Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
In the first two studies, subjects were induced into a positive, negative or neutral mood using the Velten mood induction procedure, and then exposed to information about an attitude object they knew little about. According to Bower's mood-congruity hypothesis, subjects in a good mood should remember more of the positive information, whereas subjects in a negative mood should remember more of the negative information. Because of this differential recall of material, subjects in a good mood should form a more favourable attitude than subjects in a negative mood. The material that subjects remembered did not conform to these predictions. Still, mood influenced the attitudes subjects formed. In the first study, subjects in a good mood showed more positive attitude change than other subjects, while in the second study, subjects in a negative mood reported a more negative attitude. Finally, when given a list of the original statements, subjects in the first experiment evaluated them in a manner consistent with their mood. These results are consistent with predictions derived from the reinforcement-affect model.;In the last two studies, the effect of mood on existing attitudes was examined. In the third study, subjects were divided into three attitude groups (positive, neutral and negative) on the basis of their responses to a pre-experimental attitude measure. Under the influence of the Velten mood cards, subjects were asked to rate their attitude toward being religious and to list any advantages and disadvantages of being religious. Contrary to Bower's model, subjects in a good mood did not recall more advantages nor did subjects in a bad mood recall more disadvantages. Still, among subjects who were neutral towards religion and who rated their attitude toward being religious before listing their beliefs, elated subjects expressed a more positive attitude than others. In the fourth study, in which extreme attitude subjects were excluded, subjects in a negative mood showed more negative attitude change than other subjects. Evaluation ratings, whether of statements subjects generated (study 3) or from a list of statements provided by the experimenter (study 4), were not influenced by mood.
Finegan, Joan Ellen, "Mood, Attitudes, And Memory" (1986). Digitized Theses. 1548.