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Infinite Blog Choices: Is too much choice a bad thing?

December 18, 2013

 With the blogging assessments the range of topics we could write about were infinite- we could write about anything, providing we related it back to emotion and motivation. Giving students choice about topics has often been viewed as positive. By giving students the choice of topic they can pick what they are interested in with the hope that it will spur intrinsic motivation to learn (Deci,1972). Intrinsic learning has been found to be the best form of motivation (Heymen & Dweck, 1992).

However, research has shown that too much choice can actually be detrimental to a students performance (Iyengar & Lepper, 2000). Students were given an assignment which would give them extra credit for their university course. Half were given a choice of 6 essay titles and the other a choice of 30. The results found that those given the fewer choice were more likely to do the assignment and the quality of essays were also better. Students also reported greater satisfaction with the limited choice option. Other researchers also found that choice can be a good thing, as long as there’s not too much choice (Patall, Cooper & Robinson, 2008).

I find this extremely relevant to my blog writing assignments. When writing my blog I would spend a lot of time deciding on and researching what to write my blog on. After a while I would get overwhelmed by the amount of choice and of trying to find a choice I am interested in. This would therefore leave me feeling stressed so I would end my feelings of stress by settling for a topic I was not satisfied with nor interested in. I do not feel my blogs reflect the quality of work I could potentially achieve. More direction of a topic would narrow down the choice and enable me to write a blog I would be proud of.

References

Deci, E. L. (1972). Intrinsic motivation, extrinsic reinforcement, and inequity. Journal of personality and social psychology, 22(1), 113.

 Heyman, G. D., & Dweck, C. S. (1992). Achievement goals and intrinsic motivation: Their relation and their role in adaptive motivation. Motivation and Emotion, 16(3), 231-247.

Iyengar, S. S., & Lepper, M. R. (2000). When choice is demotivating: Can one desire too much of a good thing?. Journal of personality and social psychology, 79(6), 995.

 Patall, E. A., Cooper, H., & Robinson, J. C. (2008). The effects of choice on intrinsic motivation and related outcomes: a meta-analysis of research findings. Psychological bulletin, 134(2), 270.

 

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