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Date of Graduation
Master of Arts (MA)
Department of Graduate Psychology
Sara J. Finney
Priming examinees with questions about intended effort prior to testing has been shown to significantly increase examinee expended effort via self-reported effort and response-time effort. However, this question-behavior effect seems to wear off later in a testing session, specifically when a test is given second in the session. I examined whether administering a second “dose” of the question-behavior effect could combat the decrease in examinee effort later in a testing session. To evaluate whether “double dosing” could increase examinee effort later in a testing session, I randomly assigned examinees to one of three question conditions prior to completing two low-stakes tests: answering three questions about intended effort directly before the first test in a session, answering three questions about intended effort directly before each test in a session, and answering no priming questions (control). Administering a second dose of questions directly before the second test in a session significantly increased examinee effort via response-time effort and self-reported effort for the more difficult test. This simple administration of multiple sets of questions throughout a testing session appears to combat issues with low effort on difficult tests that are administered later in a testing session.
McFadden, Mara, "Double dosing: Investigating the utility of multiple priming questions on test-taking motivation" (2023). Masters Theses, 2020-current. 237.