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Perceived Control and Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motivation for Oral Self-Care: A Full Factorial Experimental Test of Theory-Based Persuasive Messages

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Paul Gellert, Dr Keegan Knittle, Professor Falko Sniehotta


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Correlational evidence suggests that perceived control (PC) and intrinsic motivation (IM), key constructs in social cognitive and self-determination theories, may interact to reinforce behavior change.This proof-of-principle study examines the independent and synergistic effects of interventions to increase PC and IM upon dental flossing frequency.University students (n = 185) were randomized in a 2 x 2 full factorial design to receive two computer-based interventions: one to either increase or decrease PC and another to increase either IM or extrinsic motivation. These constructs were measured immediately post-intervention; flossing behavior was measured 1 week later.The interventions to increase PC and PC/IM had main and interaction effects on flossing, respectively. The PC/IM interaction effect was mediated by increases in PC and IM.Combining interventions to increase PC and IM seems to be a promising avenue of research, which has implications for both theory and intervention development.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Staunton L, Gellert P, Knittle K, Sniehotta FF

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Annals of Behavioral Medicine

Year: 2015

Volume: 49

Issue: 2

Pages: 258-268

Print publication date: 01/04/2015

Online publication date: 23/09/2014

Acceptance date: 01/01/1900

ISSN (print): 0883-6612

ISSN (electronic): 1532-4796

Publisher: Springer


DOI: 10.1007/s12160-014-9655-2


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Funder referenceFunder name
MR/K02325X/1Medical Research Council