Intrinsic versus Extrinsic Motivation

The concepts of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation are used in the fields of education and social psychology. In everyday language, intrinsic motivation is simply another way of saying that people are interested in and enjoy what they are doing. According to the social psychological literature, people are said to be intrinsically motivated when they do an activity for its own sake, not for any extrinsic reward. Extrinsically motivated behaviors are those in which an external controlling factor can be readily identified. If people solve puzzles, play games, or paint pictures for no obvious external reason, they are said to be intrinsically motivated. On the other hand, students who study hard to obtain high grades, employees who work extra hours for pay, and children who ...

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