Week 4: Social Cognitive Views of Learning and Motivation

3 things I learned:

  1. Self-regulation

Self-regulation is one of the goals for teachers to assist our students so that they can foster better, because this has a lot to do with learning process. This concept includes being able to use knowledge, motivation, and volition, which would result in positive outcomes and ultimately, being successful in one’s life. I believe that this can be achieved not only through schooling, but also at home, and any other social circumstances that a child faces throughout his/her life.


  1. Types of motivations

I learned the terms of ‘intrinsic motivation’ and ‘extrinsic motivation’. Among these two, extrinsic motivation was particularly interesting to me because this is where the environment influence is being a part of. An example of this would be the use of rewards, prizes, consequences or punishments, which all are commonly used in school, as well as at home. Also, I think that not only children are being motivated by these factors, so are adults. Because the work people do in the real world is often regulated by both intrinsic and extrinsic world.

I know that some people value intrinsic motivation over extrinsic motivation, because it would be more rewarding and offer a deeper sense of achievement than the extrinsic does. Certainly, there would be pros and cons on both sides. However, I wonder if intrinsic motivation has to be more preferred than extrinsic motivation when it comes to teaching?


  1. Children begin the process of learning with observation

I believe that this is one of the most important elements in terms of social cognitive theory because it includes learning from modelling as well as thoughts, beliefs, expectations, and judgments. In other words, humans start learning by observing from the moment we are born while developing the various senses, then enhance their learning processes throughout lives, which means that social cognitive theory explains adaptation, learning and motivation. It is a fundamental method of learning that can be found in all areas.


2 connections I made:

The connection I made is regarding self-efficacy. As mentioned in the lecture, there are multiple influences on this concept and its development, including family, teachers, peers, any other contacts that a child may experience in his/her life. I remember when I was younger, I experienced developing self-efficacy by influences from family and teacher: I was a very shy and quite child and had a low self-confidence, which had led to a low self-efficacy especially if a task needed to be accomplished in public. Then, my mother encouraged me to join in school music band to in a hope of developing self-confidence, which, needless to say, I absolutely hated at first because I did not believe that I could play an instrument in public while collaborating with others. I thought I would be terrible and cause a trouble to the team. However, both my mother and the teacher believed in me and gave encouragement, and I became able to play the marimba quite pretty well, and our band ended up winning a prize at a local contest. With this experience, I developed self-efficacy in terms of music, which got me to major in music later, when I was in my first college in Korea. As such, I believe that our job as educators is very crucial not only in academic context, but also in children’s journey of developing themselves.


Another connection I made has to do with social cognitive theory. As mentioned above, observation plays a significant role in this field. This fact got me to think about the importance of teacher in the classroom because students not only learn what we teach, but also learn from observing their teachers. Also, I think that this would have more influence on younger children, and as I am hoping to work with young children in the future, this makes me more passionate about becoming a better teacher who can bring positive impact on my future students.


1 Question to think:

I kind of threw it around the discussion about the different types of motivation, so I will rewrite again: Should intrinsic motivation be more encouraged than extrinsic motivation when it comes to learning? If yes, how should we better foster?



Woolfolk, Winne & Perry. (2016). Chapter 11: Social Cognitive View of Learning and Motivation. In Educational Psychology. (6th Ed.). (pp. 367-397). Toronto, ON: Pearson.


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