Motivation is a very powerful tool in the hands of an industrious person. Motivation fuels the desire to tackle the big and small demands of a goal that you are trying to accomplish. More importantly, in everyday living, motivation reflects the effort, work ethic, and pride in the task that has been accomplished. Studying, for example, is considered something that is done solely to earn a living However, the motivations for going to school and learning a trade are both extrinsic and intrinsic.

Extrinsic, or external,motivations for studying vary depending on each person’s circumstance. Parents who desire a better life for their children might attend school for years to earn an advanced degree that gives them more income, thereby achieving for the family a certain financial security and class mobility for their children. Children with parents who earned a degree are sometimes motivated to attend college because their primary role models have also attended college. In fact, college-educated parents strongly encourage their children to earn a degree because some form of formal education, in most cases, guarantees the child a good future with a comfortable job. For others, opening a business with the knowledge that they have gained while attending school is another possible motivator in studying in a particular field. For example, a person might earn a degree in accounting and then become certified in the hope of becoming a self-employed certified publicaccountant. In all, earning money is the extrinsic motivator in getting an education.

The other type of motivating factor for studying is intrinsic, or it comes from within. These people who choose a field of study do so for the sheer love of the subject. They would gladly get an education in a particular field, regardless of the salary or perks of the job. One common example of the way that this type of motivation works is in teaching. Some educators become teachers because they have a love for the craft, and they are rewarded when their students master a skill or excel in some area of their education. However, in the US, teaching is one of those professions that requires more dedication in relationship to the compensation, which some might find paltry. The internal reward is the motivation to help people learn, and this motivation fuels a person’s passion to teach or to work in education.Another intrinsic reason that people are motivated to study is the need to constantly learn.People who are motivated in this way find themselves enrolled in classes in a number of subjects, all in the quest to quench this desire to learn. Some find taking classes and studying as motivation for self-improvement or as motivation for achieving personal goals. With intrinsic motivations, the student is in the classroom for more than just earning a credit toward a degree.Instead, the person finds studying a fun and exciting way to continue to grow and develop. In this way, learning is a journey through a subject that they are trying to master, and this journey is about attaining knowledge to use for personal reasons not always tied to earning money.

Regardless of the reasons why people decide to study, whether it is intrinsic or extrinsic, there are many paths that potential students can take to gain knowledge. The traditional path involves attending any one of the numerous colleges and universities to earn a bachelor’s degree, and then if desired, at some point down the road, a master’s degree. Those with extrinsic reasons for attending a program in business might attend an online program at the University of Alabama (UAB Online), for example, allowing them to earn money while they complete their degree. Those who have an intrinsic desire to learn might find themselves enrolling in classes through an extension program at the same university. For this class of student, the priority is studying something of interest as opposed to finding a field where they can make money. These classes allow the individual to gain knowledge without earning college credit and are often much cheaper than courses offered in the traditional program.

People are motivated to study for a variety of reasons. Whether the person’s motivations are extrinsic or intrinsic, an education benefits the person because it exposes them to information and experiencesthat they would not have had they not enrolled in the program. People attend college to make money after graduation or because they have a thirst for knowledge. In the end, all of society benefits from both types through the fruit of the students’ effort, discipline, and dedication to learning.