Ch.13 Notes.doc

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18 Mar 2012

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Ch.13 Motivation and Emotion
Biological needs
-motivation: a general term for a group of phenomena that affect the nature,
strength or persistence of an individual’s behaviour
oincludes stimuli that have become associated with pleasant or unpleasant
events which motivate approach or avoidance behaviour
-regulatory behaviour: a behaviour that tend to bring physiological conditions
back to normal, thus restoring the condition of homeostasis (i.e. eating, drinking,
shivering, hunting)
-homeostasis: process by which important physiological characteristics (such as
body temperature and blood pressure) are regulated so that they remain at their
optimum level – detection and correction – deficits or imbalances motivate us
because they cause us to perform appropriate regulatory behaviours
-Regulatory system:
osystem variable: the variable controlled by a regulatory mechanism; for
example, temperature in a heating system.
oSet point: optimum value of system variable in a regulatory mechanism.
The set point for human body temperature, recorded orally, is
approximately 37 degrees Celsius
oDetector: in a regulatory process, a mechanism that signals when the
system variable deviates from it set point
oCorrectional mechanism: in a regulatory process, the mechanism that is
capable of restoring the system variable to set point
-Negative feedback: a process whereby the effect produced by an action serves to
diminish or terminate that action. Regulatory systems are characterized by negative
feedback loops. (i.e. heat production in room “feeds back” to thermostat and causes
it to turn heater off)
-Drive reduction hypothesis: the hypothesis that a drive (resulting from
physiological need or deprivation) produces an unpleasant state that causes an
organism to engage in motivated behaviours. Reduction of drive is assumed to be
-Drive: a condition, often caused by physiological changes or homeostatic
disequilibrium, that energizes an organism’s behaviour – i.e. hunger
Optimum-Level Theory
-Optimum-level hypothesis: the hypothesis that organisms will perform behaviour
that restores the level of arousal to an optimum level
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owhen an individual’s arousal level is too high, less stimulation is
reinforcing; when it is too low, more stimulation is desired
odiversive exploration: response to understimulation (boredom)
ospecific exploration: response to overstimulation (usually b/c of specific
need such as food, that leads to needed item, decreasing organism’s drive
-Perseverance: the tendency to continue to perform a behaviour even when it is not
being reinforced
Effects of Intermittent Reinforcement
- intermittent reinforcement leads to perseverance, even when the behaviour is no
longer reinforced – behaviour persists for a long time
Effects of Unnecessary Reinforcement
- paid for good grades – you would only be working for extrinsic rewards ($$)
instead of intrinsic rewards (satisfaction and gain from learning)
- giving intrinsic rewards may undermine intrinsic motivation
-Overjustification hypothesis: the superfluous application of extrinsic rewards to
intrinsically motivated behaviour will undermine intrinsic motivation
oAfter a shift from intrinsic to extrinsic motivation occurs, extrinsic rewards
disappear and person will show loss of interest and perseverance in
rewarded activity
oDirect verbal praise can enhance intrinsic motivation (sincerely only)
Learned Helplessness
- organisms can learn that they are powerless to affect own destinies
-Learned helplessness: a response to exposure to an inescapable aversive stimulus,
characterized by reduced ability to learn a solvable avoidance task; thought to play
a role in the development of some psychological disturbances
- When humans have experiences that lead to learned helplessness, they become
depressed and their motivational level decreases – lowers expectation that trying to
perform a task will bring success
What Starts a Meal?
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Physiological Factors
- “spit and rumble theory” – hunger caused by walls of stomach rubbing against each
other; thirst caused by decreased flow of saliva
- Depletion of body’s store of nutrients is more likely cause of hunger
- Primary fuels for cells of our body are glucose (simple sugar) and fatty acids
(chemicals produced when fat broken down)
- Short-term reservoir – store carbohydrates; located in cells of muscles and liver and
filled with carbohydrate (animal starch called glycogen)
-Glycogen: an insoluble carbohydrate that can be synthesized from glucose or
converted to it; used to store nutrients
- Long-term reservoir – store fats; consists of adipose tissue (fat tissue) which is
found beneath skin in various locations in abdomen
- Adipose tissue consists of cells capable of absorbing nutrients from blood,
converting them to triglycerides (fats) and storing them
- Once level of glycogen in short-term reservoir gets low, fat cells start breaking
down fats and releasing fatty acids and carbohydrate called glycerol
- Brain primarily lives on glucose and rest of body lives on fatty acids; glycerol is
converted into glucose, so brain continues to be nourished even after short-term
reservoir is depleted
-Glucostatic hypothesis: hypothesis that hunger is caused by a low level or
availability of glucose, a condition that is monitored by specialized sensory
neurons; level of glucose in blood becomes low after glycogen in body’s short-term
reservoir has been used up
Cultural and Social Factors
- what we eat and how we ea are determined by cultural factors
- our hunger comes and goes according to a learned schedule
What Stops a Meal?
- satiety – cessation of hunger caused by eating (full stomach)
- stomach contains detectors that inform brain about chemical nature of its contents
as well as quantity – if healthy, then you feel full faster than if food was less
healthy (contribute only to short-term eating – termination of single meal)
- The OB mouse – strain of mice w/low metabolism, overeats and monstrously fat
Genetic mutation, fat cells of OB mice are unable to secrete leptin
- in humans, level of leptin in blood is correlated w/obesity
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