Personal social mobility beliefs and motivation for goals

Jeon, Byeong Chan (2020) Personal social mobility beliefs and motivation for goals. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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A major life goal for many individuals is to climb the social hierarchy and attain a higher social status than the one they were born into. People’s beliefs regarding the likelihood of moving up or down in social hierarchy (i.e., social mobility) can have a variety of downstream consequences (Day & Fiske, 2019). Across three studies, I examined whether people’s perception of their own social mobility relate to motivation to pursue their goals. In Study 1, I found a positive relationship between personal social mobility beliefs and hope, a motivational state involving goal-oriented thoughts. Next, in order to test whether personal social mobility beliefs can causally increase people’s motivation to pursue their goals, I developed a novel manipulation. The manipulation involved participants completing a test that purportedly assessed their personal likelihood of moving up in social status and provided false feedback regarding these chances (i.e., high vs low personal social mobility). In Study 2, I tested the viability of this manipulation, and in Study 3, I examined whether it would causally affect motivation for general goal pursuit, including hope. Although the manipulation successfully altered personal social mobility beliefs, it did not affect hope. I discuss the implications of these findings for research on mobility beliefs and personal outcomes.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 14967
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (pages 33-38).
Keywords: Personal Social Mobility Beliefs, Goals, Hope, Motivation
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Psychology
Science, Faculty of > Psychology
Date: August 2020
Date Type: Submission
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Social mobility--Psychological aspects; Goal (Psychology)--Economic aspects; Self-actualization (Psychology)--Social aspects; Self-perception.

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