An Examination Of Emotion In Social And Cognitive Processes
Chapter 1 compared two lines of research that have examined the effects of cognitive load on emotions. One has shown that the emotions elicited by passive viewing of emotional images are reduced by cognitive load. Another has shown that, when maintained, emotions are not reduced by cognitive load. Participants either passively viewed, or maintained the emotions elicited by, negative emotional images, and after a delay rated their emotional intensity. Half of trials included cognitive load during the delay. Results showed cognitive load reduced emotional intensity during passive-viewing, but not during emotion maintenance. The present study replicates the both previous findings, showing the key factor is whether or not emotions are maintained. Chapter 1's results suggested high trait positive affect may be associated with higher intensity negative emotions, relative to low trait positive affect. Chapter 2 tested this idea with data from two samples. Participants self-reported either state-level (Sample 1) or trait-level affect (Sample 2). Then each participant performed a task that involved viewing negative emotional images, and rating the images' emotional intensity. Results indicated both state negative affect (Sample 1) and trait positive affect (Sample 2) correlated positively with image intensity ratings. The state negative affect finding is consistent with previous mood congruence research. The trait positive affect finding is consistent with Chapter 1, though a full understanding will require further research. Chapter 3 evaluated whether the shortage of Millennial students pursuing STEM is associated with their preference for work/life-interaction-a preference inconsistent with traditional science careers. We created two lab recruitment videos depicting contrasting approaches to running STEM labs and training students: A work-focused video and a work/life-interaction-focused video. In Study 3.1, current professors rated the videos, and confirmed the two videos reflected real-world differences in training approaches. In Study 3.2, current STEM students watched one of the two videos, and completed surveys. The work/life-interaction-focused video participants reported a greater sense of belonging to and desire to participate in the lab, relative to the work-focused video participants. This suggests Millennials possess a strong desire for work/life-interaction, which runs counter to the traditional lab-training model.
emotion; working memory; work-life interaction
Depue,Richard Allen; Williams,Wendy M
Ph. D., Developmental Psychology
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis