Behavioral Inhibition, Behavioral Activation, and Spontaneous Attribution.

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Title: Behavioral Inhibition, Behavioral Activation, and Spontaneous Attribution.
Author: Wrenn, Sara Cordelia
Advisors: James Luginbuhl, Committee Member
Rupert Nacoste, Committee Member
Jason Osborne, Committee Member
Katharine W. Klein, Committee Chair
Abstract: Multilevel linear modeling was used to evaluate the effects of situation- and individual-level variables on participants' appraisals of event outcomes. Situation vignettes were manipulated to have positive or negative and expected or unexpected outcomes; 180 undergraduate participants rated the valence and expectedness of these outcomes and completed Carver & White's (1994) BISବBAS scales. BIS⁄BAS scores accounted for significant variability in individuals' ratings of outcome valence and expectedness, beyond the significant main effects of the situational manipulations, and despite strong consensus on the direction of the manipulations. Results suggest that individuals vary in their appraisals of relatively unambiguous situations, and that individual differences in dispositional behavioral inhibition and activation systematically explain a meaningful component of this variation. These results suggest that further studies are warranted, to assess whether BIS and BAS are predictive of participants' propensities to engage in causal thinking in response to the same vignette manipulations, and whether BIS and BAS exert effects on causal thinking other than as a function of differences in appraisal.
Date: 2008-03-02
Degree: PhD
Discipline: Psychology

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