Ezra Cohen Montreal - Intro To Psychology Christine Blain-Arcaro

Ezra Cohen Montreal

Recently after many schools in the Virginia school district desegregated the student population in 1971, Herman Boone, played by Denzel Washington is tasked with leading the T.C Williams High School football program back to a championship. Interestingly, Boone replaced Bill Yoast who was being primed for entry into the Virginia High School Football Hall of Fame… As a show of admiration and genuine respect for his older counterpart, Boone offered Yoast an assistant coaching position. Yoast rejected. However, shortly thereafter, many white athletes vowed to desert the team had Yoast not participated, urging him to reconsider. Consequently, some white players still decided to leave, further complicating the dynamics of an already predominantly white football team. The desertion of white players thrusted many black players into crucial roles. Initially, there was a strong division between the players of different races; stimulatingregular clashes in training camp. However, after rigorous conditioning, the team transitioned into a brotherhood, which showed their homogeneity and camaraderie. Ezra Cohen Montreal

There is more to life than just satisfying our hunger and sexual needs. Everyone has different psychological motivations that distinguish themselves from the rest of the crowd. As for the selected topic, which contrasts the differences in motivation, the movie Remember the Titansdepictsseveral instances of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. It is easy to become confused between the different forms of incentives, as threats and rewards can change intrinsic motivation into extrinsic motivation. This misunderstanding stems from whether the activity is performed with genuine personal interest for self-improvement, or whether it is to receive a reward or avoid punishment.Therefore, in this essay, the disparity between the two will be exposed with the help of examples from the movie. There are many characters involved in the explanation, however, the most central include running back Petey Jones and head coach Boone. Ezra Cohen Montreal

As defined in the text, intrinsic motivation is a motivation to take actions that are themselves rewarding. These behaviours are stimulated and driven by internal rewards. (Schacter et al., 2015, P.260). For example, someone working very arduously in the workplace, staying after closing time, going above and beyond every basic demand is intrinsically motivated to ameliorate his craft for the sake of knowledge alone. This is displayed through the behaviourof Petey Jones. Petey can be seen on multiple occasions practicing his footwork meticulously, watching copious amounts of unassigned game film and running his routes incessantly. Evidently, there will be no immediate payoff, and this was in the pursuit of self-betterment. This is an example of conscious motivation, as Jones knew precisely what needed improvement. The need for achievement, which is the motivation to solve worthwhile problems, (McClleland et al., 1953) was definitely present. Jones believed that elevating his game to an advanced level would garner respect and end the debate that black people cannot play football as well as whites could. In addition, with all of the laborious and gruelling work that Jones put in; he exhibited traits of the ‘approach motivation’, which is a motivation to experience a positive outcome. (Davidson et al., 1990; Gray, 1990. P.262). He believed that through rigorous conditioning and practice, the team would dominate, and in the process forge an inseparable bond that would end the hate towards black athletes within the school.

On the other side of the spectrum sits extrinsic motivation, which can be defined as a motivation to take actions that are not themselves rewarding but lead to reward. This type of motivation is problematic because it requires the use of incentives, which whether good or bad, place an added pressure on performing the task. People are focused and driven by external factors which they hope will provide a tangible and measurable result, and often, if the task results in failure, there will be some type of punishment.  In the movie, Boone placed a great emphasis on perfection… “You miss a pass, you run a mile, you miss a blocking assignment, and you run a mile. You fumble the football, and I will break your John Brown hind parts… And then, you will run a mile”. This is an example of extrinsic motivation because the practice will hopefully translate into wins and ultimately, perfection. However, some argue that implementing harsh punishments can actually be detrimental to success. This is because people are not given a chance to learn from mistakes, they are just castigated for their inaction or inability. The conscious motivation is evidently attaining wins, but the unconscious motivation is to strengthen the team bond and to embrace desegregation. In addition, the team has a collective interest in pursuing ‘Avoidance motivation’, which influences them to work extremely hard in order not to experience a negative outcome, which would be a loss. Ezra Cohen Montreal

Finally, the team’s constant success can be attributed to both intrinsic and extrinsic motivations. Although they differ substantially, these two types of motivations can be coupled to illustrate the idea that different types of incentives will successfully produce varying results. However, there must either be a genuine effort placed or a tangible reward. As mentioned before, it is interesting to note when intrinsic motivations become extrinsic. According to the text, when day-care centers implemented a penalty for late pickups, the number of late pickups actually increased. (Gneezy &Rustichini 2000. –P.261).Parents are intrinsically motivated to pick up their kids; the immediate reward is seeing their children, so usually they will be punctual. However, when the penalty was implemented parents became extrinsically incentivized to fetch their kids from school.Surprisingly, this increased tardy pickups since the penalty was unsubstantial.Therefore, introducing threats and penalties can actually have the reverse intended effect due to the change in motivation. Ezra Cohen Montreal

 

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