Miller (1944) revisited : Movement times in relation to approach and avoidance conflicts

Boyd, Ryan L. and Robinson, Michael D. and Fetterman, Adam K. (2011) Miller (1944) revisited : Movement times in relation to approach and avoidance conflicts. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47 (6). pp. 1192-1197. ISSN 0022-1031

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Three experiments (total N= 291) sought to provide support for the idea that avoidance conflicts, relative to approach conflicts, are more difficult to motorically resolve. Conflicts were instantiated by asking individuals to approach desirable stimuli and avoid undesirable stimuli under conditions in which there was no objectively-correct direction of movement. To control for baseline movement speeds, non-conflict trials presented desirable (e.g., reward) and undesirable (e.g., threat) stimuli in the absence of any spatial conflict. In addition, movement times were isolated through the use of a joystick movement paradigm in which movement speeds were quantified subsequent to some initial tendency to move in one direction or the other. Consistent with hypotheses, all experiments found that movement times were slowed in the context of avoidance conflicts relative to approach conflicts. Results are discussed in terms of theories of motivation, affective processing, conflict, and anxiety.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Journal of Experimental Social Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? approachavoidanceconflictimplicitmotivationmovementsocial psychologysociology and political science ??
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Deposited On:
22 Jun 2019 09:19
Last Modified:
15 Jul 2024 19:33