Psychology Chapter 11- Motivation

What is motivation?

A need or desire that energizes behavior and directs it toward a particular goal.

What are the theories of motivation we covered and how do they explain motivation?

A need or desire that energizes behavior and directs it toward a particular goal.

What are instincts?

automatic, involuntary, and unlearned behaviors that are released in response to certain stimuli and that are consistent within a species. (All members of the species will exhibit the same behavior in the same circumstances.)

What are the problems with Instinct Theory?

Instinct Theory cannot describe Human or Animal Behavior- it is more flexible than what Instinct Theory would allow for. It cannot account for the role of learning

What is homeostasis?

When there is a psychological imbalance, it creates a need. The need leads to an aroused state, which prompts behavior to satisfy the need. It corrects the imbalance. Tendency to maintain a constant, ideal internal state. The goal of Drive Reduction Theory.

What is arousal?

Arousal Theory: The general activation level of the body and brain. We are motivated to maintain a personal, optimal level of arousal. Motivation comes from optimal arousal level. We seek out excitement when we are bored, while we seek out calmer environments when we are over-stimulated.

What is Maslow's Hierarchy?

Described 6 degrees of higher needs. (From lowest on the Hierarchy to highest)
i. Biological needs
ii. Safety needs
iii. Belongingness and love
iv. Esteem needs
v. Self-actualization
vi. Transcendence
vii. Needs lower on the hierarchy tend to take precedence over higher needs.

What is meant by a set-point in terms of body weight?

Homeostatic body weight range. (Influenced by heredity)
Body resists deviations from our set-point range by altering our hunger levels, our activity levels, and our basal metabolic rates.

What mechanisms does the body use to keep one's weight around the set-point?

Brain (especially hypothalamus- monitors signals coming from other organs regarding how full, our level of nutrients and hormone levels that are circulating in our blood stream.)
Organs - stomach, intestines, liver
Blood - nutrient levels, hormones

What is basal metabolic rate?

the amount of energy the body burns at rest

Can one's set-point change?

If you begin to lose weight, you decrease basal metabolic rate to avoid falling away from the set point.
If you begin to gain weight, increasing basal metabolic rate,
Thermostat. Our bodies can only resist deviations only to a certain point.

If people have their caloric intake cut in half, do they lose a corresponding amount of weight?

Caloric Restriction and Overfeeding Experiments (3500- 500 calorie/days. Lost 6% of body weight.

What are some psychosocial problems faced by overweight or obese people in our culture?

We often eat when we're not hungry. Even when we're hungry, we don't need food. We eat more if there is a variety of food, in a group of people, bigger utensils or bigger bowls/plate, good food, when we're stressed or bored.

How and why are those who are overweight or obese face discrimination in our culture?

Lower self-esteem, depression, exclusion, bullying, discrimination (major influence of appearance in our culture)
Seen as less sincere, less friendly, meaner, more obnoxious, less worthy of hiring- People rated obese people in wider images with negative characteristics, as the same people in normal images.

Are there particular personality traits associated with obesity?

Personality not related to obesity

Are all people who eat healthily and exercise thin?

Not everyone who eats healthy and exercises regularly, and not everyone who eats a high fat diet and doesn't exercise will be fat.

What are some of the causes of obesity?

Metabolic differences- A formerly obese person will need less calories. Lower metabolisms.
People who are adopted tend to be more like their biological parents rather than their adopted parents. (Adopted siblings have no correlation in their body weights.)
Genes influence fullness signals to the brain, metabolism, how readily our body converts extra calories into fat, activity level, brain reward system, fat cells. You can gain more fat cells, but cannot be lost.
Social Influences: healthy foods have become more expensive, serving sizes have increased, accessibility to fast food, chemical modifications, more sedentary lifestyle, leisure activities, labor saving devices available.

What are the features of anorexia nervosa?

One of the deadliest psychological disorders
Significantly underweight
Fear of weight gain
Distorted body image- they think they are fat
Perfectionism, high achieving, low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, more emotionally sustained

What are the features of bulimia nervosa?

Binge and purge pattern of eating behavior- Eating large quantities of food and then self-induced vomiting, abusive laxatives, exercising, or starve themselves.
Overly restrictive diet, then lose control and eat.

How do anorexia and bulimia differ? How are they similar? Are they found in every culture? What characterizes the cultures in which they are found? Are thin women considered attractive in all cultures?

Similarities with anorexia - females, preoccupation with food, fear of gaining weight, depression, anxiety, moms preoccupied with weight
Differences - Bulimia begins later than anorexia. Bulimia begins in the late-teens or early twenties. Body weight, people with Bulimia are slightly normal body weight or overweight while anorexics are significantly underweight.
Personality Characteristics- genes influence the personality characteristics to develop one of these disorders.
Manifestation of depression/anxiety- ways to cope with depression and anxiety. Influenced by genes.
Cultural obsession with thinness and appearance
Thin ideal not universal for all cultures- narrow definition of beauty. Some cultures have obese women as ideal.
Rates of anorexia and bulimia increase as a culture becomes more westernized with a thin ideal. Personal and Environmental Pressures

What is the sexual response cycle and what researchers described it?

Masters and Johnson- types of studies to examine sexual behaviors.

How is the sexual response cycle similar and different for females and males?

Excitement- genitals engorge with blood, vagina expands and lubricates, breasts and nipples may enlarge
Plateau- excitement peaks, breathing, pulse, blood pressure increases, penis fully engorged, may secrete some semen, clitoris retracts
Orgasm- muscle contractions all over body, further increase in breathing, pulse, blood pressure (endorphins released)
Resolution- body gradually returns to normal unaroused state, takes longer without orgasm
Refractory period- A period of time during the male is unable to repeat the sexual response cycle. (could be minutes/hours/days.)
Males are less variable in the way they go through sexual response cycle
Male and Female orgasm are very similar- female takes longer
134 female, 16 male

How does viewing images or videos of sexually attractive individuals affect one's feelings for their own partner?

Men become aroused when they see, hear, or read erotic material. Men's feelings of sexual arousal closely mirrors their genital response than women's.
Women exhibit nearly as much arousal to the same stimuli
Viewing images of sexually attractive women and men lead people to devalue their own partners and relationships. Men find their girlfriend or wife when looking at depictions of other sexually attractive women.

How strong of a role do hormones generally play in human sexual behavior?

1. Human sexual behavior less tied to hormones
2. Normal short-term fluctuations in hormone levels have little influence in sexual desire or interest.
3. Sexual motivation changes through menstrual cycle, debated.
4. Affected by psychological factors- testosterone levels rise
5. Human females are affected by testosterone
a. Psychology affects biology- Hypothalamus.
b. Higher brain regions regulate how responsive the hypothalamus is to sexual hormones in humans. (Cognitive factors have an enormous influence on sexual behavior.)

How are hormone levels and the brain's response to hormones impacted by psychological factors?

Attitudes and Interpretation towards sexual behaviors and stimulation

What does the study of different cultures indicate about human sexuality? How do cultures vary in terms of acceptable sexual behaviors (Inis Beag, Mangaia, Sambia, Samoa) and sources of arousal?

Inis Beag-1960's and 1970's. Island off the coast of Ireland, inhabited by people who hated nudity. No breast feeding, a necessary evil. A very low rate of female orgasm.
Mangaia- An island in the south pacific. Sex was considered a major recreactional activity. Kids encouraged, often given expert instruction in sex. Assigned to have sex for longer periods of time in order to find a congenial partner. Females would experience multiple orgasms.
Parts of the Body that are Arousing- in some cultures female breasts aren't considered special. In some cultures, small breasts are more attractive than large breasts. Armpits are somewhat encouraged. Men with smaller pensises are valued over large penises.

How effective are abstinence-based sex-ed programs? Virginity pledges?

A greater emphasis on teen abstinence within sex-education programs finds four urban, school-based abstinence programs and 49 percent of students not participating in sex. Hard to see committing to abstinence in pre-marital sex.

What is sexual orientation?

Natures of a person's enduring emotional, romantic, or sexual attraction.

What are some misconceptions regarding homosexuality (see outline)?

Homosexuality is not a mental disorder
People with a homosexual orientation are less likely to sexually abuse kids than are people with a heterosexual orientation
Gay/lesbian couples are similar to heterosexual couples in relationship love and satisfaction
Most gay men are not effeminate, most lesbians are not masculine

Is there a genetic influence on sexual orientation?

1. Genetics- Non-heterosexuality tends to run in families.
a. Identical twins are more likely to share an orientation than fraternal twins are. If one identical twin is gay, than there is a 50% chance that the twin will also be gay regardless of environment. Genes just have a small influence of the probability of their sexual orientation

Do hormone levels differ between those with a homosexual orientation and those with a heterosexual orientation?

Adult hormone levels- no difference in circulating hormone levels between heterosexual and homosexual individuals. There is no way to decipher.
Effects of prenatal hormonal abnormalities unclear in humans- Females who were exposed to higher levels of male hormones as fetuses are more likely to be lesbian/bisexual. Some studies find no difference.

Can we conclude that structural variations in the brain cause sexual orientation? Why or why not?

Do the differences in Brain structure cause a particular orientation? Question of cause and effect. Not necessarily because our brains are affected by experience. Plasticity allows the brain to change as experience, so effects will be felt and not necessarily a cause.

What is the older brother or fraternal birth order effect?

a. The Older Brother Effect- the more older brothers a man has, the more likely he is to be gay. This seems only to apply to right-handed men, and makes no difference if the man was raised with his brothers or not. Sisters make no difference, and adopted brothers make no difference. The only thing that matters are how many boys were in the womb. The probability reaches 10% when one has 6 older brothers. Only affects men, not women.

Have environmental influences been discovered that play a role in sexual orientation?

Little to no influence of shared environment or caregiver orientation that impact sexual orientation. Adopted kids, unrelated, raised in the same home. If one of those kids becomes gay/lesbian, there is no increase in chance that other kids growing up in the home will be gay/lesbian.
There is no increase probability of adopted kids who are raised by gay/lesbian couples for their own sexual orientation.
Attempts to alter orientation generally ineffective. Orientation cannot be willfully chosen or changed.

Does caregiver orientation have much influence on a child's later sexual orientation?

Little to no influence of shared environment or caregiver orientation that impact sexual orientation.

What do studies indicate regarding the effects of social rejection?

Increases aggression and depression- when we are rejected by others
Performance impacted- Poorly in cognitive tasks
Pain Tolerance Increases

What is intrinsic motivation?


What is extrinsic motivation?

reward, approval, avoid punishment

What can happen when someone is given extrinsic motivators for activities that are already instrically motivated (this is known as the overjustification effect)? (see text p. 289)

Behaving in Certain Ways to gain external rewards or avoid punishment
People pay more attention to the extrinsic reward than the intrinsic enjoyment
External motivators result in decline of intrinsic motivation More likely to shift with concrete rewards, creative tasks, anticipated rather than unanticipated rewards

What is industrial/organizational psychology?

The application of psychological concepts and methods to optimizing human behavior in workplace

How to increase worker satisfaction and productivity?

Some factors that are related to job satisfaction and productivity... employees tend to be happier and more productive when they know exactly what is expected of them, when they receive feedback about their performance, when they receive praise for good work, and when they have some control and input regarding their work environment and schedules.

What do human factors psychologists do? (see text p. 442, 454)

Human Factors Psychology explores how machines and environments can be optimally designed to fit human abilities. They study people's natural perceptions and inclinations to create user-friendly machines and work settings.

What is the curse of knowledge? (p. 455)

When you know a thing, it's hard to mentally simulate what it's like not to know.