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Book cover: Advances in Motivation and Achievement

Advances in Motivation and Achievement

ISSN: 0749-7423
Series editor(s): Stuart Karabenick and Timothy C. Urdan

Subject Area: Education

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Current and future directions in teacher motivation research

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Title:Current and future directions in teacher motivation research
Author(s):Paul W. Richardson, Helen M.G. Watt
Volume:16 Editor(s): Timothy C. Urdan, Stuart A. Karabenick ISBN: 978-0-85724-253-2 eISBN: 978-0-85724-254-9
Citation:Paul W. Richardson, Helen M.G. Watt (2010), Current and future directions in teacher motivation research, in Timothy C. Urdan, Stuart A. Karabenick (ed.) The Decade Ahead: Applications and Contexts of Motivation and Achievement (Advances in Motivation and Achievement, Volume 16), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.139-173
DOI:10.1108/S0749-7423(2010)000016B008 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article type:Chapter Item

Educational psychologists have, over the last half century or so, directed their attention to the study of student motivation. While teachers have not entirely been ignored, there has been little inquiry into teacher motivation that has been systematic and theory-driven. The concentration on students has tended to overlook the centrality of teacher motivations as integral to teachers’ goals, beliefs, perceptions, aspirations, and behaviours, and thereby to student motivations and learning. It is perhaps not surprising that those motivation researchers who have developed robust theories in relation to student learning in educational contexts would begin to turn their attention to teachers, to see whether those same theories might have explanatory power with regard to teacher motivations. Teacher self-efficacy research (e.g., Tschannen-Moran & Woolfolk Hoy, 2007; Woolfolk Hoy & Burke-Spero, 2005) has made important contributions to the study of teachers. Motivation researchers are now beginning to turn their attention to other aspects of the complex of motivational factors which demand greater attention and exploration. Robust theoretical frameworks already exist in the motivation literature, which can be applied to guide future research in this area. There has recently been a surge of interest, or what we have elsewhere described as a “Zeitgeist” (Watt & Richardson, 2008a) in applying well-developed theories in motivation research, to the domain of teaching.

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