Friday, December 29, 2006

Achievement and power motives, performance feedback, and creativity

Fodor & Carver (2000) Investigated if need for achievement measured by the TAT enhances creative performance in response to feedback concerning a prior performance. 144 undergraduates' TAT was scored for achievement motivation and power motivation. Ss later provided a solution to an engineering problem. The experimenter then gave them preprogrammed feedback on how well they performed (positive or negative feedback) and no feedback in a third condition. Feedback was couched in the language of both achievement and power imagery. Last, students rendered solutions to a second engineering problem. Two students performed ratings of each solution on dimensions designated as creativity and complexity. Ratings for the two dimensions moderately correlated with one another and were combined to form a single overall Creativity score. Achievement motivation correlated positively with Creativity score in the positive- and negative-feedback conditions. Power motivation correlated positively with Creativity in the positive-feedback condition, and negatively in the negative-feedback condition. Neither was significant in the no feedback condition. It was concluded that there is a differential response to negative feedback. Achievement-motivated people appear to benefit from it, whereas power-motivated people do not.

Fodor, Eugene M., Carver, Rodney A. (2000). Achievement and power motives, performance feedback, and creativity. Journal of Research in Personality. Vol 34 (4): 380-396


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