Students come from many different backgrounds and abilities but these are not the deciding factor in their success. Some may be wealthy while others may be poor. Great school districts and solid educational background may be helpful but it isn't the key deciding factor in a student's ability to achieve. The one factor that differentiates great students from all others is.......
Without motivation there isn't much that will be accomplished. Students will not be able to stay on track and put the effort in to achieve their goals. With motivation the rest of one's background matters much less in the long-term success.
A person who is motivated can overcome any deficiencies in income, poor schooling, or background. They have the will to keep focusing and improving on their educational outputs.
Signs of a student with low motivation is lack of acceptance of critical feedback, failure to implement new ideas, turning assignments in late, not spending the time needed to complete assignments, incorporating improvements.
Signs of a student with high motivation is high class participation, correcting of errors, turning work in on time, checking resources, continuous improvement, and developing a workable process for education.
What wasn't mentioned is the actual grade. It is the level of improvement that counts. Students may start out with many mistakes but with motivation they can soon increase their grades and outcomes. This requires diligence that is drawn from motivation. Educational outcomes are heavily focused on personality and individual effort.