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Goals and Motivation for High School Students

            High school students can be motivated to complete their classes successfully by placing more value on evaluation of learning goals rather performance goal (grades). When a student is evaluated or assessed based on reaching a learning goal instead of grades only, they are more successful. The student completes the course of study with a sense of accomplishment and pride. Motivation is the combination of these three factors; desire, values, and beliefs, which drives you to take action. One of the ways to motivate a high school student and keep them motivated through a task is to use the three factors to establish realistic goals (University of Iowa, 2015). Goal setting is a method of motivating students because simply having a particular end target to aim for may propel students to work harder. Students can be motivated by either setting performance goals or learning goals.
             Performance goal is the most commonly used to assess student achievement. This goal setting is a tool that is appropriate when the students already have the skills and knowledge to reach the goal (Lange, 2015). However, according to Lange, performance goals are not a good fit for individuals who want to move to a higher skill level such as high school students. A high school student progresses from lower grade to higher grade classes with more mentally challenging subjects. For students to meet such competencies they must learn new skills and these can be achieved by setting learning goals.
             Learning goals involve a desire to acquire new skills, gain mastery of new tasks and understand the new concept (Reilly, 2007). These goals will foster learning that will encourage a would-be high school dropout because there is always a learning opportunity, and this prevents boredom. Boredom is one of the reasons high school students do not finish their courses. A report by Civic Enterprises in association with Peter D. Hart Research Associates for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation said that 47% of high school dropout[SB9] responded in the survey that they were bored.

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