Joe Ammar

Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Barber, Larissa K.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of Psychology


Social psychology


The action control literature suggests that individual differences in state orientation predict how people respond to goal frustration. Research suggests that state orientation is associated with misguided persistence. Though action control theorists suggest state-orientation can be adaptive under some circumstances (Koole, Kuhl, Jostmann, & Vohs, 2005), there is a lack of research exploring the relationship between state-orientation and persistence in different contexts. The current project bridges research in action control and self-regulation to investigate variables that may influence the relationship between state orientation and persistence. Based on theories of self-regulation and resource allocation, I explored the relationship between state orientation and persistence in single-goal and multiple-goal conditions in terms of self-regulation failure. Based on the personality systems interaction theory, I explored whether the relationship between state orientation and persistence differs based on attainability. I also investigated a potential three-way interaction between state orientation, goal attainability, and resource allocation in predicting persistence outcomes. I found evidence that need for resource allocation was associated with persistence (beta = -.19, p = .010). However, I did not find support for my other hypotheses. The results from this study warrant further exploration into need for resource allocation in predicting persistence outcomes.


Advisors: Larissa K. Barber.||Committee members: Amanda M. Durik; John J. Skowronski.||Includes bibliographical references.||Includes illustrations.


96 pages




Northern Illinois University

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