Aggression & Immoral Behaviour
Terms in this set (38)
What are the characteristics Cox (2002) uses to define aggression?
- Intent to harm - Soul purpose must be to harm the person
- Living target - The behaviour must be targeted at a person
- Will be successful - The aggression is successful i.e. person is physically hurt or injured
Provide an example from sport of what you would classify as not aggressive and aggressive
Not aggressive: Tennis player got frustrated after he missed his shot and hit his racket against his head, drawing blood. Not classed as aggression because he was not targeting a living person and did not intend to harm anyone else, just himself
Aggressive: Betuzzi's ice hockey incident would be classed as aggressive behaviour as he purposely went out with the intention to harm another player and was successful
Describe the difference between hostile and instrumental aggression
To harm for the sake of harm vs. to harm to get ahead in the game
Hostile Aggression: Aggression that is not controlled, you go out with the intent to harm and not worry about the consequences, your goal is to inflict harm and see that person suffer (i.e. aggression that is always accompanied by anger, your angry and frustrated so you lash out)
Instrumental Aggression: Aggression that is carried out to receive an external reward or goal with the aim to be aggressive and hurt someone to receive victory for your team or for yourself
Why does the ISSP view aggression as unacceptable within sport?
Because any behaviour executed with an intent to harm or injure another individual, whether its within the sporting context or not, constitutes an immoral act - its unsportsmanlike and not a moral act so should not be acceptable within sport
What is Kerr's opinion on legitimate aggression (make reference to sanctioned vs. unsanctioned aggression)
Kerr believes that aggression is acceptable in sport if it is sanctioned aggression (legal and within the rules of sport), but if it is unsanctioned aggression (illegal and not within the rules of the sport) it is unacceptable. So basically he believes that its okay to go out with the intention to injure and hurt someone as long as it is within the boundaries of the rules of the sport.
What is assertive behaviour and how does it differ from aggressive behaviour?
- Legitimate physical and verbal force, the intention to assert physicality and effort without harm. You assert physicality and effort to win/to do well in your sport (i.e. legal and acceptable use of physicality to impose your will on a game)
It differs from aggressive behaviour because you do not go out with the intent to harm someone, you are just asserting your physical dominance (high intensity, physicality, effort etc.) to win and do well in your sport. Common in contact sports such as rugby
What is your opinion, is there such a thing as legitimate aggression in sport?
I believe that there is legal aggression in sport, especially contact sports such as rugby where assertive behaviour is constantly applied as rugby is all about asserting your physical dominance to win the game, however the players do not do it to hurt their opponents, they do it to win the game e.g. Kieran Reid states "I just told him no hard feelings mate, its a contact sport. There was a bit of blood but thats rugby mate" - highlighting the fact that rugby players do assert acts of aggression, not intentionally but its just the nature of the game.
Compare sanctioned and legitimate vs unsanctioned and illegal behaviours
To harm within the rules of the game vs. to harm outside the rules of the game
Why does ambiguity occur in defining behaviour as aggressive or assertive?
Because only the athlete knows the reason behind their aggressive behaviour therefore the judgement of the official/ref is ambiguous because there is uncertainty to whether the act was aggressive or assertive
Discuss the role of intention and how that affects the classification of behaviour as aggressive or assertive
Intention is whether the aggressive act was intentional or not (i.e. the person committing the act intended to go out and physically harm the person or whether it was an accident and there was no intent to harm, it was just an unfortunate outcome of the player asserting their physicality and effort)
- Therefore if you purposely intend to harm someone your behaviour would be classified as aggressive but if you unintentionally harmed someone (it was an accident) as a result of asserting your physicality it would be classified as assertive behaviour.
With reference to Kirker et al. (2000), what personal and environmental factors influence whether or not someone will be aggressive?
- Players history between opponents
- You're motivation i.e. whether you have task/ego, or autonomous/controlled motivation
- Parents - whether you have been bought up in a way that has taught you aggressive behaviour is okay or whether they encourage you to be aggressive or not
- Your personality - whether you are the type of person that lashes out easily or whether you are good at brushing it off & moving on
- Whether your playing at home or away (more likely to be aggressive when playing away as you don't have anything to lose)
- The referee - if they keep making bad calls
- The coach - if they're encouraging an aggressive climate or not
- The crowd - if they're encouraging you to be aggressive by cheering when you put a big hit on
- The history with the opposing team - if you've played them lots previously you're more likely to be aggressive
Why is instrumental aggression more prevalent that hostile aggression?
Because most players don't want to harm anyone, they just want to win and do well in their sport, particularly when they move up in the ranks (i.e. from junior to regional to national) as their sport becomes more important to them and therefore they are under more cognitive control
Describe the revised frustration aggression theory and explain how it has been used to explain the occurrence of aggressive behaviour
- Frustration leads to readiness for aggression through increased anger
- Certain stimuli must be present (such as team atmosphere that encourages aggressive behaviour or the ref making a bad call)
It explains the occurrence of aggressive behaviour in terms of a vicious cycle... A certain stimuli is present (e.g. ref makes bad call) which causes you to become frustrated and then become aggressive which causes you to get a penalty against you as a consequence of that aggressive behaviour which then leads to you getting more frustrated and more aggressive and so on.
Describe the difference between dysfunctional and instrumental anger as described by Robazza et al. (2007). How is anger best expressed in a sport situation?
Dysfunctional anger is when you are not in control and you react (lash out) without thinking causing hostile acts of aggression whereas instrumental is when you are in control and you take that anger into legitimate means for you to get ahead in the game (i.e. behaviour that is more organised towards the task).
Dysfunctional anger may lead the player to devote their attention away from the task to the player to evert harm - so this anger goes beyond hostile aggression and into the realms of violence.
Anger is best expressed as instrumental, it is better to be in control of your anger.
Describe the social learning theory and explain how it has been used to explain the occurrence of aggressive behaviour
- Aggression is a function of LEARNING
- We learn that it is acceptable of unacceptable to show aggression
- Modelling and reinforcement
--> Watching others (if we watch others be aggressive then it makes us think its okay to be aggressive
--> Rewards gained (we learn that it is acceptable to be aggressive because of the rewards that can be gained such as winning)
It explains the occurrence of aggressive behaviour in terms of the result of your aggressive behaviour e.g. if you are aggressive and have a successful performance (i.e. you win) then that aggressive behaviour is reinforced and increases your likelihood of being aggressive because you know it results in success
Describe the aim, methods and results of the study conducted by Sheldon & Aimar (2001). What can you conclude from this study?
Aim: To find out whether SLT or FAT explains the link between aggression and performance
Method: 11 mens professional ice hockey games videotaped. Measured successful/unsuccessful performances and aggressive behaviour
- When aggression occurred before a performance incident there was a significant relationship between performance and success - supports SLT because the aggressive behaviour resulted in a successful outcome
- When aggression followed a performance incident: No relationship between failure and aggression - this did not support the FAT
- Number of illegal behaviours go unpenalised - a positive reinforcement for those athletes to keep performing those aggressive behaviours because they weren't penalised for them
Conclusion: Hockey performance seems to benefit from aggression
Describe the purpose, methods and results of the study conducted by Gee & Leith (2007). What can you conclude from this study?
- Do North American and European players differ in their use of aggressive behaviour and does aggression influence performance?
- Europeans less aggressive than N. Americans
- Occurred more when score was tight, in offensive players and more experienced
--> Differences in aggressive behaviour did not result in performance differences
- Supports the SLT idea that players LEARN to be aggressive
- Aggression was not beneficial for performance
Which theory has the most potential to explain the occurrence of aggressive behaviour?
Social learning theory
Describe the potential differences that may exist explaining the causes of hostile and instrumental aggression and violence
Hostile is a reaction to the frustration which generally results in violence whereas instrumental is aggression to get ahead in the game and is not usually violent because it is controlled
Does aggression have a significant impact on performance?
Sheldon & Aimar study says yes
Gee & Leith study says no
Silva (1980) - says aggression inhibits performance due to:
- Attentional shift - your attention and energy has been shifted to that retaliation, so not focusing your attention on what you should be (i.e. the task)
- Heightened arousal - lead you to have a catastrophe
What effect does anti-social behaviour in the form of verbal aggression given by a teammate have on the recipient?
- In football - it causes the teammate to get angry and decrease their effort
- In basketball - it causes the teammate to get angry and decrease their effort but also has direct effect on the teams performance and causes it to decrease
Based on the theories, what strategies would you suggest could be used to reduce the incidence of aggression within sport?
Power of reinforcements
- More severe penalties for aggressive behaviours
- Rewards for positive behaviours
- Frustration management
- Coping skills
(e.g. work out what causes you to get aggressive and learn relaxation/calming techniques of how deal with it)
- Parents, peers, coaches, spectators, elite athletes
Describe what sportspersonship is and provide recent examples of behaviours within sport that would be considered "unsportspersonlike".
Sportspersonship is respect for social conventions, rules, officials, opponents, fair play etc while unsportspersonship is actions which contravene the spirit of the contest, by physiologically unsettling opponents - these can range from small (not shaking hands) to large (outright aggression & violence) e.g. Lance Armstrong taking EPO is unsportsmanlike behaviour
Define moral reasoning and what influences it?
- Our standards of what is right and wrong
- Extent to which you believe behaviours that contravene sportspersonship are acceptable
Influenced by personal and social factors e.g. coach, team beliefs
Define moral atmosphere
Shared understanding of whats appropriate behaviour within the team e.g. if you're in a team that encourages aggressive behaviour you're more likely to be aggressive - moral atmosphere comes from social norms
What is the relationship between moral reasoning and sportspersonlike behaviors?
High levels of morality leads to greater pro-social and less anti-social sportspersonlike behaviours e.g. an athlete with high levels of morality is more likely to shake hands after a loss than an athlete with low levels of morality
What is the role of guilt in the moral reasoning process?
Behaviours which violate our moral standards result in feelings of guilt e.g. when an athlete goes against their morals they experience huge amounts of guilt because they know they shouldn't be doing it
Define moral disengagement
The psychological and behavioural processes that athletes use to justify their immoral behaviour in order to reduce their guilt when they're done something that they know was wrong (immoral)
What are the 4 mechanisms (psycho-social processes) of moral disengagement?
1. Reclassifying the behaviour as respectable
- It achieved an important goal e.g. protecting a teammate
- Re-phrasing to make act sound harmless e.g. bent the rules
- Comparing the act with worse ones e.g. I didn't punch him
2. Reducing personal accountability for the behaviour
- Act resulted from pressure from others e.g. coach told me to
- Diffusion of responsibility e.g. as a team we decided to do it, everyone else is doing it
3. Distortion of the consequences of behaviour
- Minimise the harm caused e.g. he wasn't hurt
- Dismiss the seriousness of the health threat e.g. the side effects are exaggerated
4. Attribution of blame
- Dehumanising the opponent e.g. he is just the enemy - rather than being an actual person or opponent
- Forced response to provocation e.g. she hit me first - blame lies within the first person
What is the relationship between moral disengagement and hostile & instrumental aggression according to Traclet et al. (2015)?
- Strong effect of moral disengagement on legitimising hostile aggression
- Instrumental aggression integrated into sport norms so no need for moral disengagement
What is the role of anticipated regret in influencing doping behaviours?
- Social norms around doping (moral atmosphere of team) influence intentions to dope particularly when anticipated regret is low (i.e. low anticipated regret means you are much more likely to dope because you won't regret it if you do)
Why are researchers interested in understanding the relationship between motivation and immoral/antisocial behaviours?
Because if researchers can understand the reasons WHY someone plays sport then that might explain HOW they play it e.g. if you're more ego-orientated or under controlled motivation then you're more likely to engage in anti-social sportspersonlike behaviours
What is the relationship between goal orientation and immoral/aggressive/unsportspersonship behaviours? What is the explanation for the relationship between the ego orientation and sportspersonship behaviours?
Role of goal orientation: The type of goal orientations that you have are likely to influence the behaviour you will carry out
If your goal is ego-orientated (e.g. when winning is everything) you are much more likely to be aggressive, have poor sportspersonship and adopt dishonest means to achieve a goal whereas if your goal is task-orientated you are more likely to have higher moral functioning, prosocial attitudes and sportspersonship behaviours.
Referring to the methods and results if Ntoumanis et al., 2012), what is the relationship between motivational climate and anti/pro-social behaviours?
If your peers and coach provide a performance/ego motivational climate you are more likely to form anti-social attitudes such as cheating and lack of gamespersonship whereas if your peers and coach provide a task motivational climate you are more likely to form pro-social attitudes such as commitment and respect for conventions
What did Hodge & Lonsdale (2011) find were the relationships between autonomous and controlled motivation, moral disengagement and pro/anti-social behaviours?
That autonomous supportive coaching lead to pro-social behaviours towards teammates and opponents and controlled motivation lead to moral disengagement which lead to anti-social behaviours toward teammates and opponents
What is the explanation for why autonomous and controlled motivation have these relationships with anti/pro social behaviours?
Because autonomous motivation is intrinsic so enjoyment comes from choice-fully acting in line with goals and values, playing sport because they love it therefore you are more likely to show pro-social behaviours
Controlled motivation is focused on outcome and extrinsic rewards to satisfy external pressure so more likely to act anti-socially in order to secure the 'win'.
Referring to Hodge et al. (2013) what are the relationships between autonomous/controlled motivation, moral disengagement and attitudes towards taking drugs?
Athletes who had a controlling coach were more likely to have controlled motivation which lead to moral disengagement to attitudes towards drugs to susceptibility to take drugs as well as having a direct effect on being more likely to take drugs
From what you know about moral disengagement and motivation, what strategies would you use to reduce the incidence of anti-social/immoral behaviours in sport?
- Provide an autonomy supportive motivational task performance climate
- Encourage athletes to set task orientated goals rather than ego-orientated goals
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