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Frustration and Automatic Processing

By: David Phelps, Kristine Schuster, and Isaac Weinkauf Hanover College. Frustration and Automatic Processing. Previous Literature. Barker (1938) studied the effect of frustration upon Cognitive Ability

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Frustration and Automatic Processing

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  1. By: David Phelps, Kristine Schuster, and Isaac Weinkauf Hanover College Frustration and Automatic Processing

  2. Previous Literature • Barker (1938) studied the effect of frustration upon Cognitive Ability • Dollard et al. (1939) define frustration: “an interference with the occurrence of an instigated goal-response at its proper time in the behavior sequence” • Bessiere (2002) and Ceaparu (2003) investigated frustration produced by computers • Knott (1971) studied how frustration constricts selective attention

  3. Research Question • How does frustration affect performance of Automatic Processing and Attentional Override of Automatic Processing as measured by the Stroop Effect Task?

  4. Hypothesis • Frustration will constrict attentional processes such that frustrated participants will be worse at overriding the automatic process of reading as measured by the Stroop Effect than non-frustrated participants

  5. Hypothesis

  6. Procedure • Informed Consent • Instruction Sheet • Working Memory Task • Randomly assigned to: • Control • Frustrated Manipulation (delay) • Stroop Effect Task • XXXX condition Reaction Time • Incongruent condition Reaction Time • Completed in random order • Debriefing Form

  7. Methods • Frustration Manipulation • Shown series of words in modified Working Memory Experiment • 5 - Number of words to recognize • x3 – Seconds Delay Between Responses • 15 – Seconds Needed to Complete Recognition • 12 – Seconds Available for Recognition • What this computes to is a relatively easy task made impossible to correctly select all words before time runs out

  8. Participants • Self report • N=24 • 8 female • Ages 19-22 • Undergraduate students • Voluntary participation • Some completed for extra credit

  9. Results • 2X2 mixed ANOVA • Between subjects: frustration • Within subjects: Stroop (XXXX, Incongruent) • Interaction • p=.088, alpha=.1 • Simple Main Effects • XXXX: p = .772 • Incongruent: p = .195

  10. Stroop Effect Reaction Times

  11. Discussion • Results do not support the hypothesis

  12. Discussion • Frustrated participants performed faster at the Incongruent Stroop Task than Non-frustrated participants • Perhaps under frustration attention does not constrict, but focuses. Alternatively, under frustration automatic processes are inhibited.

  13. Limitations • Manipulation of frustration may have been ineffective if participants were • Not invested in succeeding at task • Disengaged from task • Frustrated prior to task • Unaware of the goal of the task (recognition of words within a time limit) • Resilient to frustration

  14. Future Directions • Stronger frustration manipulation • Effects of frustration on other cognitive abilities • Explore mechanisms behind frustration’s effects on performance

  15. Questions?

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