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Two studies are described in which level of self-preoccupation (SP) is shown to be related to how feedback is perceived. Based on past research, it was hypothesized that high SP subjects would perceive negative feedback as more negative and positive feedback as more positive than low SP per sons. In one study subjects were exposed to an impossible discrimination task in which they received bogus feedback. High SP persons negatively distorted all feedback more than medium or low SP persons. The second study involved subjects imagining they had received either positive or negative feedback from a same sex person after they had interacted with the person for one hour. Each subject received both a positive and negative evaluation, balanced for order effects. Results showed that all subjects who received negative feedback first showed higher evaluation to both positive and negative feedback. There was a tendency for high SP persons who received negative feedback first to offer the most positive evaluations when given the positive feedback. Results are discussed in terms of feedback perception and focus of attention.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 1982

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