Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Belief, philosophy: attitude of considering a sentence to be true. Unlike religious faith belief is linked to the assessment of probabilities. See also belief, religious belief, propositional attitudes, intensions, probability, belief degrees.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Appraisal Theory on Beliefs - Dictionary of Arguments

Corr I 63
Beliefs/appraisal theory/Reisenzein/Weber: There is (…) evidence that appraisal-related, general beliefs influence emotional reactions to events. The two general beliefs that have been most extensively researched in this regard are (a) optimism (versus pessimism), defined as a generalized expectancy for positive (versus negative) outcomes (Scheier, Carver and Bridges 2001)(1); and (b) general self-efficacy, defined as a person’s generalized belief in her ability to reach her goals and to master difficult or stressful situations (Bandura 1997(2); Schwarzer and Jerusalem 1995(3)).
General self-efficacy has been found, for example, to be associated with lower state anxiety during a stressful cognitive task (Endler, Speer, Johnson and Flett 2001)(4) and lower levels of depression and anxiety in medical patients (e.g., Luszczynska, Gutiérrez-Doña and Schwarzer 2005)(5). These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that optimism and general self-efficacy affect emotional states at least partly by influencing the appraisals of events; it should be noted, however, that direct evidence for this mediating path is so far scarce (e.g., Kaiser, Major and McCoy 2004(6); Schwarzer and Jerusalem 1999)(7).

1. Scheier, M. F., Carver, C. S. and Bridges, M. W. 2001. Optimism, pessimism, and psychological well-being, in E. C. Chang (ed.), Optimism and pessimism: implications for theory, research, and practice, pp. 189–216. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association
2. Bandura, A. 1997. Self-efficacy: the exercise of control. New York: Freeman
3. Schwarzer, R. and Jerusalem, M. 1995. Generalized Self-Efficacy Scale, in J. Weinman, S. Wright and M. Johnston (eds.), Measures in health psychology: a user’s portfolio. Causal and control beliefs, pp. 35–7. Windsor: NFER-Nelson
4. Endler, N. S., Speer, R. L., Johnson, J. M. and Flett, G. L. 2001. General self-efficacy and control in relation to anxiety and cognitive performance, Current Psychology: Developmental, Learning, Personality, Social 20: 36–52
5. Luszczynska, A., Gutiérrez-Doña, B. and Schwarzer, R. 2005. General self-efficacy in various domains of human functioning: evidence from five countries, International Journal of Psychology 40: 80–9
6. Kaiser, C. R., Major, B. and McCoy, S. K. 2004. Expectations about the future and the emotional consequences of perceiving prejudice, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 30: 173–84
7. Schwarzer, R., and Jerusalem, M. 1999. Skalen zur Erfassung von Lehrer- und Schülermerkmalen [Scales for the assessment of teacher and student characteristics]. Berlin: Freie Universität Berlin

Rainer Reisenzein & Hannelore Weber, “Personality and emotion”, in: Corr, Ph. J. & Matthews, G. (eds.) 2009. The Cambridge Handbook of Personality Psychology. New York: Cambridge University Press

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Appraisal Theory
Corr I
Philip J. Corr
Gerald Matthews
The Cambridge Handbook of Personality Psychology New York 2009

Corr II
Philip J. Corr (Ed.)
Personality and Individual Differences - Revisiting the classical studies Singapore, Washington DC, Melbourne 2018

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