Social Cognitive Theory of Self-Regulation. Bandura. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 1991.

<Useful link>

  1. Self-regulation has 3 major sources:
    1. Monitoring behavior, and the results
    2. Judgement of behavior relative personal standards and environment
    3. “affective self-reaction” self-reward or punishment based on outcomes of behavior
  2. Self-regulation is also related to personal agency
  3. <Just based on the language this guy uses this paper is dubious.  Redolent of snowing that philosophers use.>
  4. <Some points here are obvious, but I will try to note them briefly anyway>
  5. In order to do planning we must be able to do symbolic manipulation
  6. Planning is not only a factor of external environment – self reflection allows us to control our behavior, and we have to understand that our actions are meaningful.  This comes from self-monitoring
  7. If cause and effect are close in time, understanding implications through self-monitoring is simpler
  8. RL idea – actions with good outcomes are reinforced and actions with bad outcomes are suppressed
  9. Distinguishes between self-monitoring and self-observation, but its not clear to me what the distinction is.
  10. “Moreover, people differ in their self-monitoring orientations in the extent to which they guide their actions in terms of personal standards or social standards of behavior (Snyder, 1987).  Those who have a firm sense of identity and are strongly oriented toward fulfilling their personal standards display a high level of self-directedness.  Those who have a firm sense of identity and are strongly oriented toward fulfilling their personal standards display a high level of self-directedness.  Those who are not much committed to personal standards adopt a pragmatic orientation, tailoring their behavior to fit whatever the situation seems to call for.  They become adept at reading social cues, remembering those that have predictive value and varying their self-presentation accordingly.”
  11. We develop personal standards partially based on social feedback, also we often judge our performance on objectively scored tasks relative to others
  12. “In everyday life, people imbue remarkably varied activities, many seemingly trivial in character, with high evaluative significance as when they invest their self-esteem in how far they can toss a shot-put ball.”
  13. People are less satisfied with accomplishments when the results are partially the result of the actions of others.  Likewise they may be upset if something happens that is bad and their fault, but if not their fault the feeling of regret is reduced
  14. People motivate themselves by providing self-incentives – exercising and then having some ice cream.  Results have shown that self-incentivising is important for regulating behavior, especially in unstructured environments
  15. <Ok now we are getting to more useful stuff>
  16. Functioning of Self-regulatory Systems
  17. Self-efficacy system. Belief in efficacy has a huge impact in how/what decisions are made: “People’s beliefs in their efficacy influence the choices they make, their aspirations, how much effort they mobilize in a given endeavor, how long they persevere in the face of difficulties and setbacks, whether their thought patterns are self-hindering or self-aiding, the amount of stress they experience in coping with taxing environmental demands, and their vulnerability to depression.”
  18. Self-efficacy also ifluences how we attribute success/failure.  People with high belief of self-efficacy will attribute good outcomes to themselves and bad to external causes and vice versa
  19. We tend to enjoy tasks at which we deem ourselves efficacious, and derive pleasure from mastering them (becoming even more efficacious)
  20. The negative feedback model
    1. Discuss “the basic regulator in control theory” <like a linear quadratic regulator>
    2. “psychobiologic homeostatic theories”
    3. “cybernetic TOTE model”
    4. Equilibration (sole source of motivation in Piaget’s theory)
  21. The general idea in negative feedback models are that simply try to reduce the disparity between the current state and the goal state
  22. “A regulatory process in which matching a standard begets inertness does not characterize human self-motivation.  Such a feedback control system would produce circular action that leads nowhere.  Nor could people be stirred to action until they receive feedback of a short-coming.”
  23. Some form of feedback is necessary for regulation of motivation, but people self-motivate by taking goals before any feedback occurs.  Furthermore, goal-setting allows one to set a basis by which regulation can later take place. So this negative feedback doesn’t explain high-level planning well, but perhaps its ok for low-level: “… anticipative or proactive control operates as the primary system in the mobilization of motivation and reactive feedback specifies the further adjustments in effort <why only effort> needed to accomplish desired goals.”
  24. “Human self-motivation relies on both discrepancy production and discrepancy reduction.” (must have both feedback and goals)
  25. feedbackgoals
  26. Hierarchical Structure of Goal Systems
  27. “… proximal goals are not simply subordinate servitors of valued loftier ones as commonly depicted in machinelike hierarchical control systems.  Through engagement of the self-system, subgoals invest activities with personal significance.”  Indeed, sometimes, the motivation to performance of subgoals can override progress toward the actual goal.
  28. Aspirational standards: the standard you set for yourself determines the level you accept when satisficing
  29. <Ok, stopping here, think its enough>

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