Changes in locus of control :accomplished through the use of the placebo and the expectancy factors



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The objective of this study is to determine if audio placebo feedback (in place of actual alpha-feedback) and/or audio placebo feedback plus experimenter injected expectancy and/or the expectancy factor alone would differentially change locus of control orientation.
Student volunteers were pretested with Levenson's Locus of Control Scale and the first fifty questions from the MMPI scale measuring masculinity-feminity. The pre-test contained seventy-four questions and was organized in such a way that every third question was a selection from Levenson's Scale. Only the items from Levenson's scale were of interest in this study. After the completion of the pretesting, only those persons scoring within two standard deviations of the mean as defined by Levenson on the Adult Scale were selected to participate. Of those, there were several drop-outs and deletions resulting in a population of sixty subjects. Before assignment to the groups, a tape recording was made from an individual who was experienced in the production of alpha. After this taping was completed, the sixty subjects were randomly assigned, without regard to their score, to one of the three groups. After a period of ten to fifteen days, groups one and two were asked to return for placebo alpha training. In addition to the placebo alpha training, group two also received an expectancy statement. After the administration of the treatment (placebo alpha training), the students were asked to complete a posttest. Group three received their expectancy statement (treatment) immediately following the randomization of the groups. Group three was asked to return within ten to fifteen days to take a posttest. The posttest did not differ from the pretest, although if asked, the subjects were told it was similar but contained different items.



Feedback (Psychology), Operant conditioning., Criminal psychology.