Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The effects of discrete emotions on risky decision making
by Sim, Hoeun, M.A., San Jose State University, 2016, 70; 10128437
Abstract (Summary)

Contrary to the dominant view that generally equates feelings with poor thinking, converging evidence indicates that decisions – including those involving risk – are influenced by affective experiences. Research, however, is limited to studies on undifferentiated, global positive versus negative mood states; less is known about the influence of discrete emotions. The purpose of this research was to extend the affect-cognition literature by (a) examining the effects of discrete emotions varying along the dimensions of valence and arousal, and (b) identifying the systematic ways that discrete emotions underlie risky decision making. We used a set of emotion-laden IAPS images to elicit and compare the impact of incidental emotions on risky decision making. One hundred and twenty-two undergraduate students were randomly assigned to one of the four affective conditions: excitement, contentment, fear, and sadness. Following the emotion induction procedure, participants completed the Choice Dilemmas Questionnaire (CDQ) to assess their risk-taking propensity. Results indicated an interaction effect between valence and arousal for positive emotions, such that excited participants were significantly more risky in their decision making compared to contented participants. The discussion focuses on the theoretical and practical health implications of these findings. We recommend that future research capitalize on the insights gained from emotion research and use it favorably to improve decision making under risk.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Oyamot, Clifton M.
Commitee: Asuncion, Arlene G., Feist, Greg J.
School: San Jose State University
Department: Psychology-Experimental
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 55/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Behavioral psychology, Experimental psychology, Cognitive psychology
Keywords: Affect, Decision making, Emotion, Judgment, Risk
Publication Number: 10128437
ISBN: 978-1-339-86449-5
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