CC BY-NC 3.0 Polska

Inluence of motivation on strength of rubber hand ilussion experience

Piotr Litwin 1,  
Uniwersytet Warszawski
Polska Akademia Nauk
Studia Psychologiczne 2017;55(2):14–25
Publication date: 2017-02-07
Supplementary files
A recent plethora of evidence suggests the direct influence of motivation on perception. Surprisingly, there has not been any scientific reports concerning whether the intrinsic motivation to experience a particular phenomenon can influence the character of that experience. To examine such possibility, an experimental study employing Rubber Hand Illusion (RHI) paradigm was conducted. The strength of the illusion has been assessed using first- (questionnaire) and third-person (skin conductance response in a situation threatening rubber hand) measurement methods. Correlation between self-reported motivation and self-reported strength of the illusion did not reach statistical significance. However, highly motivated participants displayed pattern of skin conductance response characteristic for strong illusion. We conclude that the motivated participants actually experienced the illusion stronger, but simultaneously their expectations concerning the illusion escalated so their subjective reports of the strength of the illusion did not reflect results obtained by SCR. The obtained results support the hypothesis that cognition influences perception.