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Crystal Clear app kfm home.png This user is a participant in the Motivation and emotion unit, 2010.
See also: Textbook
Writer1.gif This page is an e-portfolio. Also see other participants' pages.

About Me[edit]

My name is Emma and I am in my final year of an Undergraduate Psychology Degree at The University of Canberra. I am majoring in Law and Society and hope to pursue a career in Criminal Profiling or Forensics. This page has been created for Motivation and Emotion 7124.

I enjoy travelling and hope to continue travelling around the world to experience life, learn many languages and meet amazing people.

Want to go home? Motivation and Emotion


This online e-portfolio shares my reflections and notes about my journey through this semester of Motivation & Emotion. I have decided to structure this portfolio on a week-by-week basis. The information from this e-portfolio stems from lecture slides compiled by Jtneill which refers to the course text book Understanding Motivation and Emotion by Reeve, 2009. All references are from either lecture slides, Reeve (2009), or other sources mentioned in the E-portfolio reference list.

The e-portfolio covers a great range of topics in the area of motivation and emotion psychology. The following topics are covered.

Brain and Physiological Needs Physiological and Social Needs Intrinsic/Extrinsic Motivation and Goal Setting Control Beliefs and the Self Nature of Emotion Aspects of Emotion Personality and Emotion Unconscious Motivation Growth and Positive Psychology

Throughout this semester I hope to learn more about what motivates people to behave in a particular way and the ways we can apply motivation to everyday lives. I am particularly interested in unconscious motivation an how this influence ones behaviour in a deeper way. The physiological aspect of emotion also appeals to me, in the way that its interesting to understand what causes us to feel emotion. I hope this course helps me further understand the importance of motivation emotion to not only the self but to others too.

Week One[edit]

Introduction to Motivation and Emotion

Start of week one. My initial thought when i enrolled in this subject was that it seemed really interesting. After having a look at the unit outline online before the lecture I must admit I started to think that unit was going to be really full on!

After attending Lecture 1 I had a better understanding of what was required, but was worried that the ICT component of this unit would be too complex to master. I however changed my attitude to thinking that if I get on top of things at an early stage then my changes of success are much higher. I remember studying the topic of Motivation and Emotion in year 12 and really enjoyed it, and looked forward to studying it more in detail in university. I have summarised some of the key points that were mentioned in the first lecture, and have added some notes of my own.

Motivation = energy + direction. Motivation needs to be goal oriented and needs to have the power to achieve that goal. As mentioned in the lecture, the energy needs to be strong, intense and persistent and the direction needs to have a purpose. Motivation gives us the power to act and to behave in a way that is opposed to feeling passive and not having any power.

The four processes that give the behaviour its energy and direction consist of the following:

Needs: biological needs are primary. They include things such as hunger, thirst, the need to go to the toilet or maintaining homeostasis). Cognitions: forming meaning and understanding as well as being attentive to the goal orientated behaviour. Emotions: the thoughts and feelings involved, such as mood and attitude. External events: external drives that influence a person’s motivation to behave, such as monetary rewards, health benefits or unpleasant consequences.

A good example is weight loss. All four of these processes need to be satisfied in this order to build the strength and direction to carry out the goal directed behaviour.

One of the Harlem Globetrotters achieving his goal of a SLAM DUNK

It was interesting to then answer the question, how can motivation be measured? Motivation can be measured in four main ways. Observing and recording behaviour is the primary way of measuring motivation and is done by watching subjects behave in desired ways. Engagement is determined by the extent of conscious awareness and attention needed for the motivation. Brain and physiological activation such as brain scans blood pressure and other medical procedures can test physiological responses that can be linked back to motivation required for a particular health goal. Self-report does not have high validity but can be beneficial to testing motivation by surveying individuals.

In the example of weight loss, physiological activations such as blood pressure and diet can measure the outcome of the desired behaviour. The motivation itself could be measured by the engagement in the exercise routines through attitudes and mood.

I thought the book The Diceman by Luke Rhinehart sounded interesting that Jtneill mentioned in the lecture. This book is about a psychiatrist who decides to live his life by making decisions based on rolling the dice.

Week Two[edit]

How to use Wikiversity

Whilst it is still taking me a while to get comfortable blogging online, it has been made much easier by finally mastering how to work Wikiversity properly. It is rather exciting! I often get told that I ramble quite a bit so I think this exercise of having to blog and reflect about a particular thing will teach me something.

This weeks lecture was good, although i came in about 15 minutes late and missed the first part of how to actually start an account on Wikipedia. I turned to my friend next to me and was like 'I don't get this one bit!', she agreed. So i knew that it was just not me who was not understanding! I remember Professor Neill saying that you just need to play around with the site until you get it. Which is what i did when I got home that afternoon, and voila it works!

At the moment my main concentration is staying on top of this weekly blog as well as starting to research for my textbook chapter. I would be interested to know how to include images into my blog or just to my page, and I think it would make it look much nicer. If anyone knows how to do this please let me know!

The multimedia presentation that we have to do seemed very confusing before this lecture. It must have been the way I was thinking about it. I was thinking that if i was using my laptop, I would not be able to use the webcam (which is inbuilt on my laptop) to film my presentation. But thought, imagine if there was some funky website that could do just that! ...and then there came the discovery of Screenr. Professor Neill showed us this in the lecture but didn't remember what it was called until I wrote this post and went back through the lecture slides. So Screenr is an instant screencast recorder that allows you to film everything you are doing on your screen and upload it straight to Twitter. I am now less worried about the multimedia presentation now.

Swallow: Try new things but always know that there is sanction right where you started

I like the idea of using something like this opposed to say presenting in front of class members in tutorials. Although this type of online media presentation is something that I have not done before, I think that it will be fun to try out and will embrace a different style of presenting and learning. I also like it that we can view the last semesters e-portfolios as this provides us with a sense of guidance and structure that is required for this unit.

I am going to start researching for my textbook chapter this weekend, so that I can then write about my progress in next weeks post. The reason I have chosen the topic Sex offenders is that I find the topic of psychopaths very interesting from a motivation and social point of view. What makes these people different from the rest of us in society?, What is there motivation to act in such macabre ways? Is it from their upbringing (nurture) or their genetics that make them like this, or is it even a bit of both? Without getting off track, I am going to look at the motivation behind these psychopaths in particular sex offenders. I will draw from Australian and overseas research and will include case examples. so watch this space

Tutorial One - Introduction

In todays tutorials we did a few icebreakers to meet other people in the class, and then did some group work on what we thought motivation and emotion was. At first I thought this was going to be quite easy task, however trying to remember what was said in the lecture and think of our own definition was fairly challenging. Once we came together to compare our individual answers we all came up with very similar definitions. This synergy brought us to form our group interpretation of Motivation and Emotion. Our definition of Motivation was 'motivation can be internal or external and is what compels us to perform certain behaviours. For Emotion we had 'a psychological state of mind'.

I enjoyed todays tutorial as we got to discuss topics for our textbook chapter and we were able to ask questions about our e-portfolio. I feel like I am on top of things at the moment, including the e-portfolio. I have now managed to upload images to the Wikimedia Commons to use on my profile which was fun to learn. The only problem is finding the licence and abiding to the copyright laws of the images. This is tough, but I guess you wouldn't want someone using an image of yours without citing it.

Hard work always deserves a break

For next tutorial we need to complete an outline structure for our textbook chapter. This will make it easier to start the textbook chapter as it will provide an inviting structure of which the gaps just need to be filled in. We were advised to use other media such as youtube videos, other links to cites and images. I must prefer this type of assessment rather than a research essay or exam.

Week Three[edit]

Brain & Physiological Needs

This weeks topic was looking at the brain and physiological needs that are essential for our survival. The most important needs for us to survival is water, food and shelter. A very renowned American Psychologist, Abraham Maslow looked in detail at human needs, of which he places these physiological needs as the most necessary for survival.

Motivation is very difficult to measure. This is why we have to infer and create the construct of motivation so that we can measure it. We do this by observing voice, engagement and brain/psychological activations. It also can be measure by processes in the brain that release neurotransmitters. The four main neurotransmitters are Dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine and endorphin.

One thing I found interesting in this lecture was that with the emotion Anger, it is difficult to take on another emotion at the same time because of its level of intensity. The neurological chemistry needs to dissipate before any other emotions are adopted. This process can take up to 15 minutes. Remember being sent to 'timeout' when you were a kid? This is the reason behind it - the neurons need to synapse and disperse before you return 'calm and collected'. cool huh?

Another thing is the Drive Reduction Theory that was proposed in the 1940s by U.S. psychologist Clark Hull. He stated that all humans have internal biological needs that need to be satisfied. He called these needs and drives 'states of arousal' (Heffner, 2004). These states of arousal, such as hunger or thirst motivates us to eat and drink, in order to maintain homeostasis. The two hormones responsible for regulating hunger are Ghrelin (stimulates hunger) and Leptin (inhibits hunger).These hormones are registered in the hypothalamus and then stimulate the psychological feeling of hunger after floating around in the blood. For this physiological need to be satisfied, it needs to register in the brain.

 The body is your temple

-B.K.S Lyengar

Sex is an interesting need. Whilst it is not needed to ensure survival it is still considered a 'need'. If you look at it through the eyes of maintaining homeostasis, it reduces depression and mental stress by maintaing levels of cortisol in the body, which is known as the stress hormone. Reeve (2009) talks about Cortisol as one of the 3 most important hormones. The others being Testosterone and Oxytocin. Our sexual motivation has been seen to rise and fall depending on cues and cultural schemas, and is a more complicated need to thirst and hunger.

During this lecture we listened to a Life Matters story called Sex, Lies and Pharmaceuticals - Ray Moynihan and Barbara Mintzes. It was discussing how drug companies are creating a 'Pink Viagra' to target FSD. According to the Psychological Diagnostic and Statistical Manual Female Sexual Dysfunction (FSD) is an arousal disorder of which 43% of women suffer from. Whilst we are currently living in a sexualised culture, drug companies are trying to market drugs to people by making men and women appear abnormal, so they are motivated or driven to by there drugs so that they can appear 'normal'.

This was an interesting story, and the results even showed that Viagra and testosterone does not work for girls. These types of drugs work more on men who rely more on physiological arousal, compared to women who are more triggers by intimacy and emotional arousal.

Life Matters has great programs, such as How to Motivate Your Child for School and Beyond and How to Help Your Child Fly Through Life by Andrew Martin who is a leading researcher into motivation and children. It is on at 9am Monday to Friday on ABC Radio National. See link: Life Matters

Week Four[edit]

Psychological and Social Needs

So I'm pretty sure I am up to date with this weeks tasks, which is great! Except for this weeks tutorial, I am unable to make. Hopefully by tomorrow I would have caught up with the coursework I have missed due to work commitments. I just need to beat this procrastination, and motivate myself to keep on top of everything.

So on to this weeks topic of Psychological Needs. According to Reeve Psychological Needs are an innate source of motivation that generates the desire to interact with the environment so as to advance personal growth, social development, and psychological well-being (p142-143, 2009).

One of the important 'mini theories' that Reeve talks about is the Self Determination Theory which is a big component of Psychological needs. Proposed by Edward L. Deci and Richard M. Ryan, the Self Determination Theory is the satisfaction of the 3 fundamental psychological needs (autonomy, Competence and Relatedness) in order for a person to receive the 'nutrients' for optimal psychological growth such as happiness. These 3 needs need to all be satisfied, and can occur in any order. Unlike Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs which occurs in a sequential order (p145, Reeve, 2009)



Autonomy is the psychological need to experience self-direction and personal endorsement in the initiation and regulation of one's behaviour.

Supporting Autonomy

  • Nurtures inner motivational resources (encourage initiative through interests, preferences and competencies)
  • Relies on Informational Language (Addressing motivational problems with flexible and informational language strategies)
  • Promoting Values (Communicating importance of engaging in uninteresting tasks)
  • Acknowledges and accepts negative feedback (Turning negatives into positives, and accepting constructive criticism)

Benefits of Autonomy

  • Motivation (Conceptual understanding using self regulation strategies)
  • Engagement (Positive thinking and persistence in all areas)
  • Development (Building self worth, being creative and wanting a challenge)
  • Learning (Motivation to learn and having an interest to learn)
  • Performance (Academic performance)
  • Psychological Well-being (Vitality and life satisfaction)


Competence is a psychological need to be effective in interactions with the environment.

Involving Competence

  • Optimal Challenge and Flow (State of concentration involving holistic absorption in a task)
  • Interdependency between Challenge and Feedback (Maintaining the challenge and performance feedback)
  • Structure (Support and guidance for pursuing desired outcomes)
  • Failure Tolerance (Learning from past mistakes and turning them into opportunities)

Supporting Competence


  • Positive Feedback (Four Sources:Task, Performance Comparisons with Self, Performance Comparisons with Others and Evaluations of others)
  • Pleasure of Optimal Challenge (experiencing great pleasure from success from moderate challenge)


Relatedness is a psychological need that establishes close emotional bonds and attachments with other people. The desire to be emotionally connected to and interpersonally involved in warm relationships.

Involving Relatedness

  • Interactions with others (partners, peers and family)

Supporting Relatedness

  • Perception of a social bond (high quality relationships involving caring and accepting behaviours)
  • Communal and exchange relationships (supporting each other)
  • Internalisations (Satisfying others needs' to achieve ones own Self Actualisation)

As for Social Needs they have been defined as an acquired psychological process that grows out of one's socialisation history that activates emotional responses to a particular need-relevant incentive.

Examples of social needs are Acheivement... doing something well to show personal competence. Affiliation...creating the opportunity to please others and gain their approval. Intimacy... forming warm and secure relationships and Power... making a positive impact on others.

Abraham Maslow proposed a hierarchy of needs (see below) that sums up the psychological and physiological needs that humans need.

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

Social needs are (in Maslow's eyes) considered to be ranked 3rd and 4th out of the 5 humanistic needs. This shows that whilst those needs of love and belonging and self confidence are necessary, they scale above the more vital physiological needs of food, water, shelter and safety. I must say that to a degree i believe what Maslow suggests, but i disagree with the fact that each of his needs must occur in a sequential order.

Social and esteem needs, I believe, are just as important as Safety needs, and to a degree physiological needs.If these Social and esteem needs are not met, then a person can have great trouble forming intimate bonds with others, with personal achievement, being able to make something of themselves and others.

There are a number of reasons behind why social needs are so important especially among adolescents. Also, making sure that these needs are well satisfied at a young age will inhibit the underdevelopment of self esteem and the need for love and belonging.

The following YouTube links shows the way girls and boys self esteem can be influenced by friends, family and peers. I found this quite moving, and found that it shows the importance to address these social esteem needs with high priority.

Girl's self-esteem

Guy's self-esteem

Tutorial Two - Needs

Did not attend todays tutorial on Needs. However, keep an eye out on the development of my textbook chapter!

Week Five[edit]

I-E Motivation & Goal Setting

On my way to the Motivation and Emotion lecture today, I wondered to myself "what makes me come to this (or any) lecture if it is recorded? Why drive all the way to uni, if you could just lie on the couch and listen to it at the comfort of your own home?" and then i though, if I don't go then will i actually listen to it later or will I watch TV instead? All these thoughts came to me, and as I walked out the door and started my car, it came to me; this is called introjected regulation and identified regulation because it is a behaviour that i should do, and it is important if I go.

Thinking about writing this blog every week keeps me somewhat motivated to go to the lectures and tutorials so that I don't have to catch up and write about what I did the week before. So this is i suppose where I am building interest, to engage in this behaviour ever week, and hopefully others will be motivated to do the same.

Looking at intrinsic and extrinsic motivators of emotion can determine what is driving a particular behaviour. Intrinsic Motivation is relevant to an internal drive such as going to the gym so that you 'feel good'. An example of Extrinsic Motivation is going to work so that you get paid.

According to Reeve (2009) Intrinsic Motivation is the inherent desire to engage one's interests and to exercise and develop one's capacities.

The origins of intrinsic motivation form the basis of Psychological Needs that we discussed last week (Autonomy, Competence & Relatedness). The benefits of intrinsic motivation consist of persistence, creativity and conceptual understanding.Intrinsic motivation is also beneficial to optimal functioning and well being. ~ The greater we feel and think about engaging in a task and the more creative we are in completing the task will fuel our persistence towards the task and will overall have an effect on our well-being.

Extrinsic Motivation is an environmentally created reason (incentives or consequences) to engage in an action or activity.

The external regulation of motivation is made up of incentives, consequences and rewards. Some of the potential benefits of external motivation are behaviours such as preventing drink driving, looking after our environment through recycling, and getting people to engage in exercise. Whilst these behaviours are seen as 'not fun' or 'not achievable' the use rewards can make uninteresting tasks seem worthwhile.

Think about Operant Conditioning and shaping for those doing Learning this semester. Behaviour can be altered or a desired outcome can be reached with the use of incentives, consequences and rewards. However, don't get confused. Extrinsic Motivation needs to still be controlled by the environment to make you - the person- engage in the action or activity. Opposed to Operant Conditioning that is (as it says) conditioning you to behave in a socially desirable way.

Goal setting can have an effect on the environment of which our goal is being directed though. A goal is whatever an individual is trying to accomplish, according to Reeve (2009). Goals can be short term or long term and can go through a number of obstacles before they are properly achieved.

Rafael Nadal holding the 2008 Rogers Cup trophy2.jpg

Long term goals are more cognitively straining than short term goals, so one of the strategies to deal with this is by converting a long term goal into a series of short term goals. Also we don't want to lose interest in a large long term goal, as this can lead to cheating (Reeve, 2009).

An important factor for goal setting, is feedback. This not only enhances learning (Hattie & Timperley, 2007) but also predicts achievement. Asking yourself questions such as 'how am i going with this?' and 'can i do anything to improve what i am doing?' can facilitate feedback.

Something I remember having to do in grade 6 was create a List of 10. This is where at any given point, everyone should have a list of goals that they want to achieve. They can be short term (days, weeks) or long term (months, years), and it is important that we have a mix of both, such as 6 short term goals and 4 long term goals. It could be set out as followed (hypothetical example):

List of 10

1. Go to all my lectures/tutorials this week

2. Go to all my lectures/tutorials every other week

3. Keep room/house tidy

4. Go to the gym at least 3 times a week

5. Get more sleep

6. Pass my three units this Semester

7. Graduate from University

8. Be fluent in another language

9. Travel to South America

10. Have a family

Week Six[edit]

Control Beliefs & The self

So how much personal control do you think you have? I'd imagine that if one were to be asked this question we would likely answer 'a lot' or maybe there is a minority that will say 'none'. Nevertheless, our perceived control is significantly more or less than our actual control. Personal control is understood to be the control an individual has over their environment, as well as the power to influence outcomes in a favourable way (Reeve, 2009, p231). There is also a high level of expectancy of strength needed to alter these outcomes.

Just a thought... you may think that you have high personal control and the power to influence outcomes of everyday life, but think about those times that your personal control is vulnerable. Such an effect could be the consumption of alcohol or other drugs. You may believe that you have enough control to resistant peer pressure, and the social drinking environment and maybe even the expectancy of strength you have to influence the situation, but what makes you succumb to that round of shots?

Self efficacy looks at ones judgement of how well one can cope with a situation given the skills one possesses and the circumstances one faces (Reeve, 2009, p233). Personal behaviour history, vicarious experience, verbal persuasion and physiological activity partially create the extent of self efficacy. The other part forms the effects of self efficacy and integrate choice, effort and persistence, thinking and decision making, and emotional reactions (p235-240).

Wuzhen life.jpg

The self.... how do you see yourself? What are your feelings of self worth and value or your ability to perform on certain tasks? Are you confident and likely to succeed and have a good self concept? These are the types of self constructs that are talked about when defining the self.

Self concept is the reflection of the invariance people have discovered in their own social behaviour, through memory (Reeve, 2009, p268).

Identity is important in forming social relationships but also for the development of the self. It describes the way one portrays who they are in a societal context. Identity can and does take quite a while to form, and comes across a number of obstacles through out adolescent development. Once these roles are adopted, the true identity of the individual is exposed. This expression of behaviours, known as Identity-confirming behaviours and identity-disconfirming behaviours (Reeve, 2009) are established.

Self constructs

self-esteem self-concept self-worth self-efficacy self-confidence self-belief self-concordence (agency) self-identity

Tutorial Three - Self & Goals

In tutorials today we discussed the self and goals. We started by completing a university student motivation survey, that was designed to measure what our primary motivators are for studying. It also measured to what extent being a student fulfils each of the following outcomes; career, knowledge and skills, social opportunities, altruism and social power. We found out that the strongest motivator was career, by which we study so that we have better career opportunities. The weakest motivator was social power or reject alternatives, although there was no evidence to suggest that this was a motivator at all.

The other questionnaire we did was on testing our level of optimism. I scored alright on this. We had 38 questions that were based on attributions we make in particular situations. One of the questions made a self attribution and the other made an attribution for another person or external source. Once we added up our scores we disclosed them to the class, my score was a 5 which i recall being average for optimism levels. In the optimism book by Seligman (don't know the actual name of the book-Help?) he said that there are different averages for both boys and girls. If girls and boys receive a low score for their optimism, they may be a risk for depression. I guess this is a good way to test depression in kids in a less confronting way.

Lastly we went over how to upload a file on to WikiCommons from an external source (e.g. Google Images), making particularly sure that we follow the licence and legal requirements. (This i don't think i did properly in the first few weeks as i was too excited about uploading pretty pictures!).

Hopefully will get properly started on my Textbook chapter and get words on the page!

Week Seven[edit]

Class Free Week

Week Eight[edit]

Class Free Week

Week Nine[edit]

Nature of Emotion

How are you feeling today? In this morning's lecture we introduced the topic of emotion. Basic emotions are things like being happy, sad, angry, surprise, scared and disgust. These emotions are often culturally recognised. Advanced or other emotions are harder to observe and tend to be culturally specific (but not always). Emotion are made up of feelings, bodily arousal, sense of purpose and social expression (Reeve, 2009 p300). From an evolutionary point of view, emotions prime the organism to act quickly so that an individual can respond appropriately to a situation, whether it be a lifetime opportunity or a harmful situation.Emotions can be expressed in ways that are not always observable from others. For example, we can be sad or angry but not show and cover it up by other more socially desirable emotions like happiness. Other times we may feel only a little bit upset but over act these emotions by acting very upset to gain attention or make a point. Emotions do serve as a cause of motivation as they usually draw you away or towards something depending on whether the emotion is positive or negative. It can also been seen as a feedback measure for one's behaviour. If there is good emotional response to a type of behaviour then this can be an indication that the behaviour is desirable, and if the emotional response is negative then, it is likely the behaviour should be changed or the emotions should be redirected to positive behaviour.

Sadness.jpg Scared Girl.jpg Sadness 2.jpg Scared Child at Nighttime.jpg Grass of Happiness.jpg Angry girl.jpg Bathing in Despair.png Depression-loss of loved one.jpg She was loved.jpg Love heart.jpg

Many theorists have been interested in the topic of emotion and its causes. There have been 2 main causes of emotions; biological processes and cognitive processes.

Biological processess comprise of bodily arousal and social expression. Biology is the core structure that provides the basis of emotion where primary emotions such as anger and fear are emphasised.

Cognitive processes comprises of feelings and a sense of purpose. Cognitive activity is a valued requirement for emotion, by which it acknowledges the importance of primary emotions but focuses more on the secondary emotions. For example, fear is a primary emotion and anxiety (as a result) is a secondary emotion.

Feeling good (Happy, joyous, excited, determined etc.) can have positive influence on not only yourself but others too. People are more creative, more efficient decision makers, more social and more prosocial behaviour.

...MOOD and EMOTION... moods tend to be long lived compared to emotion which is usually short lived. Mood influences cognition about a persons thoughts where as emotions influence behaviour and their course of action. Moods are brought on by bad or ill defined processes compared to emotions that are formed from significant life events involving our well-being.

*THOUGHT* when you are in a good mood, your needs have been fulfilled or on the way to being fulfilled that you have more energy and motivation to help others. You are more likely to do a good deed on a day that you are feeling happy than if you were angry or sad.

Tutorial Four - Emotion

Week Ten[edit]

Aspects of Emotion

Do you smile because you are happy, or are you happy and that's why you smile?

This is a concept that is always a bit frustrating to understand, as all the theories sound pretty valid.

As we defined last week, emotion is made up of feelings, bodily arousal, sense of purpose and social expression (Reeve, 2009 p300). We also need to think about the physiological arousal (biological), thoughts (cognitive) and behaviours (social & cultural) that are present when forming our emotions. But which aspect comes first may you wonder? the though? the feeling? the behaviour?

Look at the following 5 theories that all try to explain why we experience emotion in terms of this one example. Example and theories cited from Heffner (2004).

Via Bagnera at night.jpg

Example: Peggy-Lane is walking down a dark alley alone late at night, when she suddenly hears footsteps behind her. She begins to tremble, her heart beats faster and her breath deepens.

James-Lang theory: Peggy notices these physiological changes and interprets them as her body prepares her for the fearful situation, and then she experiences the emotion of fear.

Cannon-Bard Theory: At the same time these physiological changes come into effect Peggy-Lane also experiences the emotion of fear.

Schachter-Singer Theory: Once Peggy-Lane has realised she is feeling fearful, she reasons that this is because she is walking alone in a dark alley. Because of this dangerous behaviour she feels the emotion of fear.

Lazarus Theory: this theory is similar to the Cannon-Bard theory in that Peggy-Lane experiences the emotion (fear) and the arousal (trembling) at the same time, however in this theory, Peggy-Lane thinks the footsteps are due to a mugger (cognitive process) and thus causes both emotion and arousal to occur simultaneously.

Facial Feedback Theory: as Peggy-Lane hears the footsteps, her eyes widen, teeth clench and her brain interprets these facial movements as the expression of fear.

These notes from today's lecture outline in more detail what each of these aspects focus on when looking at emotion. It also shows that the James-Lang theory and the Facial Feedback Theory are part of the biological aspect of emotion.

Biological, cognitive and social & cultural aspects are the main facets of emotion we focus on, and look at the ways in which we feel and label our emotions.

Biological aspects support a more contemporary perspective of emotion and proposes theories such as the James-Lang theory and other differential emotional theories. It also looks at the facial feedback hypothesis, which suggests that facial movement can have an effect on an individuals emotional experience.

James-Lang Theory suggests that we are happy because we smile, not the other way around. Therefore the physiological response comes first and then we label and adopt that emotion.

Facial feedback hypothesis suggests that the physiological response comes first alike the James-Lang theory. For example, if you are smiling whilst completing a task you are more likely to feel happy and enjoy the task at hand.

Cognitive aspects looks at appraisal, which is the estimate of the personal significance of an event. It brings up thoughts like 'Is this relevant to my well-being, and does this appeal to me personally', also it looks at an individuals coping resources, and determines the individuals level of fear exerted depending on their emotional competence.

The cognitive interpretation determines the appraisal not the event itself that causes the emotion, this is different to the biological perspective as it focuses the importance on the appraisal of the emotion.

According to Arnold's Appraisal Theory of Emotion (Reeve, 2009, p337) the following cognitive process looks at the action of a significant life event.

SITUATION: life event -> APPRAISAL: beneficial vs harmful -> EMOTIONS: like or dislike -> ACTION: fight or flight

Social & Cultural aspects combines emotional knowledge, expression management and emotion management. Emotional knowledge is gathered by other cultures informing us about the origin of our emotions. Expression management explains how we should express our emotions, and Emotion management teaches us how to control out emotions (Reeve, 2009, p337).

These social and cultural aspects also form a 3 way directional triangle that leads cognitive appraisal to social interaction, which then leads to sociocultural context all of which makes up the cognitive, social and cultural understanding of emotion.

Laughing Boy.jpg Smiling face.jpg Laughter 2 by David Shankbone.jpg Austin guapo.jpg

Note to self: must start to write textbook chapter.

Week Eleven[edit]

Personality and Emotion

Picture this scenario. You have just made friends with a new group of people outside of work and they have organised an afternoon bbq this weekend. You don't know any of them well and they have organised it for work people only. Do you go?

Looking at this situation in a personality context, in particular through the OCEAN model, we can see that certain situations can trigger different levels of motivation for individuals.

The OCEAN model also known as the Big 5 model of personality differences stands for Openness to Experience, Conscientiousness, Extroversion, Agreeableness and Neuroticism. Below is a break down of what they mean (Heffner, 2002b)

Openness to experience: refers to ones interest in new things, outgoingness, conservatism and conformity. For example: whether you would like to go to the same place or a new place for your next holiday.

Conscientiousness: Ones level of organisation and disorganisation, as well as their carelessness and impulsivity are considered. For example: how eager you are to finish your assignment on time.

Extroversion: Associated with high levels of happiness. Extroverts have low levels of arousal so they have to seek arousal from other sources such as action based activities and social situations. On the other hand introverts have enough arousal so they don't go and seek out theses situations. For example: nominating oneself when sober to do karaoke!

Agreeableness: Ones degree of being stubborn vs easy going, suspicious vs trusting, and their ability to be helpful and sympathetic or argumentative and strong-willed. For example: forgiving a friend for a dispute which you may have caused, but are adamant about not apologising.

Neuroticism: associated with negative emotions and emotionally stability for people with high levels of neuroticism. Being calm, emotionally stable and relaxed is common for those with low neuroticism. For example: getting emotional about little things that happen which would not normally make one upset, like there being no milk left for your morning cereal.

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From the above situation we may find that depending on if you will go to the bbq of not, will depend on the levels of the above personality traits. If an individual has high levels of extroversion and openness to experience they may be more likely than one who is introverted and is not open to experience. Whilst these traits remain quite stable in life, they can change slightly in some situations.

A study by Diener & Seligman (2002), found that students that thought of themselves as happy had significantly lower levels of neuroticism (emotional instability) and higher levels of extroversion and agreeableness.

Arousal is a BIG contributor to motivation.

A persons environment can act as a function of an individuals arousal (Reeve, 2009). Certain behaviours can increase or decrease the levels of arousal. This can be seen in the typical 'flight or fight' response.

Underarousal - people seek at ways to be aroused, like mentioned for extroversion. If there is no arousal sensory deprivation can occur. A continual and moderate level of arousal is ideal for the brain an nervous system to work properly.

Overarousal - people seek out ways to decrease their level of arousal. This can lead to emotional disruption (anxiety and irritability), cognitive disruption (confusion and impaired concentration) and physiological disruption (sympathetic Nervous System and hyperactivity).

Ben Cousins.jpg

Our good friend Ben Cousins, a former AFL star for the West Coast Eagles, is a good example of a sensation seeker. SENSATION SEEKING has been defined as “the seeking of varied, novel, complex, and intense sensations and experiences, and the willingness to take physical, social, legal, and financial risks for the sake of such experiences” (Zuckerman, 1994, p27).

SENSATION SEEKERS need a very high level of arousal to maintain a normal mood. if this level of stimulation lowers, then so does mood. Characteristics of sensation seeker are risk taking sports and behaviours, unusual situations and are more susceptible to boredom. This describes the way Ben Cousins was during his rough time with drugs in sport.

Zuckerman (1994) proposed a scale called the Sensation Seeking Scale (SSS) which can act as a predictor of addictions such as gambling and alcoholism.

To end off todays lecture we looked at perceived control. How much control does one have over a situation? How can you be 100% sure that you wont get addicted to gambling or alcohol after the first couple of times?

1. The individual must be capable at achieving the desired outcome 2. The situation that one attempts to act on needs to be predictable and responsive.

The amount of perceived control one might have can be high or low. The level can determine things like goal setting, task choice, effort, concentration and problem-solving strategies. The needs to be high engagement for there to be actual outcomes (Reeve, 2009).

Tutorial Five - Personality and Emotion

Week Twelve[edit]

Unconscious Motivation

Today's lecture was on unconscious motivation. This particular topic really interested me, purely from just the name - unconscious motivation. To me, I think that we can be motivated unconsciously, but how? It made me think about my textbook chapter (Motivation of Serial Sex offenders) and an interview i watched about how one particular offender did not 'consciously' know what he was doing. This is quite shocking as i think about how you could NOT know you were committing an act of crime like that. Lets see what is said in the lecture, and try to answer the question - how are we motivated unconsciously?

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Sigmund Freud believes, and formed as part of his Psychodynamic theory, that theses please seeking drives are battling unconsciously in ones mind, causing anxiety and stress if they are not satisfied. Because this all happens unconsciously, Freud's representation of this is marked by the ID, EGO and SUPER EGO.

ID: psychological experience of the collective needs for pleasure (include explicit and implicit needs). The ID is often symbolised by a devil. EGO: Is the control centre for these needs and adapts to environment to which these needs present themselves, also known as the 'Reality Principle'. SUPER EGO: is the moral part, by which expresses feelings of guilt and conscious thought to counteract the unacceptable drives the ID presents. The SUPER EGO is often referred to as the conscious because it considers the belief of right and wrong, and symbolised as an angel.

For example in the case of an extramarital affair, one could suggest that the ID is responsible for the sexual need, the EGO will look at the reality of the situation and will allow the behaviour eventually but makes the individual consider the actual behaviour given the situation at the time. The SUPER EGO would consider the moral implications and that this is illegal and differentiates between right and wrong. The SUPER EGO aims to suppress the unacceptable urges of the ID and to encourage the EGO to consider the reality of the situation.

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Freud states that the ego is the strongest component of the non-conscious (made up of preconscious and unconscious) as it needs to satisfy the needs of the id. If the id gets too strong, impulses and self gratification take over the person's life (which could be a factor in the development of a serial sex offender). If the superego becomes to strong, the persons morals and judgments would be affected causing their thoughts, decisions and behaviours to weaken (Heffner, 2004d).

Another interesting component of unconscious motivation is the use of defence mechanisms. When there in an inconsistency between keeping the ID and the SUPER EGO happy the EGO adopts a defence mechanism. These defences are well used by everyone.

Denial Displacement Projection Rationalisation Reaction Formation Regression Repression Sublimation Suppression

As we know these defence mechanisms are used by the EGO, they sit between the preconscious and the unconscious. Some of these defence mechanisms such as repression can be pulled into the unconscious more, which can then be 'forgotten'. Once these events or situations are put into the unconscious, they are often difficult to extract, hence forming one of the limitations to this type of motivation. When it comes to explaining the motivation behind serial sex offenders (textbook chapter topic) defence mechanisms such as repression can be considered.

Week Thirteen[edit]

Growth & Positive Psychology


Be positive and take that chance.... you may find its just what you need to GROW as a person.

Ever thought about skydiving?
Starting a band?
Go to Paris?
Studying a new religion?
Studying a new language perhaps?
Dating that new guy/girl?
Start Yoga?
What every you decide to do always remember to smile

The holistic view of psychology suggests that humans are viewed as a whole and in a positive way (Reeve, 2009, 419-421). It finds its roots in the humanistic psychological thought and is often combined with positive psychology as it enhances the focus of growth on human potential and self discovery. Positive Psychology gives attention to the building of self competencies and finds way for fulfilment and happiness.

Humanistic - developed as a result of behaviourism and psychoanalysis which focused on personal growth, and self actualisation. Maslow and Rogers are the main theorists for this school of thought.

Behaviourism - all about observable behaviour and the environment. Theorists such as Watson, Pavlov and Skinner take this view.

Growth takes time... there are ways to encourage growth, but sometimes it just takes time and varied experiences (Reeve, 2009, p 424-425).

Make growth choices - Be honest - Situationally position yourself for peak experiences - Give up defensiveness - Let the self emerge - Be open to experience

Maslow's hierarchy of needs demonstrates that after achieving his proposed 'lower needs' one moves onto 'higher needs' of which SELF ACTUALISATION is the trophy need. Maslow describes the characteristics of individuals who have achieved self actualisation (Maslow, 1970). They consist of the following...

Acceptance and Realism: Self actualised people accept themselves for who they are and have realistic views of themselves and others.

Problem-centering: Self actualised people are motivated by personal and social responsibility outside of themselves.

Spontaneity: Self actualised people are open to new experiences and spontaneous in their thoughts and behaviours.

Autonomy and solitude: Self actualised people are independent and focus on fully developing their inner potential.

Continued freshness of appreciation: Self actualised people have a high appreciation for the world and treat every little experience as a way to built inner potential with inspiration and gratitude.

Peak experiences: Self actualised people experience 'peak experiences' where moments of heightened excitement, wonder and amazement are felt. This leaves the individual with a sense of strength and encouragement.

If you have a positive reflection of your self then you are more likely to have better mental health.

Making yourself happy

Eudaimonic well-being is a more deeper, dynamic and authentic type of happiness. It involves prolonging inner fulfilment and positive energy that one creates themself - the optimal self actualisation (based on Reeve 2009,p 441-443).


Evil on the other hand is formed when experience injures and damages the person. Thus making the person not whole anymore. This is uncharacteristic of the holistic approach but shows that despite humans having a internal state of both benevolence and malevolence, the human body needs to combat and internalise these urges to expel evil.

Want to know how self actualised you are? Go to this site How Self Actualised are You???

Tutorial Six - Psychological Growth

Week Fourteen[edit]

Summary and Conclusion

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There have been a lot of interesting topics that have been discussed this semester. Week 1 covered the introduction to Motivation and Emotion, and looked at the meaning of motivation. We learnt that motivation =energy + direction.

In Week 2, Wikiversity was introduced. Getting used to blogging and keeping a weekly journal was this weeks challenge. Learning how to upload pictures and deciding on a textbook chapter topic was also considered.

Week 3 came along and this is where it all started. Brain and physiological needs were discussed, we looked at neurotransmitters, Drive Reduction Theory and sexual needs. Female Viagra was discussed in a Life Matters radio program which showed the connection between the brain and physiological needs.

Once Week 4 came, Maslow was discussed as part of psychological and social needs. Autonomy, Competence and Relatedness were outlined and represented the importance of 'mini theories' in particular the Self Determination Theory proposed by Deci and Ryan.

Intrinsic and Extrinsic motivation and Goal Setting was Week 5's topic. Do we complete a task because we have an inner need to do so or do we do it because of an external force? This question is answered in this weeks discussion. A list of 10 was also completed to show the importance of goal setting.

Week 6 we looked at the self. Self efficacy and personal control were the main concepts discussed in the topic of control beliefs and the self. How an individual sees themselves through their self concept, self identity and self construct was all considered.

Lucky for us, Week 7 and Week 8 were class free weeks and were assigned for getting started on our textbook chapters and catching up on previous weeks of work.

The second part of the semester focused on Emotion. This topic introduced Week 9's Nature of Emotion. Both biological and cognitive processes of the cause of emotion are discussed along with the importance of mood on emotion.

Week 10 Aspects of emotion were looked at in particular the different theories regarding why we experience emotion. Theories such as the James-Lang Theory, Cannon-Bard and Facial Feedback Theory are looked at along side a short case study.

Personality and Emotion was Week 11s topic. The OCEAN model of personality was discussed in detail as well as the importance of arousal and its contribution to motivation. Sensation seekers are seen as common representations of over arousal.

Our father of Unconscious Motivation was the talk of Week 12. Sigmund Freud's Psychodynamic Theory and Defence Mechanisms were the basis of this weeks entry. This weeks topic was very relevant to my textbook chapter topic.

Lastly, in Week 13 we looked at Growth and Positive Psychology. This topic had a more spiritual feel too it, which made me more inspired to think a bit deeper than usual, in terms of personal growth. Maslow's highest need, Self Actualisation was thoroughly discussed in terms of its relevance to personal growth.

Summing up, I have thoroughly enjoyed this topic of Motivation and Emotion, purely due to the creative nature of its assessments and relaxed approach to learning. This course has given me the ability to deeply understand the meaning of motivation and emotion as well as look at what motivates us and humans and why and how we feel emotion. This course has also helped me to further understand how motivation and emotion affects me on not only an individual level but on a group level too. I also learnt more about unconscious motivation and the use of defence mechanisms and saw how they do apply in a real life setting. I also experienced a variety of emotions though the journey of completing the assessment, all of which ended in an overall great feeling of satisfaction. This sense of satisfaction transferred to excitement after the announcement of the publication of our textbook chapters.

I enjoyed completing my textbook chapter and am very excited about it be published. I think having students assessment being published shows that our hard work and efforts are acknowledged and subsequently rewarded. This subject had improved my generic skills of communication, ICT and Social responsibility as suggested by Jtneill

The textbook provided sufficient information surrounding the topic of motivation and emotion and did so in a simple and clear to understand manner. Whilst I do have a preference for exams over written comprehensive assessment, this subject has explored different ways of assessing understanding which I have enjoyed very much.

I hope to add to this Wikiversity e-portfolio in other studies and share with others what I learn.

Thanks :)

Review and Feedback

What has been the single most valuable theoretical insight you gained in this course? The most valuable theoretical insight I gained in this course was that of Abraham Maslow. His Hierarchy of Needs triangle is so much more than just what meets the eye. The complex achievement of Self Actualisation and its components provides a structure for further personal growth and potential. It also looks at basic needs of food and water, as well as self-esteem needs and love and belonging. This theoretical triangle can be applied to any aspect of psychology.

What has been the single most valuable practical benefit you gained in this course? The most practical benefit I have gained in this course would be the creativity component of the assessment. It is often difficult to think outside the square when most of the assessment for psychology courses comprises of a research essay, tutorial participation and a final exam. I loved that this course took a different approach to learning and allowed those with a creative touch put their ideas to work.

What worked for you? I enjoyed working on my e-portfolio on a week-by-week basis as this allowed me to keep on top of everything. It also gave me a sense of peace and assurance that ones it was done each Wednesday afternoon that I had the rest of the week to work on my other subjects coursework. I also like the fact there was no exam, as this eases the end of term stress that is accompanied by multiple exams.

What didn't work so well for you? i didn't like that all our assessment was due at the very end of the term as this means that we don't find out our grades until after the exam period.

How could this unit be improved? I think the textbook chapter should be due around week 7 and the multimedia due around week 8 (depending on where the class free period sits) as this gives us enough time to see how our grades are sitting, as where we can improve.

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Hattie, J., & Timperley, H. (2007). The power of feedback. Review of Educational Research, 77(1), 81-112.

Heffner, C. L. (2004a). Psychology 101: Chapter 7: Motivation and Emotion, Motivation, Last Updated March 11, 2004;

Heffner, C. L. (2004b). Personality Synopsis: Chapter 7: Trait Theory, Last Updated March 11, 2004;

Heffner, C. L. (2004c). Psychology 101: Chapter 7: Motivation and Emotion, Emotion, Last Updated March 11, 2004;

Heffner, C. L. (2004d). Psychology 101: Chapter 3: Personality Development", Last Updated March 11, 2004;

Maslow, A. (1970). Motivation and personality (2nd ed.). New York: Harper & Row.

Reeve, J. (2009). Understanding motivation and emotion (5th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

YouTube Videos

RandomFlicks. (2010, May 10). A Flicks film - Guy's self-esteem, [video file]. Retrieved from

fthewinterdotcom. (2009, October 9). A Dove film - Girl's self-esteem, [video file]. Retrieved from


This 5 min instructional video explains the main content covered in the textbook chapter. Please follow the below link to view the multimedia presentation. The program used for this assessment was Screenr.

The Motivation of Serial Sex Offenders

Please feel free to leave comments or suggestions, as I am open to feedback. Thanks!

Textbook chapter[edit]