Factors Influencing Academic Motivation of Ethnic Minority Students: A Review

Ulviye Isik*, Omaima El Tahir, Martijn Meeter, Martijn W. Heymans, Elise P. Jansma, Gerda Croiset, Rashmi A. Kusurkar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The aim of this study to create a comprehensive overview of factors that may influence motivation of ethnic minority students from their own perspective. A systematic review was conducted in PubMed, ERIC, and PsycINFO to find studies in which the motivation of ethnic minority students was studied. The articles reviewed were qualitatively synthesized by means of meta-ethnography, and were subjected to a quantitative meta-analysis where appropriate. Forty-five articles were included. Several factors were found to have either a positive or a negative influence on academic motivation, which can be classified into individual, family-related, school-related, and social factors. These factors should be taken into account when developing interventions aimed at enhancing motivation, which is expected to improve. However, evidence for the influence of most identified factors is weak, given that almost every factor was investigated in a single study only. Based on the outcomes of the current overview an integrative model, that provides a structure of the identified factors in relation to motivation which can be used for interventions, cannot be generated; thus, further research is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-23
Number of pages23
JournalSage Open
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2018

Bibliographical note

Article first published online: June 27, 2018


  • academic performance
  • ethnic minority students
  • literature review
  • motivation


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