Date of Award

6-1991

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Alyce Dickinson

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access

Abstract

Although many studies have shown that performance-contingent rewards increase performance quantity, few have examined whether quality contingent rewards increase quality. One objective of the present study was to determine whether quality contingent rewards would improve quality.

A second, independent objective was to determine whether extrinsic quality contingent rewards would decrease a person's intrinsic interest in and quality performance of a task following termination of those rewards. To date, no other studies have examined the effects of quality contingent rewards on intrinsic interest and quality performance.

The results indicated that quality performance-contingent rewards do improve quality. Quality contingent rewards increased quality for all of the nine subjects. However, there were mixed results with respect to the effects of quality contingent rewards on intrinsic interest and quality performance following reward termination. This suggests that the reinforcing control of the intrinsic rewards was neither completely weakened nor strengthened by the extrinsic rewards.

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