Hieu Hoang

Project title: Will Power: Is Personal Motivation Associated with Retention in the Army?

Degree: MPH | Program: Occupational and Environmental Medicine (OEM) | Project type: Thesis/Dissertation
Completed in: 2006


The Medical Board is an administrative process whereby Soldiers with a medical disability are evaluated to determine fitness for duty. This cohort study attempted to better understand the role of personal motivation and its association with retention in the Army. We postulated that personal motivation is positively correlated with retention. Logistic regression was used to evaluate predictors of retention in Soldiers with a disability undergoing the medical board process. Self-expressed motivation as measured by a single question was the strongest predictor of fitness determination. Motivation was highly influential in 6 cases where the PEB had recommended separation, however, all 6 cases indicated a desire to remain on active duty and were found fit at the end. In addition, older age, active duty status, MOS of combat support service, and medical diagnosis were found to be statistically significant predictors of retention. It is difficult to say if the studied question truly captures one’s motivation, and research is warranted to better assess motivation more accurately.

Taken from the beginning of thesis.