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Investigating Motivation and Learning as Factors that Affect Attitudes

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The current experiment examined whether the type of interpersonal motivation (affiliative or epistemic) and the type of information participants received (social or individual) influenced their likelihood to social tune. While past work shows that affiliative and epistemic motivations will lead to social tuning, the type of information received has not been examined. To examine the influence of motivation and learning, 245 participants were primed via a sentence unscrambling task with affiliative motivation, epistemic motivation, or no motivation. Participants than viewed an ostensible Instagram post designed to encourage social, individual, or no learning. We then measured participants implicit and explicit attitudes to see if they aligned with the posts they viewed. Results show no statistically significant main effects or interaction of motivation or learning on implicit attitudes. However, an exploratory analysis showed a marginally significant main effect of affiliative motivation on implicit attitudes in the social learning condition. For explicit attitudes, there was no significant main effect of learning or the interaction between learning and motivation. However, explicit attitudes were significantly influenced by the type of motivation. Exploratory analyses showed that epistemic motivation led to more positive attitudes than affiliative and neutral motivation – especially in the social learning conditions. While these results do not fully agree with the hypotheses of the study, they act as indicators of where future researchers can focus their efforts.

  • This report represents the work of one or more WPI undergraduate students submitted to the faculty as evidence of completion of a degree requirement. WPI routinely publishes these reports on its website without editorial or peer review.
  • 82631
  • E-project-121322-111349
  • 2022
Date created
  • 2022-12-13
Resource type
  • E-project-121322-111349
Rights statement
Last modified
  • 2023-04-28


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