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Midterm Notes Chapter 13 – Motivation and Emotion.docx

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Steve Joordens

Midterm Notes Chapter 13 Motivation and Emotion Motivation: general term for a group of phenomena that affect the nature of strength, and persistence of an individuals behaviour This chapter focuses on eating, sexual behaviour and aggression as these are important to survival of individual and species WHAT IS MOTIVATION Motivation is proactive and reactive Biological Needs Complex organisms possess physiological mechanisms that detect deficits or imbalances associated with these needs and related Regulatory behaviours: behaviour that tends to bring physiological conditions back to normal, thus restoring the condition of homeostasis Homeostasis: process by which important physiological characteristics are regulated so that they remain at their optimum level Regulatory system has 4 essential features: System variable: variable controlled by a regulatory mechanism for example temperature in a heating system Set point: optimum value of the system variable in a regulatory mechanism Detector: In a regulatory process, a mechanism that signals when the system variable deviates from its set point Correctional Mechanism: the mechanism that is capable of restoring the system variable to the set point Negative Feedback: process where the effect produced by an action serves to diminish or terminate that action. Regulatory systems are characterized by negative feedback loops Earliest systematic attempt to explain nature of motivation and reinforcement was: Drive reduction hypothesis: 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 reinforcing. Example: Hunger, Hunger serves as a drive: condition caused by physiological changes or homeostatic disequilibrium that energizes an organisms behaviour The act of eating reduces hunger and this drive reduction is reinforcing Not all dives are based on homeostasis; example o sex drive, we can survive without sex but the drive is certainly motivating, and is reinforcing Also, organisms in a featureless environment will be motivated to seek for something new This hypothesis falls in disfavor for two primary reasons: drive is almost impossible to measure & if we examine our own behaviour we find many events we experience are also exciting or drive increasing; roller coasters is fun not because it reduces drive Generally experiences we want to repeat, increase, not decrease our level of arousal/drive Physiology of Reinforcement Olds and Milner showed electrical stimulation of brain can be reinforcing to rats, found that it is reinforcing because it activates same system that is activated by natural reinforcers. Essential part of reinforcement system consists of neurons that release dopamine as transmitter substance Optimum-Level Theory In some cases, motivation can be avoidance of exciting stimuli Some psychologists proposed optimum-level hypothesis of reinforcement and punishment: hypothesis that all organisms will perform behaviour that restores the level of arousal to an optimum level Berlyne proposed two forms of exploration related to arousal Diversive exploration [ response to under stimulation] and Specific Exploration [response to over stimulation] Problem since we cannot measure someones drive we cannot determine what the optimum level is Perseverance Perseverance: the tendency to continue to perform a behaviour even when it is not being reinforced. Effects of Intermittent Reinforcement Studied in various ways: withholding of reinforcers, reinforcement of competing behaviour and so on Behaviour acquired with intermittent reinforcement more resistant to extinction Succeeding after several failures can cause the learner to resist the effects of subsequent failures Discovered in studies of extinction that environmental stimuli present during extinction become aversive Motivational effects of extinction are called frustration, and if another animal or human is present during the extinction they may be attacked -this s called extinction-induced aggression Example: quiet office worker who pounds on the vending machine when it doesnt give him his candy bar In society; large scale example would be scapegoating
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