Motivation and Engagement of Learners in Organizations

  • Christof NägeleEmail author
  • Barbara E. Stalder
Reference work entry


Learning in the workplace is crucial for vocational education and training. Every organization should support its employees to learn and to develop their competencies throughout their working life. Most jobs and workplaces have great potential to motivate individuals and let them become engaged in non-formal or informal learning activities. This potential is, however, not always fully used. Not all companies are prepared to offer everybody suitable training and learning opportunities, and some individuals lack the motivation to engage in learning. We propose a conceptual model that explains the workers’ and learners’ motivation-engagement-learning process, discuss individuals’ motivation and engagement as essential prerequisites of learning in organizations, and highlight individual and situational resources that foster motivation and engagement. We conclude that situational resources such as an organization’s learning culture as well as the job design and the social situation at work might be even more important in motivating workers to engage in learning than individual learning needs and characteristics.


Motivation Engagement Workplace learning Job resources Individual resources 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland, School of EducationInstitute Research and Development, Center for Learning and SocializationSolothurnSwitzerland
  2. 2.Bern University of Teacher EducationInstitute of Upper Secondary EducationBernSwitzerland

Section editors and affiliations

  • Michael Gessler
    • 1
  • Larissa Holle
    • 2
  • Susanne Peters
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute of Technology and EducationUniversity of BremenBremenGermany
  2. 2.University of BremenBremenGermany
  3. 3.University of BremenBremenGermany

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