How To Motivate A Teenager To Study (Without a Fight)

Most times, parents and guardians see their teenagers lack of interest in studying as laziness. You may think the child is being rebellious and intentionally doesn’t want to study. 

But in most cases, it’s not so. 

It’s quite difficult to figure out how to motivate a teenager to study, especially if you’re not close to them. 

Before finding a befitting approach to the situation, you have to know why your teen is refusing to study. Then it’ll be easier to learn how to motivate your teenager to study. 

Why are teens not motivated to study?

teens not motivated to study

There are many things that can influence a teenagers ability to grasp things and make them unwilling to study. At first it may seem like just laziness (which is common), but there could be underlying factors too. 

A major reason why some teens aren’t motivated to study is the feeling of sadness or lack of motivation. Sometimes they may be unhappy and can’t find anything to motivate them to study. 

Now the primary cause of sadness or sudden lack of motivation in teens is stress. Stress may be due to a very huge workload which makes them feel burdened. 

Most teens aren’t great at time management either so that kind of worsens the situation. 

Sometimes, when the subject is too challenging, school work becomes torture to teens. They feel like no matter how hard they study, they’ll still fail because the subject is just too hard. 

Once that mindset sets in, they give up on making efforts to study for that particular subject. 

Other teens also find it hard to study if the environment isn’t conducive for learning. For example, teens with parents who always bicker at each other find it hard to study at home. 

We can’t put away this last one though. Emotional or mental health issues would make your teen unwilling about studying. They know they can’t assimilate what they read in that star if health so they wouldn’t even try. 

Now that you know the main reasons why teens may be unwilling to study, we can now learn how to encourage a teenager to study. 

How To Motivate A Teenager To Study

motivate a teenager to study

Motivating your teenager to study shouldn’t be a big deal if you’re close to them and if you’ve figured out why they’re reluctant to study. 

Now if you’re not very close to your teen, the above section would give you some ideas on why your teen is not studying. If you’ve figured out which one (or ones) are the issues, then you can pick the best solution from below. 

Help Them Out With Schoolwork

Most teens aren’t happy that they aren’t studying, but they still can’t get themselves to do it. Offering to help with the school work is a great way to encourage your teen to study, trust me. This literally works like magic.

They’ll feel like someone finally understands their struggles and is willing to help instead of criticizing them. If you were thinking of punishing your teen, well here’s the thing – it’ll work temporarily. 

After that, the teen will rebel even more and would get used to your punishments. Then you’re back to square one. Instead, offer to help them and talk to them while you’re at it. 

Have healthy conversations that’ll let them open up to you about what’s stressing them and the subjects they don’t understand. 

Encourage Dopamine-Replenishing Activities

study break

Let your teens do what they enjoy doing the most, even if it’s for a short period of time. If your teen is a gamer, let him play for a while. Encourage activities like swimming, basketball and physical exercises. 

Go jogging with your teen and do some workouts together. Being holed up in their room makes it more difficult for them to find motivation to study. 

You can even go see a movie with them. These things will reawaken them and bring back their liveliness. After that, they’ll want to give studying a shot again. 

Let Them Join A Study Group Or Study With Their Friends

You may think that if you let their friends come over, all they’ll do is play. Well, you might be wrong on that. They’ll play but they’ll also study together. 

Group studying (especially a group of friends) works well for teens. They share ideas and cheer each other up. When they’re together like that, the workload doesn’t seem too large. 

You can also let your teens join a study group. This is different from allowing them to study with their friends at home. A study group is more formal and it’s a great way to encourage your teen to study. 

Study groups are stimulating for teens because they’ll want to contribute as much as everyone else. The desire to not be the dull one in the group will make them study better. 

Get Closer To Them 

If you’ve had a rocky relationship with your teens, now is the time to fix it. Apologize to them if you’ve  offended them or made them sad. Let them know that you want them to study and that you’re willing to help in any way you can. 

A close relationship with your teens  will help you figure out what’s wrong with them even before they open up to you. This is very important because understanding your teens means you can assist them better and this will help you motivate your teenager to study, along with opening up a ton of other doors for communication.

Your teens can now open up to you about things that stresses them which they wouldn’t share with you normally. They can tell you about their relationship issues, cyber bullying and things like that.

It’s a great step that’s essential in helping your teens get back to their studying routine. 

Other ways to encourage your teens to study include: 

  • Teach your teens time management skills
  • Help your teens organize their schedules
  • Show interest in their school life
  • Don’t compare them to their mates
  • Take your teens attendance to school seriously 
  • Make time to talk about school with them
  • Do quizzes with them 
  • Teach them brain exercises 

Final Thoughts On How To Motivate A Teenager To Study

The good news is that you now know how to encourage a teenager to study. It all comes down to your relationship with them and how well you can identify the cause of their reluctance to study. 

After all, it’s our duty as parents and guardians to help them navigate through hardships like this. Hence learning how to motivate a teenager to study shows that we are willing to help which is a great motivation for our teens.

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Sara Dylan

Author Information

Sara Dylan is passionate about researching and writing interesting articles to help people. Sara is a prolific writer at, and enjoys a nice cup of tea as much as the next person.