Maintaining Motivation: Educational Goals Essay

1566 words - 7 pages

As many of us near our senior year of high school we all begin to think seriously about pursuing our education further and what we want to come of it. This is also the time when we pick a major and sometimes incorporate graduate school into our future goals. These educational goals that we form at an early age reflect our desires most truly because we have yet to be discouraged by hardly anything. However, the downside is that in many cases rising college students don’t realize all that entails reaching the goals they have set for themselves. As a result, many students falter in their pursuit towards the original set goal. There are several common ways in which students deviate from the ...view middle of the document...

With respect to the fact that many students drop out of college for reasons not under their control; those who consider dropping out due to loss of motivation should consider the importance of a college education today in order to efficiently weigh out their options. The U.S. Census Bureau has determined that a college graduate earns over 1 million dollars more than a high school graduate in a life time (Giving Up On College Is Not An Option, 2006). Although money may not be a source for happiness it supplies you with the necessary resources that can enable you to achieve other goals that directly inspire happiness. However, keeping sight of the benefits to come from an education will not entirely inspire you to continue on the road towards achievement without the presence of autonomous opportunities. This idea suggests that you are more likely to succeed in a higher education setting if you were autonomous in your decision of which college to attend. Parents should allow their children to be fully involved in this decision. Furthermore, students that choose to continue their education often switch out of their desired major one or more times. Research has shown that choosing the wrong major is the most frequently identified life regret for Americans (Beggs, Bantham, & Taylor, 2008). Autonomy comes into play again in this case because it has been determined that many students chose their major based on people that they know in the same major (Beggs, Bantham, & Taylor, 2008). Time commitment, resources, and interests should be a main factor in choosing a major because it will avoid the likelihood of a switch. When you change your major in college it is often causes you to lose track of your initial goal. The importance of setting a goal and sticking to your plan to achieve it is significant in this particular scenario. In addition, many students include graduate school in their plans towards achieving a certain career goal. However, a significant amount of students reach the end of the undergraduate program and opt out of applying to a graduate program. Many students that decide not to pursue graduate school regret the decision in years to come and will then return at a later age (Whitaker, 2000). The chart below displays the full-year wage and salary of workers between the ages of 25-34 from 1980-2008. There is a noticeable increasing gap between those receiving a high school diploma versus those with Bachelor’s degrees and higher.
The Goal-Setting theory according to Reeves states that difficult goals energize behavior and, therefore, increases the performer’s effort and persistence. This particular theory can be applied to any scenario involving the pursuit of an academic goal. As a student, when you set a goal that is not very challenging it is more likely that you will not achieve it, however; this concept is relative to each individual. For example, a high school graduate must choose an education path with a degree of difficulty that...

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