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1. the internal state resulting from experience with predictable relationships between stimuli or between responses and stimuli. This basic meaning becomes slightly more specific in some fields. For example, in cognitive psychology, it refers to an attitude or mental set that determines the way in which a person approaches a situation, and in motivation theory, it refers to an individual’s belief that his or her actions can produce a particular outcome (e.g., attainment of a goal).

2. see expectation. —expectant adj.

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Psychology term of the day

February 27th 2024