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The Psychology of Online War Games: Understanding Player Motivation and Behavior

In recent years, online war games have become increasingly popular among gamers of all ages. These immersive virtual experiences offer players the chance to engage in epic battles and strategic warfare from the comfort of their own homes. But have you ever wondered what motivates players to spend hours upon hours playing these games? In this article, we will explore the psychology behind online war games, diving into player motivation and behavior.

Escapism: A Gateway to Adventure

Online war games provide players with an escape from reality, allowing them to step into a different world where they can assume the role of a soldier or commander. This sense of escapism is particularly appealing in today’s fast-paced and often stressful society. By immersing themselves in a virtual battlefield, players can temporarily forget about their real-life responsibilities and challenges.

Moreover, online war games offer a unique form of adventure that is difficult to replicate in other forms of entertainment. The thrill of combat, the satisfaction of strategizing a successful attack, and the adrenaline rush from narrowly escaping danger all contribute to an exhilarating gaming experience.

Social Interaction: Building Camaraderie and Teamwork

While it may seem ironic that online war games, which often revolve around conflict and competition, foster social interaction, they actually provide an important platform for building camaraderie and teamwork among players. Many online war games feature multiplayer modes that allow individuals from around the world to collaborate towards a common goal.

Team-based gameplay requires effective communication, coordination, and cooperation among players. Through working together towards victory or defending against adversaries, players develop essential skills such as leadership qualities, adaptability in dynamic situations, and problem-solving abilities.

Additionally, these games often have active communities where players can connect with like-minded individuals who share their passion for military strategy and gaming. This sense of belonging creates a supportive environment where friendships can form and flourish, both in-game and beyond.

Mastery and Achievement: Conquering Challenges

One of the main driving forces behind player engagement in online war games is the desire for mastery and achievement. These games often present players with various challenges, ranging from individual skill-based tasks to complex team objectives. The pursuit of conquering these challenges taps into the innate human need for competence and accomplishment.

As players progress through the game, they gain experience, unlock new weapons or abilities, and earn rewards. This sense of progression provides a tangible measure of their skill development and serves as a motivator to keep playing. The feeling of mastery over the game mechanics and strategies can be immensely satisfying, boosting self-confidence and providing a sense of personal growth.

Competition: Fueling the Drive to Succeed

Competition is a fundamental aspect of online war games that fuels player motivation and behavior. Whether it’s competing against other players in PvP (Player versus Player) modes or striving for high scores on leaderboards, the desire to win drives players to improve their skills, strategize more effectively, and invest time into honing their gameplay.

The competitive nature of online war games also stimulates adrenaline and excitement during gameplay. The rush that comes from outsmarting opponents or achieving victory against formidable odds creates a thrilling experience that keeps players coming back for more.

In Conclusion

Online war games offer an immersive experience that taps into various psychological factors driving player motivation and behavior. From escapism to social interaction, mastery to competition, these games provide a unique blend of entertainment that satisfies different aspects of human psychology. Understanding these motivations can help game developers create more engaging experiences while also shedding light on why millions around the world are drawn to this genre of gaming.

This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.


the psychology of self motivation essay

The Psychology of Self-Motivation

Post-New Year’s, only 8 percent of people  follow through with their resolutions. This indicates that only a handful of people possess the inner drive to keep their commitments. In other words, they lack self-motivation.

The reason why self-motivation is so important is that it determines our ability to complete tasks and reach our goals. People with self-motivation are also more organized and possess exemplary time management skills.

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Let’s have a discussion about the psychology of self-motivation.

What is self-motivation?

Self-motivation is an innate emotion that drives you to work toward your goals and put effort into self-development. It can also be driven by extrinsic motivation; this is when an individual seeks external rewards, such as money, status and power.

Self-motivation is intricately linked to emotional intelligence , which is a measure of your ability to recognize and manage your emotions, as well as the emotions of the people surrounding you. This interlinked connection between the two enhances your ability to understand yourself, relate to others and reach your goals.

The Psychology of self-motivation

According to Scott Gellar , there are three major questions that determine whether an individual is self-motivated or not.

  • Can you do it?
  • Will it work?
  • Is it worth it?

If you said yes to all of these questions, that means you’re self-motivated. The logic behind these specific questions is that they indicate whether you’re ready for the consequences of your actions regardless of whether they’re positive or negative. When you’re self-motivated, you feel competent in your ability to fulfill tasks and create a support structure  that enables you to feel motivated by allowing you to believe in yourself.

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The importance of self-motivation

External sources of motivation are likely to leave you feeling unfulfilled ; this is where self-motivation comes in. By allowing you to generate the will to do things, it makes you better-equipped to deal with stress. Self-motivation also leads to contentment and a profound sense of achievement.

How can you develop self-motivation?

Self-motivation is driven by a set of skills that are under your control. Setting high but realistic goals with the right level of risk is just one practice that can help you do so.

If you’re committed to a task or person, going the extra mile to achieve them can help you as well.

Other than that, being able to overcome setbacks you encounter and continuing to pursue your goal in spite of them exemplifies sustained effort and resilience , which can transform into self-motivation. And lastly,

Feeling good is the Fuel that drives Motivation

Take inspiration from the life of Steve Rizzo, who achieved stellar success in his life by practicing self-motivation. He was inducted into the Speaker Hall of Fame for being North America’s top business motivational and inspirational speaker. His distinct ability to relate with the audience, coupled with his talent to introduce a humorous spin in his talks, captivates people everywhere. You can book Steve Rizzo  for your next corporate event and also order his two best-selling books  online!

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Student Essays


Essay on Self Motivation | Self Motivation is the Key to Success!

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Self motivation is essentially important in our life. During the different phases of our life, we come across many ups and downs of life. There’s only power of self motivation that help us to stand out with resilience, courage and commitment. The following essay on Self motivation mentions the meaning, purpose & importance of self motivation, additionally it details how to have self motivation in life for greater purpose in life

Essay on Self Motivation | Meaning, Purpose of Self Motivation in Life

Essay Contents

Self motivation is simply the act of motivating oneself. But what exactly does it entail? Self motivation affects everything you do in life, from waking up early in the morning to complete your daily tasks, to studying hard for that upcoming exam, to working out at the gym when you are tired and just want to chill on the couch with a bag of chips. Self motivation is what makes you accomplish your goals and reach your full potential as a human being, and with it we can truly be unstoppable!

Self Motivation is the Key to Success

Motivation in life can come in different forms, it may be purely materialistic like wanting money or a nice fancy car to make you feel cooler, or it may be something that relates more to your life’s purpose like wanting to help others. It’s a great way to perseverance and consistency in life. Self motivation comes in all shapes and sizes, but what is important to remember is that it is completely unique to you. The best kind of self motivation comes from within, and requires a lot of introspection and soul searching to really understand what it is that truly motivates you.

How to Stay Self Motivated

So how do we give ourselves that necessary push to motivate ourselves? Here are some tips on how you can become more self motivated:

  • Wake up early. Like, as early as 5 am if you can manage it (or even earlier if you’re really hardcore). There’s a reason why all successful people seem to be early risers.
  • Plan your day the night before, and write it on a note on your wall, on your desktop background, or in some other place you will see everyday. A day planner also works very well if it is the kind that you carry around with you to remind yourself of what you should be doing at any given time.
  • Make a schedule for yourself, and include all the tasks you need to accomplish for that day. This will make it easier to do everything on time, without forgetting anything, and will keep you on track with your goals.
  • Take small steps to success. You don’t have to wake up early and immediately start running 10 kilometers. Just get up, have a shower and breakfast, and start studying or working out. Once you get used to it you will be able to do it without even thinking about it.
  • Once you start feeling tired or lazy, try doing some exercise or stretching. This will get your blood going and you’ll feel energized after that. Also, drinking a lot of water throughout the day will keep you hydrated and feeling good.
  • Remember: A new day will always begin after just one night! So don’t feel bad about the things you didn’t accomplish yesterday, because there’s always a chance to start all over again.
  • Make your goals SMART. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound goals will make it easier to stay motivated. For example, instead of saying “I will go to the gym three times a week”, saying “I will go to the gym every day from Monday through Friday at 5 pm” will make your goals more specific and measurable.
  • Find a workout buddy. Someone who is going to be able to push you to do your best and motivate you if you happen to slack off.
  • Listen to music while at the gym, cooking, studying or doing homework. Or watching a movie if you’re procrastinating on your studies. Music has the power to change our mood and can motivate us immensely!
  • Treat yourself, but in moderation. Buy yourself a new top if you’ve been good this week and have met your goals, or if you’re having a good day, but don’t reward yourself with that expensive ice cream or chocolate cake if you’ve been slacking off. Treating yourself is a good incentive to stay motivated, but don’t let it become too much of a crutch.

As human beings, we are all motivated by different things. It’s a way to self respect and courage.  It is completely natural to not be motivated about certain tasks at certain times, but what is important is that you are aware of what it is that motivates you, and then use these motivations to your advantage. Find your motivation!

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Psychology Discussion

Essay on motivation: top 9 essays | human behaviour | psychology.


Here is a compilation of essays on ‘Motivation’ for class 9, 10, 11 and 12. Find paragraphs, long and short essays on ‘Motivation’ especially written for school and college students.

Essay on Motivation

Essay Contents:

  • Essay on the Concept of Ergic Motivation

Essay # 1. Definition of Motivation:

Motivation is an inferred process within an animal or person that causes that organism to move towards a goal. Motives are inferences from behaviour (the things that are said and done). They may be conscious or unconscious. Motives also help in making predictions about behaviour.

The term motivation is derived from the word ‘Move’ or the ‘Motum’ which means to move, motor and motion. Thus, motivation is a force which energizes, the behaviour of learners.

Some of the definitions of motivation are given below:

i. C.V. Good:

“Motivation is the process of arousing, sustaining and regulating activity.”

ii. Lowell:

“Motivation may be defined more formally as a psycho­physiological or internal process,initiated by some need, which leads to an activity which will satisfy that need.”

iii. B.F. Skinner:

“Motivation in school learning involves arousing, persisting, sustaining and directing desirable behaviour.”

iv. Blair, Jones and Simpson:

“Motivation is a process in which the learner’s internal energies or needs are directed towards various goal objects in his environment.”

v. Atkinson:

“The term motivation refers to the around of tendency to act, to produce one or more effects.”

vi. Maslow:

“Motivation is constant, never ending fluctuating and complex and that it is an almost universal characteristics of particularly every organism’s state of affairs.”

vii. Crow and Crow:

“Motivation is considered with the arousal of the interest in learning and to that extent is basic to learning.”

Essay # 2. Characteristics of Motivation:

i. Motivation is a psychological process.

ii. Motivation is arousing interest in learning.

iii. Motivation is sustaining interest in learning.

iv. Motivation is directing behaviour.

v. Motivation initiates activity and brings energy mobilization.

vi. Motivation stimulates learning activity.

vii. Motivation is directed to a selective goal.

viii. Motivation is the internal condition or factor of learning.

ix. Motivation releases the tension and helps in satisfying the needs of the learner.

x. Motivation provides the energy and accelerates the behaviour of the learner.

Essay # 3. Types of Motivation :

Types of motivation are as follows:

i. Biological Motivation :

The biological motives are rooted in the physiological state of the body. There are many such motives e.g., hunger, thirst, a de­sire of sex, temperature regulation, sleep, pain-avoidance etc.

ii. Social Motivation :

Social motives are the complex motive states or needs that are the wellsprings of many hu­man actions. These are called social because they are learned in social groups, especially in the family or school. The social motives are general, persisting characteristics of a person that are learned and thus differ greatly from one person to another. Social motives are also the components of personality. Some impor­tant social motives are of — achievement, affiliation and power.

The social motives or needs (themes) can be measured by projective tests, questionnaires or inventories and by observations of actual behaviour in situations. Some important social motives are of abasement, achievement, affiliation, aggression, autonomy, counter-action, defence, deference, dominance, exhibi­tion, harm avoidance, infavoidance, nurturance, order, play, rejection and sentence (Table 10.1). People who express their power motivation by manipulating and exploiting others are called ‘ Machiavels’.

(a) Achievement Motivation:

Achievement motivation can be seen in many areas of human endeavour—life experience, models, parents expectations.

High achievement people are:

a) They prefer to work on moderately challenging tasks which promise success.

b) They like tasks in which their perfor­mance can be compared with that of others.

c) They tend to be persisting in working on tasks they perceive as career related.

d) They raise their levels of aspiration in a realistic way so that they move to more difficult and challenging jobs.

(b) Power Motivation:

Social power is the ability or capacity of a person to produce (consciously or unconsciously) intended effects on the behaviour or emotions of another person. The goals of power motivation are to influence control, cajole, persuade, lead, charm others and to enhance one’s reputation in the eyes of other people.

The ways in which persons with high power motivation express themselves are:

1. By impulsive and aggressive action.

2. By participating in competition.

3. By joining organizations and holding office.

4. By drinking and sexually dominating.

5. By obtaining and collecting possessions.

6. By associating with people who are not particularly popular with other.

7. By building and disciplining their bodies.

(c) Human Aggression:

It can be hostile aggression (goal harming another person), instrumental aggression (individual uses aggression as a way of satisfying some other motive); instinctive aggression (as a natural instinct); Frustration (leading to aggre­ssion).

Some forms of human aggression are given in Table 10.2:

(iii) Motives to Know and to be Effective :

These are some of the most persistent and powerful motives of all. They help in exploring and mastering challenges from the environment. Needs to know and to be effective persist throughout life and are difficult, if not impossible to satisfy.

(iv) Stimulus and Exploration Needs :

Human beings seek stimulation and sensation seeking. The stimuli usually sought are highly optimal.

(v) Effectance Motivation :

It is the motivation behind some competence activities. It is a general move to act competently and effectively when interacting with the environment.

Intrinsic motivation is defined as a person’s need for feeling competent and self- determining in dealing with his environment. It creates internal feelings of effectiveness, competence and self-determination.

(vi) Self-Actualization Motivation:

Self-actualization refers to an individual’s need to develop his or her potentialities i.e., to do what he or she is capable of doing. The motive of self-actualisation is related to effectance motivation and intrinsic motivation. Self- actualization is thought to be the top need in a hierarchy of needs or motives.

Going from the highest need of self-actualization down, the needs in the hierarchy are:

a) The need for self-actualization.

b) Esteem needs such as needs for prestige, success and self-respect.

c) Belongingness and love needs such as needs for affection, affiliation.

d) Safety needs such as needs for security, stability and order.

e) Physiological needs, such as hunger, thirst and sex.

These needs must be satisfied from lowest to highest (Figure 10.1).

Essay # 4. Forms of Motivation

Some forms of motivation are as follows:

i. Achievement :

David McClelland and John Atkinson pointed out that the effective functioning of society, schools, organisations and individuals depends, to a great extent, on what one wants to achieve. It is a fact, all things being equal, some individuals perform very well in a given task or assignment and some do not care at all about the performance or even the task.

This is because the individual’s behaviour is either directed towards success or some standard of excellence which is said to be the outcome of ‘achievement motivation’ or a need to achieve excellence in performance.

McClelland claims that the level of achievement motivation differs from one individual to another and, as a consequence, the level of performance differs on a given task. He further argues that the success of societies, organisations and individuals depends on high achievement motivation levels. Perhaps this is true.

The material advancement of most western societies may be ascribed to a high level of achievement motivation. However, to achieve one’s goals one needs to set aspirations at a higher level and try to overcome any obstacles to succeed. In a series of studies undertaken across the world by Mclelland and his associates, it has been shown that a higher degree of achievement motivation as measured by psychological tests is associated with superior performance in a variety of situations.

People with a higher degree of need achievement or ‘n-Ach’ have been found to show greater degrees of initiative, risk taking, and originality – all these resulting in qualitatively superior performances. These findings have certain implications for the economic and industrial development of different nations. McClelland has further proceeded to demonstrate that the level of the achievement need in individuals can be raised through certain psychological procedures.

Research studies have shown that the quality of performance of individuals in various tasks can be definitely improved by raising the level of their achievements motive. Such procedures are referred to as achievement motivation training. It has been found that the level of achievement motivation is higher in industrialised western countries compared to developing countries.

ii. Affiliation :

We find, that on the one hand, human beings try to hurt and destroy others physically, psychologically and on the other, we find them trying desperately seeking others, wanting to get close and be close to other human beings and become members of groups. This behaviour of seeking other human beings and wanting to be close to them both physically and psychologically is called affiliation.

The affiliation motive is aroused when individuals feel threatened or helpless and also when they are happy. For example, if you carefully observe groups of people flocked in front of a notice board where the results of some competitive examination are put up (most of them being strangers to each other), you invariably find all the failures forming a group, sharing grievances against the examination system, examinations, examiners and so on, while the individuals who passed the examination form another group sharing happiness, future plans, etc.

It has also been suggested that fear and anxiety are closely linked to the affiliation motive. When rats, monkeys or human beings are placed in anxiety producing situations the presence of a member of the same species who is not anxious will reduce the fear of an anxious one.

If you are sitting in a ferry which is rocking violently due to bad weather and are becoming nervous, you may go over and sit next to a person who looks unalarmed, composed and start up a conversation, because this erratic weather and rocking does not bother him. Schachter conducted a very interesting experiment on college students.

He divided the subjects into two groups- those who were high and those who were low on anxiety. Students of the ‘high anxious’ group were told that the experiment in which they had to participate involved receiving severe-electric shocks, while students of the ‘low anxious’ group were told that the shocks would be mild – like a tickle.

However, all these students were given a choice of waiting alone or with others. More than half of the students belonging to the high anxiety group had chosen to stay with others, and less than one third of the other group preferred to wait with others. This shows that anxiety and threat are closely associated with affiliation. However, where the degree of anxiety or threat is very high such affiliative behaviour is often absent.

It has also been found that early learning experiences influence this motive. Sarnoff and Zimbardo pointed out that first-born or only children have stronger affiliation motives than those born later, perhaps because they are used to receiving more parental attention during the early years.

Children who are brought up to be dependent or raised with close family ties show a stronger affiliation motive than those coming from more loosely-knit families that encourage early independence. It has also been suggested that affiliative needs are stronger in some cultures than in others. The Indian society has been characterised as being strongly affiliative in nature compared to many of the western societies.

iii. Power :

Mankind has always struggled for power. Cities have been destroyed, property looted and wars waged by people in a reckless manner to increase their power. Traditionally it was believed that power was desired by people as an instrument to satisfy other motives like greed, aggression, affiliation, etc.

In recent years, however, there has been emerging a different view which tends to emphasise the power motive as independent in itself and not derivable from other motives. Such a view has been expressed by David McClelland. As an independent motive the need for power expresses itself in behaviour which tends to control and influence the course of events including the behaviour of others.

It has been reported that to a certain extent the degree of power motivation is related to executive and managerial success. Behaviour ‘resulting from the power motive can take several forms like giving, taking away, giving up, etc. It is perhaps not out of place to point out that Indian philosophy placed emphasis on the power to give up or sacrifice.

The rishis of Vedic India derived their power and strength because they gave up most material things. In recent years considerable amount of research is being carried out on the nature and expression of the power motive or the need for power and especially on its relation with successful performance and effective behaviour.

Essay # 5. Theories of Motivation

These are the theories of motivation discussed below:

i. Arousal Theories:

These theories are based on the fact that under conditions of stimulation or excitation, there is a condition of arousal state reflected in the degree of activation of the various physiological systems. Biological drives generally lead to a state of arousal.

Arousal theories of motivation, such as those of Fiske and Maddi suggest that in general people are motivated to maintain a certain optimum level of arousal. Researchers have shown that best performance of people in general is accompanied by a moderate level of arousal.

While low arousal can result in poor performance, over arousal can be much more dangerous; this is particularly so in complex mental tasks. Thus there is an optimum level for best performance which varies from person to person, and task to task. In a way arousal theory can also help in relating motivation and emotions. Under high intensity of emotions, arousal level becomes high and emotionally aroused people also show a high degree of motivation.

ii. Incentive Theory:

Instinct, drive and arousal approaches  emphasize the roles of internal process in the process of motivation, though they differ from each other. Incentive theory on the other hand tends to emphasize events and elements in the environment.

While the former can be labelled as ‘push models’, pushing the individuals to move towards a particular goal or end state, incentive theories are regarded as “pull theories or pull models” in that these theories hold that environmental objects play a predominant role in pulling the individual more towards them or away from them.

Positive incentives stimulate movement towards them and negative incentives, in a direction, away from them. Now when it comes to defining positive and negative incentives, there are a lot of individual variations. Thus a music programme may be attractive to some, and a nightmare for others. Similarly the value of an incentive may also change with age and many other factors.

Thus, what is a positive incentive to a person as a child, may not be so when he grows up into an adult. The incentive theory in combination with arousal theory, to a large extent explains why people are motivated, even when there is no drive reduction.

A person who likes hiking or mountaineering, continues to do it and there is no question of drive reduction, as in the case of the basic biological drives. They operate very effectively in what may be called a “open system of motivation” rather than the circular models of motivation which seem to operate when basic physiological drives are involved.

iii. Operant Process Theory:

In centive values change and arousal levels are regulated to maintain an optimal level. Based on these problems, Solomon has suggested an approach to motivation called operant process approach, using both these assumptions. This approach tries to illustrate the concept of operant processes with reference to drug addiction.

It has been found that the first few instances of drug intake result in a flood of pleasure. This is followed by a decrease in pleasure and mild and unpleasant feeling of withdrawal. This in turn leads to a craving for another dose of the drug.

Gradually, the intensity of the initial pleasure decreases, with an increase in the intensity and duration of the withdrawal. This again increases a desire or dependency on further doses of the drug, more to avoid the unpleasantness of not using it, rather than for the sake of the original pleasure. This approach is very useful in helping us to understand the behaviour pattern in people, which makes them attracted to dangerous and risky activities.

Essay # 6. Models of Motivation

Some of the models of motivation are:

i. Animal Model:

Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution has formed the basis for much of our understanding of living creatures. It completely destroyed the distinction between animal and human behaviour explained by Greek philosophers like Plato and Aristotle who said that knowledge and ‘will’ are the prime motivators of human beings. Jeremy Bentham and J.S. Mill said that whatever gives great pleasure becomes a motivator.

However, Darwin’s theory was the first to show the world with empirical support that the basic processes in both human beings and animals are the same. It indicated that all human behaviour, like animal behaviour, can be best explained only in terms of instinctive forces.

This concept of instincts was employed to explain behaviour first by William James and later by McDougall who popularized it and made it universal. Then, for nearly twenty years, it remained dormant and unable to face the glare of other theories. This concept was restored by Sigmund Freud and to this day it enjoys the status of one of the master principles of psychology and of motivation in particular, at least historically.

William James Theory of Instinct:

James defined instinct as, “the faculty of acting in such a way as to produce certain ends, without foresight of the ends and without previous education in the performance.” For example, when the nostrils of a new-born baby are touched lightly with a feather or cotton the result is a sneeze.

Here, the baby sneezed without realising it and without having the knowledge that this act would provide relief from irritation. James claimed that instincts among men are both actions aroused within the person and actions that take effect on the outer world.

In the former he considered things such as ordinary reflexes like laughing when tickled, wrinkling one’s nose at a bad smell or taste, etc. In the latter category he included activities such as ways of dressing, eating, talking, thinking, etc. which are the outcome of learning.

He argued further that since man has a superior intellect he possesses few instincts of the former kind, but at the same time has many more varied instincts than animals. But these are concealed by the operation of his superior mental apparatus. Man’s great faculty of learning can modify or disguise his native instinctive endowments.

McDougall’s Theory of Instinct:

According to McDougall, “all human behaviour has an instinctive basis”. He claimed that if it were not for instincts man would lie inert like an intricate clock with a broken mainspring. He defined instinct as the inborn capacity for purposive action. Reflexes, according to him are activities which are simple and unchanging like sneezing, blinking of the eye lids, etc. while instinctive behaviour is complex, modifiable and adaptable to changing circumstances.

Some of the activities which he considered to be instincts are – food-seeking, escape, pleasure-seeking, etc. Instincts propel and direct the behaviour of the organism to achieve its goal. However, if the organism encounters obstacles, the striving merely intensifies until the goal is reached.

Instinct, according to him, is constituted of powerful impulses, a striving force, goal directedness and is constantly accompanied by an emotional component. This theory of McDougall’s may become clear with the following illustration: when a person is in his house and realizes that it is on fire he would be driven by impulses like screaming, running, planning and trying ways and means to get out of the house.

All this is possible because of the energy which is forcing him and making him strive only to get away from this disaster, which is the goal in this case. And all through this incident he may be undergoing an emotional experience-fear, for instance.

McDougall claimed that human behaviour could be explained through fourteen instincts which are listed by him. Some of them are – parental instinct, combat (pugnacity) instinct, curiosity instinct, escape instinct, construction instinct, etc.

He concluded his doctrine of instincts in the following statement, “take away these instinctive dispositions with their powerful impulses, and the organism would become incapable of activity of any kind, like a steam engine whose fires had been drawn” ! At least, the steam engine may have value as scrap material.

Criticism of Instinct Theories:

Instinct theorists have reduced man to an automation or animal activated by instincts. These theorists, observing certain types of behaviour which they believed to be characteristic of human species have declared that causes of such behaviour are innate, un-chosen and unlearned tendencies which drive man to act as he does.

Thus, they mentioned a survival instinct, parental instinct, and so forth. They seldom defined what they understood an instinct to be and took little trouble to explain how it functioned. They competed with one another in compiling lists of instincts which man was supposed to possess.

By the end of 1924 nearly 14,046 human activities were labelled as instincts in psychological literature. This indicates nothing but a hobby that consists of creating, naming and collecting instincts on the part of the supporters of the instinct theory.

The inadequacy of instinct theory however becomes more apparent when one considers complex human activities like learning, reasoning, goal seeking, etc. Man is certainly born with needs and instincts, but he is not born with the knowledge of those needs and instincts and how to satisfy them.

Some simpler needs are satisfied by the functioning of internal organs in the appropriate physical environment; for example the need for oxygen is satisfied by the automatic functioning of the respiratory system. But more complex needs, which require man’s voluntary interaction with the external world are not satisfied automatically.

Man does not obtain food, shelter or clothing “by instincts”. To grow food, to build the shelter or weave cloth it requires knowledge, judgement, consciousness, etc. Thus, the loopholes in this approach automatically gave way to the emergence of other theories which claimed to answer what was unanswered by the instinct theorists. A glaring weak point identified by sociologists and anthropologists is the inability of this doctrine to explain individual differences and group differences arising out of socio-cultural influences.

ii. Machine Model:

Learning Principles as Determinants of Behaviour :

A group of psychologists called behaviourists came out with a clarion call that all human behaviour, including motivation, could be explained in terms of learning principles. Only a brief note about how these theorists interpreted and explained motivation in terms of learning principles is made in this article.

E.L. Thorndike explained that behaviour or activities initially occur randomly and haphazardly. In the course of time, if a particular activity gives satisfaction or success, then there is a tendency for that activity to get established or fixed.

On the other hand when a particular movement or activity does not yield the desired results the feeling of disappointment and dissatisfaction leads to the discarding of that particular activity. Thus the ‘stamping in’ and ‘stamping out’ of any activity depends upon the consequences or effects that activity produces (law of effect).

With further experimentation these concepts were transformed from ‘satisfying state of affairs’ and ‘an annoying state of affairs’ to ‘reward’ and ‘punishment’. Later reward and punishment were highlighted by the other behaviourists and considered as prime and potent motivators of human beings.

Supporters of classical conditioning principles (Pavlov’s experiments on conditioning) claim that conditioning is the only principle by which all behaviour takes place and motivation is no exception. Conditioning sets in at infancy and continues until the individual reaches the last stages of life. Since all activity or behaviour as a whole is reduced to learning or conditioning, even elementary processes which initiate or motivate activity belong to this.

Clark Hull’s theoretical concepts called drive, drive reduction, primary and secondary reinforcement and incentive made a direct impact on the explanation and understanding of human motivation. B.F. Skinner, in his theory of operant conditioning or instrumental conditioning explains that the organism operates or behaves in the environment because of reinforcement.

This is clearly demonstrated in our daily life. When you have to teach your dog or child a few tricks, such as fetching things, sitting up, dancing, etc., if correct responses are reinforced with food or reward and incorrect responses are either ignored or punished, the occurrence of selected responses can be increased and the occurrence of incorrect responses can be decreased.

Skinner’s major contribution to motivation is his concept of primary and secondary reinforcers which are associated with primary and secondary drives. His idea of schedules of reinforcement added much more strength to the concept of reinforcement. Thus, reinforcement is considered to be the essence of human motivation according to Skinner.

Criticism of the Machine Model :

The machine model which is essentially based on learning theories distinctly contributed to our understanding of motivation is considered by critics as narrow, too ordinary and inadequate to explain human behaviour or even animal behaviour completely.

One gets an impression that the behaviourist viewed man as an ‘organic machine’ bound by two knobs called stimulus and response within which all the psychological processes take place including motivation. Critics consider reward and punishment as components of behaviour which facilitate motivation rather than act as motivators or springs of action.

Pavlov’s principle of classical conditioning accounts for reflexes in general and the acquisition of habits to a certain extent. However, when total behaviour is taken into consideration reflexes constitute only a fragment of human behaviour and this was considered as a major drawback of this principle.

According to gestalt psychologists, behaviourists first ask the subjects to step out of their consciousness and try to convince them that they are machines and that in order to emerge as better machines, they have to establish stronger connections of stimuli and response. They accused Watson that in his over-enthusiasm for making psychology resemble the physical sciences he degraded human beings who were already reduced to animals by instinct theorists into machines.

A powerful argument against Skinner is that his experiments were generally conducted on simple organisms like rats and pigeons with simple environmental conditions. This artificial type of simple experimental situation rarely occurs outside the laboratory. Behaviour, both of animals and human beings which occurs outside, is more complex than the behaviour which is exhibited in the ‘Skinner box’.

All the learning theorists have been accused of converting human motivation to the interaction of stimulus-response reinforcement; patterns which are not motivators but which facilitate motivation and result from motivation. However, despite the criticism these principles have been used successfully under various non-laboratory situations to motivate animals and human beings.

iii. The Humanistic Model:

The humanistic model of motivation is, in a way, a reaffirmation of a common sense view of motivation. It derives its views from the behaviour of artists, poets, novelists and philosophers. Towards the second and third decade of this century there emerged a group of psychologists who were dissatisfied with behaviourism on the one hand and psychoanalysis on the other.

Leading among the humanistic psychologists were Rogers, Maslow, Goldstein and Allport. They argued that psychoanalysis and behaviourism, though apparently differing from each other, however share certain common limitations.

Firstly, neither of them was based on an observation and analysis of the actions of normal human beings. While behaviourism was primarily guided by animal experiments, the psychoanalysts were inspired by abnormal individuals. It is obvious that theories based on such observations cannot adequately explain the behaviour of the normal.

Secondly, both these approaches were reductive in sense that they attempted to reduce all forms of motivation to one or two basic concepts like life instinct or biological drives. This reductionism has two implications the first being that while there can be a variety in human behaviour there is no variety in motivation and the second being that psychological motives do not exist as such and are only derivatives from physiological or organic motives.

The humanistic model while not denying the importance of organic and physiological motives, nevertheless, makes a positive assertion about the independence and primacy of psychological motives in and by themselves. Among the humanistic theories Maslow’s theory of motivation is the most popular due to its theoretical and practical value.

Maslow’s Theory :

Maslow complains that the earlier theories have restricted themselves to explaining one side of human behaviour, which is basically constituted by the darker, evil and fragmented elements or isolated actions under restricted conditions. His own attempt is claimed to be an attempt to supply the other side of the picture, the brighter and better half. Thus, Maslow’s was an attempt to portray a total picture of human behaviour as voluntary and purposeful activity.

Maslow’s approach is unique. He explained human motives or needs by arranging them in a hierarchy. This arrangement was made in the order of potency and priority of unsatisfied human needs. The hierarchy has different levels arranged in an ascending order.

However, an individual’s stand in this hierarchy is determined by either deficiency-oriented or growth-oriented behaviour. (D behaviour, G behaviour.) The person who is deficiency-oriented is one whose basic needs have not yet been satisfied and who is oriented towards achieving satisfaction and eliminating deficiency.

The person who is growth-oriented is the person whose basic needs have been satisfied and who is motivated towards self-actualization. This aspect will become clear once the reader goes through the hierarchy of needs. The hierarchy is shown in Fig. 14.1.

At the first level are the physiological needs. They are the most basic aspects of human motivation. These needs pertain to conditions such as hunger, thirst, sleep, etc. which are essential for maintaining life. Once these needs are satisfied the second level needs emerge and gain importance.

The second level needs constitute desire for security, protection and freedom from danger. On the whole these feelings pertain to the individual’s desires to attain a stable and secure environment. When these needs are satisfied, the third level needs emerge; they are love and the feeling of belonging.

These needs motivate the individual to have friends, companions, a family and identification with different groups. As these needs are satisfied ‘self-esteem needs’ emerge. This involves the desire for respect, confidence and admiration from others as well as oneself.

At the highest level is the desire to utilise one’s personal capacities, to develop one’s potentialities to the fullest and to engage in activities for which one is well suited. This level is called ‘self-actualization’. One can see how D and G behaviours interact at various levels of the hierarchy. The concept of self-actualization is very similar to the concept of “becoming” postulated by another leading psychologist G.W. Allport.

In this hierarchy it is assumed that the lower level dominates man until that level is fairly satisfied; then the next one emerges and then the next one and so on. However, Maslow explains that every individual does not ascend this hierarchy step-by-step; exceptions do arise.

An individual sometimes risks his life to save someone else or to save a valued object by defying his own safety needs. Sometimes individuals reject love, family, friends, another by committing suicide, thus defying the needs of love and the sense of belonging. Often people remain at a certain level, being content without moving up in the hierarchy.

The hierarchy, however, does not imply that lower order needs become dormant once they are satisfied and the higher order needs become active. In any individual at any time all the needs are active. The changes which occur actually refer to the potency or capacity of the different kinds of needs to motivate behaviour.

Thus, basic needs like hunger and thirst cease to be powerful motivators of behaviour once they have been satisfied to a certain degree. This actually means, from a practical point of view, that every category of needs has a limited capacity to motivate behaviour. Beyond this point of limitation, it is necessary to involve a higher category of needs to motivate action.

iv. Model of Unconscious Motivation:

Sigmund Freud was the first to unfold the ‘unconscious’ and the ‘poignant’ aspect of human beings in a systematic manner. Among the variety of Freud’s concepts it is ‘instincts’ and the ‘unconscious’ which assume great importance when motivation has to be explained.

The unconscious, as a theoretical proposition, has helped us to understand why we sometimes do things without knowing why we do them. He described three levels of awareness; the first being the conscious level which includes all the thoughts and experiences of which the individual is immediately aware of at any particular time.

Below this level is the preconscious or fore-conscious. This level is a border-line area consisting of thoughts, feelings and experiences which are not available at the moment or immediately, but can be recalled with a little effort. The third level, the unconscious, includes ideas, thoughts and feelings which cannot be brought to awareness or the conscious level by ordinary means.

These three processes can be inferred from the following illustration; if a college girl is asked the name of her fifth class mathematics teacher the student might come out with one of three types of reactions. She might straight-away give the name. This indicates the existence of consciousness. Alternatively, she might think for some time to recollect the name; this indicates the existence of pre-consciousness.

It is also possible that she may be unable to recollect the name immediately, but has to resort to round-about means by thinking, writing in detail or narrating in detail everything which she can recollect about school, teachers, subjects, lessons, etc. In the course of her narration she might hit upon the name of that particular teacher. This indicates the existence of the unconscious.

According to Freud, the unconscious consists of unfulfilled desires, ideas, feelings, etc. It is like a great underworld with powerful unseen forces which influence the conscious thoughts and the actions of man. Much of human behaviour is motivated by unconscious wishes, not only normal behaviour such as interests, hobbies, friends we would like to meet, professions we would like to choose, etc., but also bizarre behaviour, such as developing dislikes towards things and people for no apparent reason and so on.

Freud totally rejected the principles or theories which limit themselves to the analysis of observable and conscious behaviour because they cannot explain the underlying potent unconscious motives of human behaviour. According to him, unconscious processes which guide human behaviour can be known by special techniques devised by psychoanalysts. Some of the important techniques are free association, dream analysis, analysis of forgetting and slips of the tongue, etc.

Essay # 7. Cognitive Factors in Motivation

Given below are the cognitive factors in motivation:

i. Content Vs. Process Approaches :

Theories which postulate specific motives with definite end states are generally described as Content Theories. Hence it may be seen that among themselves these theories vary in the degree of specificity of content. Thus the classical instinct theories were more specifically content-oriented, compared to the needs postulated by Maslow.

On the other hand, there are other theories which look at ‘Motivation’ as a process set in motion by some disturbance in the equilibrium of the organism or its balanced relationship with the environment. Their causes may be internal or external. An organism so disturbed, moves in a direction so that it can reach another state of equilibrium. Such theories do not postulate specific ‘motivational patterns’ unlike the content theories.

In a way, the Hullian concept of drive can be regarded as a process approach. Hull, as the reader may remember, postulated that any ‘intra-organic’ deprivation results in generalized drive state propelling the organism to take recourse to actions which will lead to drive reduction, and consequently, re-establishment of a state of equilibrium. But the real process theories had their origins in Lewin’s field theory.

According to Lewin, the individual’s psychological field is divided into two broad regions, an inner person region and an outer environment. The ‘inner person’ region gets gradually differentiated into ‘tension’ systems (sources of motivation) and the outer environment is divided into ‘regions’. Whenever a particular tensions system is aroused or activated, the individual tries to move from one region to another region.

Let us take the example of a student sitting and studying. He is now in the region of studying. Suddenly he remembers that he had promised his mother to meet her at her office. This activates another tension system, and disturbs the equilibrium.

This can be restored only if he moves into the region of going to his mother’s office and meeting her. This process of shifting from one region to another is described by Lewin as ‘locomotion’. Lewin calls the activation of a particular tension system as vector. This vector has a direction and intensity.

Another process approach to motivation is based on the view of Vroom and is known as the expectancy approach. The expectancy approach attempts to explain motivation on the basis of certain expectancies or expectations that people develop. The first expectation, or expectancy refers to the link between effort and how far a person believes that his efforts would result in successful performance.

For example, if a student comes to believe that however much he studies, he cannot do well in the examination, this will result in low motivation or expectancy. The second expectation links performance and outcome; how far a person believes that if he performs well, the desirable outcome is reached. In the above example, if a student believes that if he performs well at the examination, then his grades will be high, this results in a high degree of motivation or expectation.

It can be seen that the second type of expectation (performance-outcome expectation) depends on the first type of expectation, namely efficient performance expectation. A third factor is known as valence. For any effort there can be a number of outcomes.

For example, a student who has a strong E-P expectation, and a P-O expectation, can experience more than an outcome. He may secure the highest marks with a commendation, he may just secure the highest mark or he may find that another Student has also been awarded the same number of marks.

Now each one of these outcomes has different degrees of attractiveness or valence for the student. This quality of valence or attractiveness of the outcome is another factor influencing motivation. For example, one student may not be interested in a ‘commendation’ and his degree of motivation will be lower than that of the one who values a commendation.

The term valence here is used to indicate, how attractive the outcome is to the person rather than the actual value. Thus in an organisation, an employee may value the nature of the work, rather than mere monetary incentive.

The table below shows how these factors can combine and influence the process of motivation:

It may be seen here, that the first expectation depends on how far the person has been able to perform successfully in the period. This is where realistic goal and task setting become important. The individuals’ confidence level should be pushed up. The reward system should also take into account the valences people have.

Thus a flexible reward system is likely to be more effective. Above all people should be assured that good performance will lead to high valence outcomes. The expectancy theory offers very interesting prospects, but is still to be established. Basically its emphasis is on expectation or ‘cognitions’ in the process of motivation. It may also be seen that this theory does not postulate any content based scheme of needs or motives.

ii. Level of Aspiration :

Individuals differ in choosing their goals in undertaking various activities They differ in how well they expect to perform in a given task, or what they expect to achieve in life, i.e., they differ in their level of aspiration.

An individual’s desire for distinction in a field of performance is known as his/her ambition. The level of distinction, or ‘how much distinction’ the individual wishes to attain from a particular task determines his goals. The selection of particular goals for which the individual will strive in a given task is called, goal- setting. This is influenced by ambition and level of aspiration.

What is Level of Aspiration? Level of aspiration is the level of difficulty of goals which the individual sets for himself. The term ‘Level of Aspiration’ was coined by Hoppe in 1930. He directly observed behaviour following success and failure; i. e, the effect of success and failure on goal-setting behaviour.

The level of aspiration for a particular activity is determined by past success or failure in the particular activity or a similar activity. Depending upon whether our aspirations are difficult or easy to achieve in relation to our abilities and environmental opportunities, we are said to have a high or low level of aspiration.

The level of aspiration is the possible goal (score) an individual sets for himself in his performance. Actual performance could be better than expected, as expected, or less than expected. It has been commonly observed in various experiments that successful performance leads to an increase in level of aspiration and unsuccessful performance (failure) leads to a reduced level of aspiration.

The individual’s level of aspiration in a specific kind of activity can be assessed directly and quite accurately. For example, a beginner in high jump will not expect to break the world record of 1.9 meters. So, he will not set such a difficult goal at the first trial.

At the same time he will not be happy or thrilled at setting 1 meter as his goal, since it is not at all a difficult one to attain. Gradually raising the bar and asking the youth if a given height suits him, one can determine his level of aspiration. But as he makes a number of attempts at various heights, he alters his subsequent goals based on the success or failure on each trial.

In experiments with different tasks, Hoppe observed an increase in aspiration level after repeated success and a decrease after repeated failure, which he described as typical shifts in aspiration level. After success, children showed increase not only in the level of aspiration but in the speed of selecting the next goal and their eagerness to attempt more difficult tasks.

After failure, the average selection time either remains approximately the same, or even increases, i.e., children took more time to select the next goal. The drop in self-estimation following a failure is expressed not only in the decrease in aspiration level but in considerable fluctuation or a slow, lingering process of selection of the next goal.

In addition to success and failure, level of aspiration is also influenced by the intensity of achievement motivation of the individual, the setting of the task, i.e., the presence, prestige and behaviour of onlookers, the individuals attitude, motivation, interest, sentiment, etc. towards the task performed, also other feelings like frustration and insecurity, his ego involvement, self-esteem, etc. In order to measure the individual’s level of aspiration, a number of laboratory experiments have been designed, of which Rotter’s and Kurt Lewin’s techniques are the most prominent.

Rotter’s Level of Aspiration Board :

Rotter used a wooden board with a groove, an iron ball that could freely roll in the groove and a wooden rod to set the ball rolling. It is called the Level of Aspiration Board. The subject (whose level of aspiration is being measured) stands at one end of the board. The other side of the board is marked from 0 to 20. The subject first calls out a number (between 0 & 20) which he wishes to be his goal. He is then given 20 hits to practice hitting the ball with the correct force so that it reaches and stops at that goal.

Lewin’s Level of Aspiration Experiment :

Kurt Lewin developed a technique for studying the level of aspiration, of an individual, to find out the process involved in goal-setting behaviour and the factors influencing it. In this procedure, the subject is given a number of trials on a task (like dart-throwing). Before the first trial, he is asked to express how well he expects to perform on the first trial.

After the trial, he is given the result (success or failure) and asked to state how well he expects to perform on the next trial.

Using this technique it has been found that:

(i) Success increases and failure lowers the level of aspiration,

(ii) Knowledge of how others have performed on the task also affects goal-setting,

(iii) Individual differences sometimes related to past history of success or failure in similar tasks or other activities (like school) may lead to differences in their level of aspiration and

(iv) As the predictions of success decreased, effort made on these trials tended to increase.

Lewin, based on the experimental studies, suggested that the subject appears to strike a balance between the likelihood of success and the likelihood of failure in achieving a given performance level. Lewin’s theory emphasises that values of success and failure at any performance level are weighed by a subjective probability factor.

In a given task, the highest performance level has high positive value of success, but, the probability of success is the lowest (e.g., bull’s eye in a dart game) whereas the lowest goal has a high probability of success and low positive value of success.

Essay # 8. Measurements of Motives

Direct and indirect measurements of motivation are discussed below:

i. Direct Measurement of Motives :

This approach believes in measuring motives directly through objective observation, conscious self-reports, administering questionnaires and inventories to assess specific motives as required by the experimenter. Many gadgets have been devised to measure drives such as hunger, thirst, etc.

These gadgets give a precise quantitative measure of the level of deprivation, physiological changes accompanying the drive and some behavioural changes as well. In this approach, the tools are structured and the responses are classified into predetermined categories.

ii. Indirect Measurement of Motivation :

It has been assumed by some psychologists that motivation cannot be measured directly, but can only be inferred through certain indirect means. Hence, they use projective techniques, where the stimuli are deliberately made somewhat ambiguous in nature and one is generally free to give the responses as one wishes.

Popular projective techniques used to assess motives are ink-blots, pictures, incomplete sentences and ambiguous figures. It is argued that chances of faking are less in this case, because the test respondents do not know what kinds of demands are being made of them. They will be more likely, in this procedure, to project their own needs and motives into their responses (at least according to the rationale of projective techniques).

One of the most popular projective techniques used in motivational research is the Thematic Apperception Test (TAT), originally introduced by Morgan and Murray in 1935. Since then, it has been used by others in both its original and revised forms as a way of measuring differences between people in their needs and motives and also the strength of different motives in the same person.

The TAT consists of a series of pictures about which the person is asked to write stories. These stories are then analysed and coded as motives, needs, wishes, desires and so on which are assumed to have been projected by the respondent into the characters in the pictures and which then manifest themselves as one writes about these characters in the stories one develops. The TAT, however, is not just a tool for measuring motivation. It is a test of personality.

The plethora of studies on motivation, despite their flaws, has opened avenues for human beings to understand themselves, their close and remote associates, and even the behaviour of people of other countries and continents.

The fact is, if one knows and understands motives, a large number of behavioural problems created by oneself and others are solved. One of the greatest favours done by psychology to humanity is its attempt to measure and explain human motives. However it should be mentioned that the methods developed for measuring motives are totally far from satisfactory.

Essay # 9. Concept of Ergic Motivation

One of the leading psychologists who has made outstanding contributions to our understanding of several aspects of human behaviour, R.B. Cattell, employs a term ‘ergs’ to explain the source of motivation. Cattell regards ergs as dynamic traits or basic units of human personality which activates and makes individuals move in a particular direction. According to Cattell, such motivating traits or ergic traits which have drive properties can be either innate or acquired.

According to him evidence based on biological comparative studies of higher animals, clinical studies of patients and also cross-culture studies of people from different cultures and societies point to the existence of between ten and twenty ergic drives which are characterised by “an innate preference to attend to certain objects to feel a specific emotion, to be impelled to certain kinds of motor activity and to be satisfied with a particular goal”.

Cattell totally disagrees with the view that all drives or motives are caused by organic factors and also that such pure organic drives or motivation factors are more primary than ergic sources like escape, assertion, curiosity, etc.

Cattell presents a list of such ergic factors under three categories:

1. Organic needs like, to seek air, to avoid pain, to seek water, and excretory needs.

2. Propensities which are organic, hygienic and appetitive: to seek stimulation, to avoid stimulation, to take food, to court and mate, to feed.

3. Propensities with no organic rhythm: to defer, to adapt oneself in the presence of superiors, to acquire, collect and posses articles which are useful, to seek, explore and manipulate, to seek the company of others, to seek sympathy and also group feelings, to assert oneself and dominate, to defend and resist any attack.

These ergic patterns undergo development and motivation and in this process, they interact with each other through processes known as fusion, subsidization, etc. A result of these interactions is the emergence of what he would call meta ergs or acquired dynamic traits. Thus, attitudes, sentiments and values are meta ergs. Cattell spells out in elaborate detail what he calls, a dynamic subsidization process, which is a process of transformation by which ergs get transformed into sentiments and attitudes.

A number of attitudes converge into a sentiment and ultimately these sentiments can be traced to certain biological ergic roots. Thus while the terms ‘sentiments’ and ‘attitudes’ are often used interchangeably sentiments are more enduring, general and broader, while attitudes are more narrow and specialised dispositions to perceive specific objects or events in a particular manner and are also accompanied by certain intentions to act.

Cattell while dealing with dynamic traits (ergs) makes a distinction between “purpose” and “purposeful”. Every dynamic trait or erg, initiates actions with a goal or purpose. But in many instances, the “purpose” is not conscious, but in the case of interests, attitudes and sentiments, the organism is conscious of the purpose the action is purposeful. But in the case of many basic and biological urges, the ‘purpose is unconscious’. Cattell, thus in a way certainly supports the role of ‘unconscious motivation in human behaviour.’

Cattell’s concept of dynamic traits, and the scheme of their growth maturation and development were arrived at on the basis of elaborate and detailed quantitative measurement and employing the method, which is known as factor analysis.

Spearman, Thurstone and others employed the method of factor analysis in studying intelligence and arrived at a set of basic abilities. Cattell employed the method of factor analysis to arrive at the basic units of personality, traits including dynamic traits, ability traits and temperamental traits.

The data used by him, include, L-data or life behaviour data (observed or reported behaviour in actual life situations), R-data, data based on Ratings and observations, and T-data, data based on scores obtained on psychological tests.

However, in analysing and understanding dynamic traits, Cattell attaches maximum importance to L-data, or life behaviour data which is based on actual behaviour. The reader may here see that Cattell’s analysis of human behaviour, particularly, the concept of dynamic traits has been one of the most thorough, systematic and elaborate attempts.

His views have been influenced to a large extent, by the instinct theory, Freudian psychoanalysis, the views of Allport, Murray and others on personality and of course the use of factor analysis by Spearman, Thurstone and others in studying the nature of human abilities. It is a pity that psychologists in general had not accorded the recognition that Cattell richly deserved.

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