Effect of temporal separation between motivation, aggression, and consequences: A developmental study

W. Andrew Collins

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55 Scopus citations


Investigated effects over age of temporally contiguous or temporally separated presentations of motivation for aggression, aggressive action, and consequences for aggression. 206 3rd-, 6th-, and 10th graders served as Ss. A half-hour television drama was edited such that all aggressive behavior was negatively motivated and punished. 4 min. of commercials were then placed either between motivation and aggression and between aggression and consequences (separation) or elsewhere in the program (no separation). Ss saw 1 of these 2 tapes or a nonaggressive control film. Paper-and-pencil measures of probable responses to situations involving interpersonal conflict were taken 18 days before and immediately after seeing the stimulus presentation. 3rd graders in the separation condition increased significantly more in number of aggressive choices than those in the no-separation condition. 6th and 10th graders changed about the same amount in both conditions. For younger Ss, temporal separation apparently obscured the message that aggression was negatively motivated and punished, so that effects of exposure to the aggressive model were unmodified. (19 ref.) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)215-221
Number of pages7
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 1973


  • temporally contiguous vs. temporally separated TV presentation of motivation & aggression & consequences, aggressive behavior, 3rd vs. 6th vs. 10th graders


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