant difference in the performance of students’ taught essay writing using intrinsic and extrinsic motivation strategies.

                  1.6       Basic Assumptions

The basic assumptions made in respect of this study are as follows:

  1. Motivation as a determiner of failure and success plays crucial role in second language learning process.
  2. Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation strategies will be used in teaching essay writing which will lead to better writing skills performance of students in Kaduna South LGA.
  • Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation teaching strategies will have positive effect on learning. The strategies when used will not only improve writing skills but general written English performance of students in junior secondary schools in Kaduna South LGA.

                  1.7       Significance of the Study

The study is significant to students, educationists, and curriculum planners because it highlights the types and effects of motivation.  In addition, the outcome of this study would avail educators, most especially English language teachers the use and ideas of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. They could integrate these use and ideas into the teaching of writing in our junior secondary schools by extending practical motivation to students.

To educators and policy makers, analyzing students motivation will enable understanding of students expectation, commitment, success and satisfaction in their language classes. The result of the study is expected to enable educators to review causes that may have hindered successful learning in the past. Focus will also be made on students perspective regarding the process of learning second language writing.

The outcome of this study would serve as a platform for curriculum planners to integrate intrinsic and extrinsic motivation strategies into the teaching pedagogy of writing. It could be inculcated in our school curriculum by making it part of Continuous Assessment (CA) marks. This will propel student by re-motivating them to develop interest in writing. It will also stimulate and enhance learners’ curiosity to learn how to write efficiently.

Students exposed to intrinsic and extrinsic motivation strategy in the teaching and learning of writing were equipped with techniques of writing in complex situations. Students academic preference within language learning process will assist ESL teachers and administrators to promote learning motivation. The study would also serve as a source of literature for researchers planning to study motivation strategies through its suggestions for further studies.

1.8    Scope and Delimitation

The scope of the study comprises the total number of JS II students from all Junior Secondary Schools in Kaduna South LGA. They were chosen based on the assumption that they had already acquired enough skills that would prepare them to undertake academic tasks of this nature. The study adopts the quasi-experimental research design because it is class-based study.

The concern of the study is on Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation strategies in the teaching of writing. The aspect of writing this study concentrates on includes content development, expression, organization of essay and mechanical accuracy. These are the key important constituents of writing.

INFLUENCE OF INTRINSIC AND EXTRINSIC INSPIRATION ON STUDENTS’ WRITING SKILLS PERFORMANCE IN JUNIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS OF KADUNA SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA  

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