Motivation and Emotion

, Volume 37, Issue 2, pp 308–322 | Cite as

Want information? How mood and performance perceptions alter the perceived value of information and influence information-seeking behaviors

  • Karen Gasper
  • Matthew J. Zawadzki
Original Paper


Currently, it is not well understood when positive and negative moods would encourage and discourage the process of identifying and seeking out valuable information. Building upon the mood-as-a-resource hypothesis and the mood-behavior-model, this project reconciles mixed findings by investigating and finding support for the hypothesis that positive moods encourage seeking instrumental information when performance is perceived to be weak; whereas negative moods encourage it when performance is perceived to be strong. These effects are due to mood influencing the perceived value (i.e. instrumentality) of information and cannot be explained by arguing that mood altered the affective costs/benefits associated with the information. Overall, these results indicate that positive moods may help individuals acquire information to resolve an existing problem, whereas negative moods may help individuals acquire information when there is no apparent problem.


Information seeking Mood Mood-as-a-resource Mood-behavior-model 



We wish to thank Halle Belosh, Ian Brodie, Kaitlyn Dalsey, Jolene Esposito, Ali Galindo, Lauren Marshall, Erin Smith, Lauren Testa, and Alex Zimpfer for their assistance in collecting the data.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyThe Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

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