TOPIC 11: Motivation and Emotion Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in TOPIC 11: Motivation and Emotion Deck (60)
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an inferred process that causes an organism to move toward a goal


evolution/Instinct Theory:

- behaviours are governed by fixed action
patterns, which are not learned

- cannot account for learned behaviours


Drive-Reduction Theory (Walter Cannon, 1932):

- Deprivation of biologically necessary stimulus creates a physiological need, so people are “pushed” toward a goal to restore balance

- Based on homeostasis

- regulatory drives

- non-regulatory drives



body’s tendency to maintain a stable physiological state


regulatory drive

innate, unlearned drives that help to preserve homeostasis

e.g., hunger, thirst, salt, O2,


non regulatory drives

unrelated to homeostasis


Incentive Theory (Clark Hull, 1943; 1951):

- external stimulus “pulls” people toward a goal or reinforcement

e.g., the appetizer effect:

(influenced by many other factors including socialization and (perceived) time of day)


appetizer effect

sight or smell of food increases appetite


Arousal Theory (Marvin Zuckerman, 1994; 2007):

- developed scale measuring motivation for:

- most people seek a balance between familiarity and novelty

- but some people (sensation seekers) want to increase their arousal

- may be a link between certain brain chemicals/gonadal hormones and thrill-seeking motivation

sensation seeking may help overcome low autonomic reactivity ==>  increasing brain activity to normal levels


the scale for motivation for :

• thrill- and adventure-seeking (activities involving speed and danger)

• experience seeking (new, unconventional experiences and people)

• disinhibition (lack of social and sexual restraint)

• boredom susceptibility (aversion to repetition and routine)


Cannon & Washburn (1912):

- Swallowed balloon to record stomach contractions

- Hunger pangs occurred during peak of contractions

Problem: people who have had their stomachs removed still feel hunger


Brain regions (Stellar, 1954):

Lateral hypothalamus = hunger switch?
- LH lesions ==> animals starve (+ other behaviours decreased)
- lesions severed brainstem ==> basal ganglia tract (motivation)
Ventromedial hypothalamus = full switch?
- VMH lesions ==> gorging (+ other behavioural effects)
• lesions speeded digestion
• food stored as fat
• tissues still required fuel ==>  more eating


Prader-Willi Syndrome (Prader, Labhart, & Willi, 1956):

- chromosome 15 disorder; incidence: 9 per 100,000

- characteristics include cognitive impairment, behavioral problems, hyperphagia

- linked to abnormal hypothalamus

- complex interactions


complex interactions:

motivational brain regions work with incentives & action planning


Set-Point Theory (Nisbett, 1972):

body has homeostatic level for weight, which is based on:

• metabolism:
- Basal metabolic rate: energy expended at rest (genetically influenced)
- thermogenesis: heat production
e.g., voluntary activity/exercise
e.g., brown adipose tissue (BAT): burns calories to generate body heat

• fat cells

• hormones
- insulin:
- leptin
- peptide YY3-36


- peptide YY3-36

 may signal fullness: cut food intake by 33% (Batterham et al., 2002)



(protein secreted by fat cells which binds to VMH): decreases appetite and increases metabolism



facilitates uptake of glucose into cells


fat cells

(may increase in size and number)


evidence for set-point theory

- yo-yo effect: 
- Sims (1974):


yo-yo effect

once diet is over, people tend to return to their set-point
(unless metabolism, fat cells, or hormones changed)


 Sims (1974):

1. Baseline phase: each man ate his normal diet

2. Adapting phase: men were given more calories (overfeeding)

3. Test phase: went back to normal diet


1. Baseline phase: each man ate his normal diet

- Participants were volunteers from Vermont State prison
- Had no family history of obesity
- Number of calories consumed was recorded for 6 weeks
- No weight gain


2. Adapting phase: men were given more calories (overfeeding)

- men gained weight (up to 20% increase)
- took 4-6 months; some had to eat 10,000 calories/day


3. Test phase: went back to normal diet

- men lost weight until it returned back to baseline level
- took less than 10 weeks


Sexual Motivation
Affected by biological factors: hormones

- Adrenal gland ==> DHEA(begins before puberty); implicated in onset of sexual feelings; supplements may not have any effect

- Men: low testosterone levels produce decreased drive.

- Women: in general, desire slightly higher at ovulation.
Also affected by sexual characteristics, cultural standards


The double standard:

- promiscuity seen as positive for men, but negative for women

- (as a result?) women are more conservative about sex than men

- predicted by evolutionary theory due to differences in parental investment


Clark &; Hatfield (1989):

- had students in social psych class find out whether men or women would be more receptive to an offer of sex from a stranger
- asked questions like “Would you go out tonight?” “Will you come over to my apartment?”
- results for “Would you go to bed with me?”
• men: __% accepted
• women: __% accepted


Hendrick &; Hendrick (1987; 2006):

- Developed Sexual Attitudes Scale

- Measures:
• Permissiveness (casual sexuality)
• Birth Control (nonjudgmental/responsible sexuality)
• Communion (spiritual/idealistic sexuality)
• Instrumentality (pleasure/biological sexuality)


Growth Mindset

- After repeated failed attempts to open a locked cage, animals stop trying--even when it is possible to escape (learned helplessness)