Author: Deb Avery | Published on 1 December 2022


Question: What motivates adolescents to learn? 

Answer: Although the teacher matters, there are several other important factors as well. 

Factors which can motivate teenagers to learn include:

  • Extrinsic motivation, like exams and parents’ expectations
  • Peer pressure and relationships
  • Intrinsic motivation, like self-esteem
  • Their interest in the topics

How can you build a relationship with teenagers that motivates and promotes learning?   

  • Know the learners’ names
  • Listen (genuinely) to their views and opinions
  • Design lessons at the right level of interest
  • Use real-life texts and situations
  • Use humour
  • Don’t treat them like children 

How will you motivate your adolescent learners?


Adolescents: teenagers

Extrinsic motivation: behavior that is driven by external rewards

Peer pressure: the direct or indirect influence on peers

Intrinsic motivation: actions that are driven by internal rewards

Self esteem: how we value and perceive ourselves