Paper Type

Master's Thesis


College of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

Master of Arts in General Psychology (MAGP)



NACO controlled Corporate Body

University of North Florida. Department of Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Christopher Leone

Second Advisor

Dr. Michael Toglia

Department Chair

Dr. Michael Toglia

College Dean

Dr. Barbara A. Hetrick


When provided an opportunity for thought, individuals experience a strengthening of their already moderate attitude toward some attitude object. This process was studied in the context of variables – attitudes toward behavior, norms about behavior, and perceived behavioral control – known to predict intentions to engage in health-related behavior. A potential moderator of this process – locus of control beliefs – was also investigated. In this study, 195 participants indicated their attitudes toward eight health-related behaviors. Participants were randomly assigned to either a high or low opportunity for thought during which time they were asked to focus their thoughts on the health behavior getting 8 hours of sleep a night. Participants then responded to 18 items measuring Theory of Planned Behavior constructs and the 18-item Multidimensional Health Locus of Control scale. Although self-generated attitude polarization was not observed in this study, evidence was found which supports previous Theory of Planned Behavior and Multidimensional Health Locus of Control research findings. Study limitations and implications are discussed. Keywords: attitudes, attitude change, health locus of control, theory of planned behavior