Dave, thanks for bringing this up. I used to obsess about this problem when I was a graduate student, and summed up my concern as follows:

If a student does not want to learn, they will not –

Even in spite of good teaching.

If a student wants to learn, they will –

Even in spite of poor teaching.

I say I obsessed about it, and it really did consume a lot of my cycles. ‘Why bother learning how to use all these “effective instructional strategies” when people aren’t even going to engage with them?’ I worried. I used a final project assignment as an excuse to pull together my thinking on the problem, and developed a mini-curriculum for teachers and instructional designers that I called “Getting Students Interested.”

http://opencontent.org/docs/gsi_full.pdf

(This thing is so old it’s using the Open Publication License! Possibly 98 but probably 99. Either way, it hasn’t seen the light of day in over 15 years.)

I haven’t looked at it in a while, but if there’s something useful here in terms of nudging your thinking forward – even just by giving you something that you can strongly disagree with – then the share was worth it. If it turns out there actually is something interesting in here, let’s talk about it.