The cognitive dissonance theory

You should see it in your inbox very soon. Wage incentives[ edit ] Humans are motivated by additional factors besides wage incentives. The believer must have social support from other believers.

Cognitive Dissonance

The effect of severity of initiation on liking for a group. There is perhaps no surer way of infecting ourselves with virulent hatred toward a person than by doing him a grave injustice.

Extrinsic motivation thus contrasts with intrinsic motivation, which is doing an activity simply for the enjoyment of the activity itself, instead of for its instrumental value. Created by Clark Hull and further developed by Kenneth Spencethe theory became well known in the s and s.

Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 37, — Ent and Mary A Gerend informed the study participants about a discomforting test for a specific fictitious virus called the "human respiratory virus". Because these participants did not make a decision, they did not have any dissonance to reduce.

Upon leaving the room, the experimenter told one-half of the group of children that there would be severe punishment if they played with the steam-shovel toy; and told the second half of the group that there would be a mild punishment for playing with the forbidden toy.

As time passes the strength of the drive increases if it is not satisfied in this case by eating.

Cognitive Dissonance: The Theory, Real-Life Examples, and How It Affects Your Day-to-Day Life

Personal motivation often comes from activities a person believes to be central to the everyday occurrences in their community. This type of motivation has neurobiological roots in the basal gangliaand mesolimbic, dopaminergic pathways.

While not a theory of motivation, per se, the theory of cognitive dissonance proposes that people have a motivational drive to reduce dissonance. There are also individual differences in whether or not people act as this theory predicts. They had not enjoyed the experiment, but now they were asked to lie and say they had enjoyed it.

The results indicated that the active reduction of psychological dissonance increased neural activity in the right- inferior frontal gyrusin the medial fronto-parietal region, and in the ventral striatumand that neural activity decreased in the anterior insula.

Moreover, upon overcoming the disconfirmed belief by changing to global environmentalism, the cult increased in numbers, by successful proselytism. Annual Review of Psychology, 6, — They do this by changing their attitudes, beliefs, or actions, rather than facing the inconsistencies, because dissonance is a mental strain.

Many people seem able to cope with considerable dissonance and not experience the tensions the theory predicts. We will look at the main findings to have emerged from each area. Justify our behavior by changing the conflicting cognition.

Cognitive Dissonance: A Crash Course

In other words, people simply tend to befriend their neighbors. When an earthquake disaster occurs to a community, irrational rumors, based upon fear, quickly reach the adjoining communities unaffected by the disaster because those people, not in physical danger, psychologically justify their anxieties about the earthquake.


People can be moved in many small jumps or one large one. The belief must have produced actions that are arguably difficult to undo. Psychometrika, 11 297— The second type of needs deals with reputation, status, recognition, and respect from colleagues.

Human Relations, 2 2— A study of rumor transition: High-choice condition participants showed a higher level of the left frontal cortex than the low-choice participants.

Conversely, if the behavior is followed by something undesirable a punisherthe behavior is less likely to occur in the presence of the stimulus.

Cognitive Dissonance (Leon Festinger)

Instead, two other conditions need to be in place: Aim To investigate the relationship between dissonance and effort. The next set of needs is social, which refers to the desire for acceptance, affiliation, reciprocal friendships and love.

University of Minnesota Press.Cognitive dissonance is a very powerful motivator which will often lead us to change one or other of the conflicting belief or action. The discomfort often feels like a tension between the two opposing thoughts. According to cognitive dissonance theory, there is a tendency for individuals to seek consistency among their cognitions (i.e., beliefs, opinions).

When there is an inconsistency between attitudes or behaviors (dissonance), something must change to eliminate the dissonance. In the case of a. In his book, A Theory of Cognitive Dissonance, Festinger explained, "Cognitive dissonance can be seen as an antecedent condition which leads to activity oriented toward dissonance reduction just as hunger leads toward activity oriented toward hunger is a very different motivation from what psychologists are used to dealing with but, as we shall see, nonetheless powerful.".

The theory of cognitive dissonance was developed in by a social psychologist named Leon Festinger. It’s since become one of the most influential theories in the field of psychology. The Ben Franklin effect relates closely to cognitive dissonance theory, and generally suggests that someone who does a favour for someone else is more likely to like them or do another favour.

Cognitive dissonance is a very powerful motivator which will often lead us to change one or other of the conflicting belief or action. The discomfort often feels like a tension between the two opposing thoughts.

The cognitive dissonance theory
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