The influence of positive affect on the components of expectancy motivation

J Appl Psychol. 2002 Dec;87(6):1055-67. doi: 10.1037/0021-9010.87.6.1055.


The influence of positive affect on expectancy motivation was investigated in 2 studies. The results of Study 1 indicated that positive affect improved people's performance and affected their perceptions of expectancy and valence. In Study 1, in which outcomes depended on chance, positive affect did not influence people's perceptions of instrumentality. In Study 2, in which the link between performance and outcomes was specified, positive affect influenced all 3 components of expectancy motivation. Together, the results of Studies 1 and 2 indicated that positive affect interacts with task conditions in influencing motivation and that its influence on motivation occurs not through general effects, such as response bias or general activation, but rather through its influence on the cognitive processes involved in motivation.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Affect*
  • Cognition*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motivation*
  • Random Allocation