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Background to the Study

The teaching-learning process is a means through which the teacher, the learner, the curriculum and other variables are organized in a systematic manner to attain predetermined goals and objectives (Basavanthappa, 2009). It implies that all the elements of the teaching-learning situations have to be brought into an intelligible whole. Structure of teaching consists of three variables which include; teacher-independent variable, student/learner-dependent variable, content and strategies for presentation-intervening variable (Basavanthappa, 2009). In nursing, learning occurs within a framework of influential factors that affect the character, quality and effectiveness of an educational programme of an institution (Iheanacho, 2014). These influential factors include the philosophy of the institution, the type of administration, the learner, faculty, types of patients, interests and problems of the community and collective beliefs of those involved in the education programme (Iheanacho, 2014). The teachers, being the focal figure in education must be competent and knowledgeable in order to impart the knowledge they could give to their students (Barberos, Gozalo, & Padayogdog, 2013).


Good teaching is a very personal attribute (Basavanthappa, 2009). Effective teaching is concerned with the student as a person and with his general development. The teacher must recognize individual differences among his/her students and adjust instructions that are best suitable to the learners. It is always a fact that educators play varied and vital roles in the classroom. Teachers are considered as the light in the classroom. They are entrusted with so many responsibilities that range from the very simple to most complex and very challenging job. It is very necessary that they need to understand the need to be motivated in doing their work well so as to carry the students along in the classroom. Some students seem naturally enthusiastic about learning, but many need or expect their instructors to inspire, challenge, and stimulate them. Effective learning in the classroom depends on the teacher’s ability to maintain the interest that brought students to the course in the first place (Hardell, 2011). When students are motivated, then learning would easily take place.

Motivation is a process that arouses, channels and gives people’s behavior purpose and direction (Magda & Manal, 2015). It is concerned with why people behave the way they do, under certain condition or stimuli (Okoronkwo, 2005).  Motivation is of particular interest to educational psychologist because of the crucial role it plays in students learning (Cassandra, 2005). Motivation is not something one “does to” others, rather, efforts to motivate students involve first connecting with their interests and their concerns, then broadening these with expanded significant choices, and gradually increasing participants’ empowerment to meet these new aspirations (Theall, 2007). Motivation is the process of supplying the incentives which will encourage, inspire and influence student to act in a desired behavior to achieve a desired goal (Hanover, 2002 in Magda & Manal, 2015).


Furthermore, motivation has been seen as a set of forces that energize, direct, and sustain behavior (Hit, Black & Porter, 2005). These forces can come from the person, so-called “Push” of internal forces, or they can come from the environment that surrounds the person, so-called “pull” of external forces. Motivation thus is to give reason, incentive, enthusiasm, or interest that causes a specific action or certain behavior (Wendy, 2008). A learner’s motivation is one of the key factors that determine success in learning. Teachers can motivate students by; giving frequent, early, positive feedback that supports students’ beliefs that they can do well; ensuring opportunities for students’ success by assigning tasks that are neither too easy nor too difficult; helping students’ add personal meaning and value in the material; creating an atmosphere that is open and positive; and helping students feel that they are valued members of a learning community (Pyle 2007 in Magda & Manal, 2015).


Freeman, Anderman & Jensen (2012) identified four categories of motivational strategies; generating initial motivation, rounding off the learning experience, maintaining and protecting motivation, and creating the basic motivational conditions.   Evidence has shown that  becoming a role model for student interest; delivering presentations with energy and enthusiasm; displaying motivation; showing passion for subject; making the course personal and showing interest in the material; getting to know students; etc are strategies for motivating students to learn (Pintrich, 2012). One of the main importances of motivation is to increase morale of students (Naeem, 2008). Motivated students will always think positively and act accordingly in everything they do. It plays a major role in nearly everything. Without motivation, students would simply not care about outcomes, means, accomplishment, learning, success, failure, e.t.c. (Wendy, 2008). Better motivation leads to all sorts of positive behavior. Motivated students tend to work harder, be less stressed, take more care in their duties, be less likely to leave their schools or studies, look for opportunities to improve the processes with which they work and much more. But in the end, all of these add up to one thing, improved learning (Manktel, 2007).


Doyle and Moeyn (2008) in their research noted that negative motivation (i.e. use of bad grades by teachers) as a method of getting students to work failed. Instead progressive approaches with focus on positive motivation over punishment have produced greater effectiveness with learning since anxiety interferes with performance of complex tasks. However, motivating students to learn requires a very challenging role on the part of the teacher. It requires a variety of motivational strategies or techniques just to capture students’ interests. Above all, the teacher must himself come into possession of adequate knowledge of the objectives and standards of the curriculum, skills in teaching, interests, appreciation and ideals (Barberos, Gozalo & Padayogdog, 2013).


Researchers have made several recommendations for educators interested in supporting students’ motivation, including the limited use of rewards, using rewards to provide information about competence, increasing student autonomy and choice using collaborative or cooperative learning methods, and creating a supportive classroom environment with respect to goal, structures, attributions and external evaluation. (Guthrie, 2000, & Pintrich, 2003). Use of motivational strategies in nursing education can have several effects on students ‘academic performances. If students are not motivated to learn, they are most likely not involved in the lesson and if they are not involved in the lesson they are much more likely to cause classroom management problems (Hanifi, Parvizy & Joolaee, 2012).

Hence the focus of this study is knowledge and use of motivational strategies in teaching-learning process among teachers in nursing programmes in selected states south-east zone, Nigeria.


Statement of Problem

Motivational forces are basic determinants of behavior (Hanifi, Parvisy & Jooalaee, 2012). Learners must be aroused sufficiently to appreciate the value of education and to work steadily towards the achievement of their goals. In other words, motivated students contribute to a nursing institution survival (Basavanthappa, 2009). It is well known that highly motivated students have a lower rate of absenteeism than bored or de-motivated students (Hanifi, Parvisy & Jooalaee, 2012)


The major aim of nursing education is to motivate nurses to acquire skills for offering appropriate quality health care services to patients with multiple complex health problems (Hanifi, Parvizy & Joolaee, 2012). Achieving this has challenged academic institutions for a long time.   In recent times, there seem to be general poor performances in the Nursing & Midwifery Council of Nigeria final qualifying examinations. This is evidenced in the poor percentage passes recorded by many schools in the South-East geopolitical zone of the country. In almost all the schools of Nursing and Midwifery in the South-East Zone, the researcher observed that during the schools’ yearly admission processes, many students are selected and admitted into the nursing program as Preliminary Training Session (P.T.S) Students. Most of these students eventually do not make it to the final year, for instance, in schools of Nursing Iyi-Enu Ogidi and Nkpor all in Anambra State, about one hundred (100) students were admitted at a given time each year (School Admission Records, 2013). At the long run, the number of students that go in for the final qualifying examination is reduced to almost one quarter. The result chart of the school of Nursing Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi showed the poor performances of the November 2004, May 2006 and 2009 Council examinations, it recorded 44%, 47% and 40% respectively.


During some interrogative sessions by the researcher with some students of school of nursing NAUTH Nnewi, the researcher gathered that most students prefer spending more time in the clinical areas than in the classroom. They attributed this to the ample time, leisure, duty off they enjoy while in the clinical areas.  The researcher also observed that many students show lack of interest in their academic work hence when they are given assignments like term papers or any take home work, they tend to copy or reproduce either their friends or other people’s work and submit as their own.  Could the recently observed low academic performances of nursing students be attributed to the students’ inadequate motivation or lack of interest? Or that the teachers do not apply appropriate motivational strategies in the teaching-learning process? If they do, to what extent do they apply such motivational strategies?  Attempt to answer these questions prompted the researcher to study on the knowledge and use of motivational strategies in teaching-learning process among teachers in nursing programmes in the South-East, Nigeria.


Purpose of the study

To determine the teachers’ knowledge and use of motivational strategies in teaching – learning process in nursing programmes in selected states south-east Nigeria.


Objectives of the study are to:

  1. Determine teachers’ knowledge of the concept of motivational strategies used in teaching – learning process.
  2. Determine teachers’ knowledge of various motivational strategies that are applicable in teaching-learning process.
  3. Determine teachers’ use of motivational strategies in teaching-learning process.
  4. Determine the factors that influence the teachers’ use of motivational strategies in the teaching-learning process.





Research Questions 

  1. What are motivational strategies in teaching-learning process?
  2. What are various motivational strategies applicable in teaching-learning process?
  3. What are those motivational strategies teachers use in teaching-learning process?
  4. What factors influence the teachers’ use of motivational strategies in teaching-learning process?


Ho1    There will be no significant relationship between knowledge and use of motivational strategies among teachers in the teaching-learning process.

Ho2    There will be no significant difference in the knowledge of motivational strategies according to teaching experience.

Ho3    There will be no significant difference in the use of motivational strategies according to teaching experience.

Ho4    There will be no significant difference in the knowledge of motivational strategies between male and female teachers.

H o5 There will be no significant difference in the use of motivational strategies between male and female teachers.


Significance of the Study

The finding will reveal the extent teachers apply motivational strategies in the classroom during their interactions with the students. This will go a long way in shaping the lives of these students positively, as they eventually learn to become independent, critical thinkers and good students/polyvalent nurses. Also, the students will have the opportunity of being exposed to variety of teaching techniques as with their counterparts in other institutions of learning. ie, it will improve quality of nursing education and consequently produce effective professional nurses and develop the quality of nursing care rendered in the society at large.

Finally, the findings will assist in further studies.




Scope of the Study

This study will be limited to all registered nurses working full-time in various schools/departments of nursing in the selected states under study to determine their knowledge and use of motivational strategies in the teaching- learning process in nursing programmes.


Operational Definition of Terms

Motivational Strategies: Specific measures/ techniques employed by the teachers to enable students’ participation in teaching-learning process which help the students to learn better and faster in order to achieve the set educational goals.

Knowledge of motivational strategies: This is the information the teachers have about the different ways students could be motivated in order to learn better and faster so as to achieve a desired teaching-learning process. Level of knowledge can be measured as good, fair and poor.

Use of motivational strategies: Ways/extent the teachers apply different motivational measures to enable students’ participation in teaching-learning process to achieve desired outcome.

Teachers: These are Registered nurses who maintain classroom interactions with the students in nursing training institutions such as nurse educators, clinical instructors and lecturers. Such training institution include: Schools of Nursing owed by mission or Government and Departments of Nursing Sciences in the Universities.

Nursing Programme: Any educational programme designed for the training of nurses as approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria. It is run in both Universities and basic schools of Nursing.