Self-affirmation improves music performance among performers high on the impulsivity dimension of sensation seeking

Churchill, Sue, Jessop, Donna C, Goodwin, Sophie, Ritchie, Laura and Harris, Peter R (2018) Self-affirmation improves music performance among performers high on the impulsivity dimension of sensation seeking. Psychology of Music, 46 (2). pp. 292-302. ISSN 0305-7356

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Abstract

In the light of evidence that self-affirmation can mitigate the negative effects of stress on outcomes, this study tested whether a self-affirmation manipulation could improve undergraduate students’ achievement in a formal musical performance examination. The study also investigated the association between impulsivity and music performance and explored whether impulsivity moderated any impact of self-affirmation on exam performance. Methods: At baseline, participants provided demographic information and completed the UPPS-P Impulsive Behaviour Scale (short-form), which assesses five dimensions of impulsivity (negative and positive urgency, lack of premeditation, lack of perseverance, and sensation seeking). In the subsequent 14 days, participants (N = 65) completed either a self-affirmation manipulation or a control task, before reading a message about the impact of practice on music performance. Music performance was formally assessed 14 days later. Findings: Sensation seeking was the only dimension of impulsivity associated with exam performance, with participants high in sensation seeking receiving lower grades. Critically, self-affirmation promoted better music performance among those high in sensation seeking. Discussion: Self-affirmation may provide a useful intervention to augment the performance of musicians who would otherwise perform worse than their counterparts under formal evaluative circumstances, such as those high in sensation seeking.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Self-affirmation; Music Performance, Impulsivity, Sensation-Seeking
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Depositing User: Ellena Adams
Date Deposited: 25 Jan 2018 13:04
Last Modified: 26 Feb 2018 12:45
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/73052

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