In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, instructors across the world faced the uncertainty and challenge of retaining student engagement after transitioning from face-to-face to emergency remote instruction. Yet, few studies have evaluated student interest and motivation in the various learning formats during emergency remote learning conditions. The current study examines student situational interest and situational motivation with three emergency remote teaching formats. In Fall 2020, a previously face-to-face introductory animal science course was taught fully-remote. Each week, students participated in a 50-minute synchronous lecture (SLec), 50 minutes of asynchronous lecture (ALec), and a 70-minute synchronous lab (Lab). We assessed situational interest and situational motivation in SLec, Alec, and Lab during weeks 6 and 10. Using linear mixed effects modeling, students demonstrated greater situational interest, attention demand, instant enjoyment, novelty, and total interest in SLec and Lab compared with ALec. Intrinsic motivation was higher and external regulation was lower in Lab and SLec compared with ALec. Students reported greater amotivation and decreased identified regulation with the ALec compared with Lab. Our results, although limited to one course, suggest that synchronous remote formats are associated with greater student interest and intrinsic motivation compared with asynchronous formats.

Keywords: interest, motivation, online, asynchronous, synchronous