Theories of Motivation

This paper will act as an introduction to a longer paper (Lit Review on Self Determination Theory)

The paper needs to:
1) Describe what CONTENT and PROCESS Theories are AND Differentiate between the two.
2) Distill the basic salient points from the following theories: CONTENT THEORIES: Maslow’s theory of the Hierarchy of Needs, Alderfer’s ERG Theory, McClelland’s Achievement Motivation Theory, Herzberg’s Motivation-Hygiene Theory, PROCESS THEORIES: Skinner’s Reinforcement Theory, Adam’s Equity Theory of Motivation, Vrooms Expectancy Theory, Locke’s Goal-Setting Theory.

EX: There are two important types of motivation theory: content and process. Content models of motivation focus on what people need in their lives (i.e. what motivates them). Process theories look at the psychological and behavioral processes that affect and individual’s motivation.


Use in INTRO:

Acquah, A., Nsiah, T. K., Antie, E. N. A., & Otoo, B. (2021). Literature Review on Theories of Motivation. EPRA International Journal of Economic and Business Review, 9(5), 25-29.

Ball, B. (2012). A summary of motivation theories. Retrieved on www. yourcoach. be> uploads, 3.

Baumeister, R. F. (2016). Toward a general theory of motivation: Problems, challenges, opportunities, and the big picture. Motivation and Emotion, 40(1), 1-10.

Baumeister, R. F., & Vohs, K. D. (2007). SelfRegulation, ego depletion, and motivation. Social and personality psychology compass, 1(1), 115-128.

Lewin, K. (1930). From social psychology and personality theory. Organizational Behavior 1: Essential Theories of Motivation and Leadership, 37.

Neill, J. (2002). What is motivation?

Reeve, J. (2016). A grand theory of motivation: Why not?. Motivation and Emotion, 40(1), 31-35.


Alderfer, C. P. (1969). An empirical test of a new theory of human needs. Organizational behavior and human performance, 4(2), 142-175.

Alderfer, C. P. (1989). Theories reflecting my personal experience and life development. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 25(4), 351-365.

Healy, K. (2016). A theory of human motivation by Abraham H. Maslow (1942). The British Journal of Psychiatry, 208(4), 313-313.

Herzberg, F. (2005). The motivation-hygiene theory. Organizational behavior one: Essential theories of motivation and leadership, eds JB Miner, ME Sharpe Inc, New York, 2(4), 61-74.

Maslow, A. H. (1958). A Dynamic Theory of Human Motivation.

Maslow, A. (1974). A theory of human motivation. Lulu. com.

McClelland, D. (2005). Achievement motivation theory. Organizational behavior: Essential theories of motivation and leadership, 46-60.

Osemeke, M., & Adegboyega, S. (2017). Critical Review and Comparism between Maslow, Herzberg and McClelland’s Theory of Needs. Funai journal of accounting, business and finance, 1(1), 161-173.


Adams, J. S. (2005). Equity theory. Organizational behavior I: Essential theories of motivation and leadership, 134-159.

Gordan, M., & Krishanan, I. A. (2014). A review of BF Skinners Reinforcement theory of motivation. International Journal of Research in Education Methodology, 5(3), 680-688.

Locke, E. A., & Latham, G. P. (2012). Goal setting theory. In Motivation: Theory and research (pp. 23-40). Routledge.

Locke, E. A., & Latham, G. P. (2006). New directions in goal-setting theory. Current directions in psychological science, 15(5), 265-268.

Skinner, B. F. (1958). Reinforcement today. American Psychologist, 13(3), 94.

Vroom, V., Porter, L., & Lawler, E. (2005). Expectancy theories. Organizational behavior, 1, 94-113.

***IF other references are identified and noteworthy, by all means add them in. We can discuss this during the writing process…

If the paper needs to be longer, we can discuss that also- NOT too long thought- this is an intro to a Lit Review on a related topic.