Need for achievement moderates the effect of motive-relevant challenge on salivary cortisol changes

Yang, Fang, Ramsay, Jonathan E., Schultheis, Oliver C., and Pang, Joyce S. (2015) Need for achievement moderates the effect of motive-relevant challenge on salivary cortisol changes. Motivation and Emotion, 39 (3). pp. 321-334.

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Abstract

The hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis plays a key role in the physiological response to stress, preparing the organism for appropriate action. While some research has examined universally relevant threats, other research has suggested that individual differences may moderate the relationship between stress and cortisol release, such that some individuals exhibit modified reactivity to personally relevant stressors or challenges. In the present study we investigated whether one individual difference—the implicit need for achievement—moderates the effect of motive-relevant challenge on salivary cortisol. Participants’ salivary cortisol and felt affect were measured before and after engagement in an achievement task. In the positive- and no-feedback conditions, individuals high in implicit achievement motivation demonstrated increased cortisol response to the task, whereas in the negative feedback condition, individuals high in implicit achievement motivation demonstrated a dampened cortisol response. Furthermore, changes in cortisol were accompanied by changes in felt affect in the same direction, specifically hedonic tone. These results suggest that the HPA axis also responds to non-social-evaluative challenge in a personality-contingent manner.

Item ID: 53747
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1573-6644
Keywords: need for achievement, implicit motives, cortisol, stress, HPA axis, picture story exercise
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© The Author(s) 2014 Open Access. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and the source are credited.

Date Deposited: 06 Jun 2018 03:56
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170109 Personality, Abilities and Assessment @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences @ 100%
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