PS264 Chapter Notes - Chapter 12: Cognitive Flexibility, Monoamine Oxidase, Prefrontal Cortex

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Published on 18 Apr 2013
School
WLU
Department
Psychology
Course
PS264
Professor
Motivation and Emotion Chapter 12
Brian Kwok 1
Curiosity and Exploratory behaviour
o Exploratory behaviour occurs without very much encouragement from their parents
o Motivation for exploring has been basis for much discussion and debate
o Novelty, curiosity and exploratory behaviour
Organisms motivated to interact with new or novel objects and learn in the process
Interest in novel things diminishes with repeated exposure led to conclusion that what
motivates exploratory behaviour is novelty
Preference for complexity
Animals prefer choosing more complex stimulus if given the choice
Human exploratory behaviour is highly systematic
Dember and earl’s theory of exploratory behaviour
Theory based on assumption that organisms motivated to experience optimal
complexity
Pacer ranger
o Individual becomes accustomed or habituated to a certain level of
complexity (Adaptation level)
Motivated to explore stimuli slightly more complex
Individuals will select stimuli slightly more complex than those they have adapted to,
and will increase complexity
o Competence and exploratory behaviour
Effectance motivation effective interactions with environment intrinsically rewarding
o What is the motivation to explore?
Animals explore to ensure survival
To escape predator- find escape routes
To eat - To know food supplies
To reproduce- location of potential mates
Argued that motivation no longer tied directly to specific survival needs, but has roots in more
generalized drive
Need for self-determination, emerged as an evolutionary adaption
Motivation from an evolutionary prospective
Curiosity aroused by novelty, novelty is in the eye of the beholder
Motivation from a psychology perspective
Because of developing competence, things in environment are new or novel,
motivates individuals to interact with them
o New or novel things become familiar, other things become novel, motivates
person to interact with them
Exploratory behaviour is an inverted U shape
o Low or high complexity produces low effect
Motivated to maintain moderate arousal, inclined to seek out new stimuli that depart
from standard to experience moderate arousal again
o Concept of challenge and growth
Motivation theorists exploration as a person-environment interaction in which environment
provides challenge to the individual
During play, wide range of social skills more or less automatically emerge
o Anxiety and exploratory behaviour
Exploration decreases or stops altogether when the individual is anxious
Exploratory behaviour motivated by tendency to seek out novelty
Tendency might decrease when highly aroused
Securely attached infants explore more
Not only reduces anxiety, increases achievement/mastery behaviour
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Motivation and Emotion Chapter 12
Brian Kwok 2
Feelings of anxiety or arousal play important role in exploratory behaviour
o Biological component
Children with relatively stable temperaments more receptive to novel situations
Children less receptive take longer to adapt to new situations, must become secure before
they start exploring
Inhibited and uninhibited children
Considerable amount of extraversion due to genetics
About 43%
Extraversion linked to tendency to selected variety, novelty and complexity
Exploration must be viewed within hierarchical motive system
Minimal fear and anxiety- motive to explore fully aroused
High fear and anxiety- attention focused on survival
o Until survival needs are met, exploration does not happen
Exploratory behaviour has roots in BAS and BIS
BAS activation of this system creates positive effect, activated by reward systems
together with arousal
BIS- acts as comparator, comparing actual with expected stimulation
o As long as it matches, remains in checking mode
If situation is novel BIS activates alongside of BAS
o Timid or cautious until stimulus become familiar
o Learned/cognitive component
Age and preference for complexity
Experience plays central role in tendency to respond to variety, novelty and
complexity
Organisms become familiar with things by abstracting information
Process more as we attend more closely
As we grow older, ability to process more complex cognitive stimuli increases
Experience, competence and preference for complexity
If individuals repeatedly exposed to stimuli, lose interest because all information is
exhausted
Art students have experience processing complex visual stimuli, compared to nonart
students
o Intrinsic motivation
Used in place of exploratory behaviour
Defined as inherent tendency to seek out novelty and challenge, to extend and
exercise one’s capacities, to explore and learn
o Self-determination theory
Humans have three innate needs
Competence, relatedness and autonomy
Autonomy and competence form basis for understanding intrinsic motivation
o Before people can experience sense of competence, must experience
feelings of autonomy
Autonomy pertains to behaviour that has arisen in absence of external controls or influences
When autonomy encouraged, greater intrinsic motivation, curiosity, drive for
challenge
When control emphasized initiative decreases
Humans innately inclined to systematically respond to novelty and challenge to develop
competence
Self regulate, set goals, find paths to goals, activating mental capacities to complete
goal
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Document Summary

Curiosity and exploratory behaviour: exploratory behaviour occurs without very much encouragement from their parents, motivation for exploring has been basis for much discussion and debate, novelty, curiosity and exploratory behaviour. Organisms motivated to interact with new or novel objects and learn in the process. Interest in novel things diminishes with repeated exposure led to conclusion that what motivates exploratory behaviour is novelty. Animals prefer choosing more complex stimulus if given the choice. Dember and earl"s theory of exploratory behaviour. Theory based on assumption that organisms motivated to experience optimal complexity. Individual becomes accustomed or habituated to a certain level of complexity (adaptation level) Motivated to explore stimuli slightly more complex. Individuals will select stimuli slightly more complex than those they have adapted to, and will increase complexity: competence and exploratory behaviour. To eat - to know food supplies. Argued that motivation no longer tied directly to specific survival needs, but has roots in more generalized drive.

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