The effects of utility value interventions on self-discrepancy accessibility, objective self-awareness, and interest
Lindeman, Meghan I. H.
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In a series of three experiments, the promise of using Carver and Scheier's model of self-awareness as a framework for understanding utility value intervention effects was investigated. Three experiments were conducted to guide participants to consider the utility value of their Introduction to Psychology course. Some participants were prompted to self-generate their own ideas about utility of the course (a self-generated utility value intervention), whereas other participants had ideas about the utility of the course directly communicated to them (a directly communicated utility value intervention). Some participants received one of the possible two interventions, some received neither intervention, and others received both. Across the three experiments, the extent to which utility value interventions highlighted learners' self-discrepancies, induced a state of objective self-awareness, and affected final interest in psychology was examined. Results of Experiment 1, but not Experiment 2, suggest that the directly communicated utility value intervention increased ought-actual self-discrepancies relative to a control group. Experiment 2 results suggest that neither type of utility value intervention induced a state of objective self-awareness. Further, the results of all three experiments suggest that neither type of utility value intervention increased final interest in psychology relative to a control group. Exploratory analyses were conducted to further understand the results. Overall, the results suggest that in the present samples, Carver and Scheier's model of objective self-awareness may be of limited assistance in understanding utility value intervention effects.