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CH5 - Festingersummary .odt

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University of Toronto St. George
Jason Plaks

The psychological effects of insufficient rewards. (Festinger, 1961) [First half] -a situation has been produced where the organism has two pieces of information or cognitions which do not fit together, to form a dissonant condition a) for example, working hard in preparation for an event b) the event is not likely to occur a) endured pain to attain an objective b) the objective is not very attractive -reasoning: dissonance occurs because psychologically, the obverse of one cognition follows from the other -to reduce dissonance: a) persuade himself the pain endured was not actually painful, or b) the objective is actually very attractive c) discontinue behaviour-> but Festinger only considers situations in which this option is not available -the acting individual analyses: a) action, as voluntary b) the environment, or the result or reward -suggests resistance to extinction is greater after partial reward than after complete reward -cognition: for research purposes, defined as being able to have behavioural differences observed when the environment changes -prediction: 1) nonreward-> dissonance leads to rats stopping behaviour 2) partial reward-> extra preference for behaviour or reward 3) extinction-> overcome preference before stopping behaviour -extends to any procedure which introduces dissonance should increase resistence to extinction because of dissonance reduction, for example, delay of reward - with experiments with rats: 1) first introduce rats to a choice of behaviours or rewards, to test out basically which behaviours or rewards are “better” or “worse” 2) then introduce rats to a nonchoice situation of the “worse” behaviours or rewards, and experiments show the rats would show greater resistence to extinction to the “worse” situations compared to the “better” situations -partial reward involves the same psychological processes as delay of reward -“The basis of [expectancy, or conditioning of cues, or any of a number of other varieties] is clearly not very useful in explaining the increased resistance to extinction after delay of reward” -holding effort during extinction constant, the more effort required during acquisition, the more resistance there is to extinction Festinger [Textbook version] Experiment: Participants were given a list of definitions for symbols and were told to familiarize themselves with the list so that they could be tested on it later. Easy Preparation Condition - Some would have the list to refer to during the test, and were only required to review the list befo
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