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Why study Motivation?. The WHY of behavior. Central to Psychology. See a behavior Looting in New Orleans Why did they do that? Hungry? Taking advantage of situation? Investigate the causes for action. Investigating a crime. Example: young lady found murdered Means Opportunity

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Why study motivation l.jpg

Why study Motivation?

The WHY of behavior.


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Central to Psychology

  • See a behavior

  • Looting in New Orleans

  • Why did they do that?

  • Hungry?

  • Taking advantage of situation?

  • Investigate the causes for action.


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Investigating a crime.

Example: young lady found murdered

  • Means

  • Opportunity

  • Motive


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Means

  • How was the murder committed?

  • Killed with a golf club

  • Blow strong enough to be lethal


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Opportunity

  • Suspect in the same location.

  • No alibi.

  • Eye witness who saw the suspect at location.

  • Red and white Ferrari


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Motive

  • Why?

  • Not just an accident

  • Money

  • Jealousy

  • Revenge

  • Secret


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Why is motive so important?

  • What do you think?


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Another example:

  • Why might a person experiment with psychoactive drugs?


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Possible reasons for drug use

  • Interest

  • Risk taking

  • Peer influence

  • Change of Mood

  • Enjoyment


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Intervention

  • How should we help them stop?

  • Just tell them to not to do it.

  • Problem with just say no?

  • Doesn’t deal with underlying reason

  • Offer alternatives

  • Reward for doing alternatives.


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Possible alternatives for drug use

  • Interest

  • Risk taking

  • Peer influence

  • Change of Mood

  • Enjoyment


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For those who become addicted

  • Drugs rule their lives.

  • Lose motivation for other activities.

  • Choices narrow.

  • Loss of family, job, home.

  • Yet some reach a turning point.

  • Decide to quit.


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Filling the void

  • Loss of addiction leaves huge void.

  • Must fill the void in order to feel whole.

  • Fellowship of others: AA, CA, GA

  • Spirituality

  • “AA not about staying sober. It’s about finding a new way to live.”

  • Addiction and Grace


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Define Motivation

  • Study of those processes that give behavior its energy and direction.

  • Energy: strength to start and complete task

  • Direction: purpose, aimed at achieving goal


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Elements

  • Motivation based on

  • Internal needs

  • Thoughts and emotions

    And

  • External events


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Organizing Motivation

Motivation

External events


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Fire fighter rescues girl

  • Internal motives

  • Needs

  • Thoughts

  • Emotions

  • External events


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Internal Needs

  • Biological needs:

    Essential to sustain life (food, water)

  • Psychological needs

    Achievement, mastery

  • Social needs

    Belonging to groups


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Cognitive Needs

  • Mental events (thoughts)

  • Beliefs and expectations

  • Ways of evaluating failures and successes

  • Example: Do well on first test.

    Good study habits or luck?


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Emotions

  • Provide the fuel for action

  • Emote: brings about actions

  • Best plans of little use unless you carry them out.

  • Emotional intelligence: knowing yourself and other people


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External events

  • Provide the reason for motivation

  • Incentives for action

  • Incentive are useful

    help direct behavior

  • Allow us to direct the behavior of others


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Training our puppy

  • New puppy grabs my pencil and chews it to bits.

  • I offer dog treat.

  • He drops pencil.

  • Puppy gets idea.

  • Grabs anything in reach and brings it to me.

  • Puppy blackmail.


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Measuring motivation

  • Often wonder if people are really motivated to complete a task.

  • Working hard or hardly working?

  • Set goals for people.

  • How do we know they’re working to reach those goals along the way?

  • Seek outward measure that we can agree upon.


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Three measurement categories

  • Behavior expressions: overtly observable

  • Physiological measures: polygraph

  • Self report: ask ‘em


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Seven behavior expressions of motivation

Example: send kids out to clear snow

  • Effort: exertion

    big scoops?

  • Latency: delay before starting

    now or “in a little while”?

  • Choice: chose one thing over another

    shoveling or snow men?


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Behavior expressions (cont)

  • Persistence: stay with task

    finish job?

  • Probability of response: take advantage of every opportunity

    shovel before you even ask (WOW)

  • Facial expressions (pleasure or anger)

  • Bodily gestures (fist or high fives)


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Another example: exercising

  • Effort

  • Latency

  • Persistence

  • Choice

  • Probability of response

  • Facial expressions

  • Bodily gestures


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Physiological measures

  • Measure emotion

  • Polygraph

  • Stress response

  • Heart rate, sweat, respiration

  • Indicate an emotional response

  • Blood pressure

  • Pupil size


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Response of Pupil

  • Pupil dilates if interested in something or someone

  • Pupil constricts if you are not.

  • Lighting conditions must be constant.


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Self report

  • Use surveys to assess motivational and emotion states.

  • Many instruments available.

  • Many have not been standardized.

  • Not diagnostic tests

  • Self assessments