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This is how our TEFL graduates feel they have gained from their course, and how they plan to put into action what they learned:
Arguably, the single most important factor in successful learning is motivation. Students beginning a class can be said to bring a certain level of motivation to the class. During the course or class, the level of this motivation will fluctuate for various reasons including praise, purpose, achievement, fear of failure and a lack of stimulation. While the factor that effects motivation may be different for each student, the teacher can certainly aid in increasing the motivation of students by applying a keen sense of awareness coupled with an appropriate reaction. In order to enhance motivation, one first needs to know what motivates. This may be achieved by direct or indirect questioning such as asking the student what interests them or why they are taking a course. If they chose to take a course, then the reason for taking the course could be a key to motivating them. Of course having a purpose does not ensure that one stays motivated. The environment in which one spends their time learning can also aid in motivation. It can be demotivating (and therefore should be avoided) to learn in an environment that is too noisy, has an uncomfortable temperature, has military style authority, has no humour, has an unmotivated teacher, has no structure or boundaries and does not show progress. To increase student motivation a teacher can try to add variety to lessons so that monotony is avoided. Using authentic material can aid in helping students feel as if they are using there learned language in real life situations which in turn gives them a sense of accomplishment. After all they are learning the language in order to understand real world situations. Having a structure that is constantly revised can also aid in motivation as students will notice when they have remembered a certain language point during revision, especially if praise is given at this point. Using a variety of stimuli such as audio, video, computers, books, images & games can help to keep interest and add excitement to a class. Falling into a routine can be beneficial for learning as repetition can be a great teacher for some students, however it can also be demotivating and boring for others. Sitting for long periods of time without moving can also be demotivating and result in tiredness and lethargy. During a class, it can aid motivation to have the class stand up and move around during a fun activity. Adding a little humour to a class is never a bad thing however having no humour at all can be detrimental to increasing motivation. In conclusion, it is safe to say that if a student finds the learning process more enjoyable, stimulating and relevant, then their motivation levels will be increased and their learning will be boosted by this motivation. Conversely, if a student becomes demotivated then their learning may become impeded. It is clear that the environment in which one learns can greatly affect there motivation and so it is the role of the teacher not only to teach, but to keep students motivated and help them progress with their learning as much as possible.