Motivation of computer based learning across adulthood

Leen E, Lang F (2013)

Publication Language: English

Publication Type: Journal article, Original article

Publication year: 2013


Original Authors: Lang Frieder R., Leen Eline

Publisher: Elsevier

Book Volume: 29

Pages Range: 975-983

Journal Issue: 3

DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2012.12.025


This research investigates learning motivation of young and old adults. In detail, we explore motives of young and old adults to participate in two ICT-course settings: e-learning and face-to-face courses. In a first study young (n = 53, M = 26.0 years) and old (n = 55, M = 69.8 years) participants of e-learning courses completed an online questionnaire on learning motivation and personality. In a second study young (n = 46, M = 26.7 years) and old (n = 57, M = 69.5 years) participants of face-to-face ICT courses completed the same learning motivation questionnaire and questions about personality, subjective age and life satisfaction. Exploratory factor analysis revealed four factors of learning motivation: belonging, instrumentality, personal growth, and competition. As expected, older adults expressed stronger motives of belonging and personal growth, and thus expressed a stronger interest in self-determined and intrinsic learning. Young adults, in contrast, strongly endorsed competitive-related motives of learning. Instrumentality was influenced by the interaction of age and subjective age; older participants showed higher instrumentality when the difference between chronological age and subjective age is big. Findings of this study shed new light on assumptions of socioemotional selectivity theory. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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How to cite


Leen, E., & Lang, F. (2013). Motivation of computer based learning across adulthood. Computers in Human Behavior, 29(3), 975-983.


Leen, Eline, and Frieder Lang. "Motivation of computer based learning across adulthood." Computers in Human Behavior 29.3 (2013): 975-983.

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