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Does changing behavioural intentions engender behavior change?

Webb, Thomas L. and Sheeran, Paschal (2006) Does changing behavioural intentions engender behavior change? Psychological Bulletin, 132 (2). pp. 249-268. ISSN 0033-2909


Numerous theories in social and health psychology assume that intentions cause behaviors. However, most tests of the intention-behavior relation involve correlational studies that preclude causal inferences. In order to determine whether changes in behavioral intention engender behavior change, participants should be assigned randomly to a treatment that significantly increases the strength of respective intentions relative to a control condition, and differences in subsequent behavior should be compared. The present research obtained 47 experimental tests of intention-behavior relations that satisfied these criteria. Meta-analysis showed that a medium-to-large change in intention (d = 0.66) leads to a small-to-medium change in behavior (d = 0.36). The review also identified several conceptual factors, methodological features, and intervention characteristics that moderate intention-behavior consistency.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: intention, behavior change, intervention, meta-analysis
Institution: The University of Sheffield
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Science (Sheffield) > Department of Psychology (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Repository Officer
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2006
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2014 01:20
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/0033-2909.132.2.249
Status: Published
Publisher: American Psychological Association
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1037/0033-2909.132.2.249
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/1580

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