Abstract: This study describes the relationship between motivation factors and academic performance among distance education students enrolled in a postgraduate nursing course. Students (n=96) participated in a survey that assesses student's motivational orientations from a cognitive perspective using a selfadministered questionnaire based on Pintrich-s Motivation Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MLSQ). Results showed students- motivational factors are highest on task value (6.44, 0.71); followed by intrinsic goal orientation (6.20, 0.76), control beliefs (6.02, 0.89); extrinsic goal orientation (5.85, 1.13); self-efficacy for learning and performance (5.62, 0.84), and finally, test anxiety (4.21, 1.37). Weak positive correlations were found between academic performance and intrinsic goal orientation (r=0.13), extrinsic goal orientation (r=0.04), task value (r=0.09), control beliefs (r=0.02), and self-efficacy (r=0.05), while there was weak negative correlation with test anxiety (r=-0.04). Conclusions from the study indicate the need to focus on improving tasks and targeting intrinsic goal orientations of students to courses since these were positively correlated with academic performance and downplay the use of tests since these were negatively correlated with academic performance.