Sarah Hassan

Developing Leaders Through Graduate Education

Saint Johns University




Jason Young, Ph.D.

The Influences of Mood and Gender on Decision-Making Processes Involving Risk-Taking Behavior

Numerous research studies have sought to explain decision-making with regards to risk-taking behavior. This study will investigate how different moods affect couplesí decision-making strategies with regard to safer-sex practices. Furthermore, an examination of gender and its affects on the decision making process will be looked at in this study as well. Heterosexual couplesí discussions will be recorded as they review a role-playing script designed to induce one of three mood states; sexually aroused, negative mood and positive mood. The participants will then be asked to discuss what recommendations they would make to a hypothetical couple who are considering engaging in unsafe sex. Participants will then be separated and will discuss their thoughts of the previous role playing process. It is hypothesized that the mood of individuals, as induced by our mood manipulation, will affect the type of decision processing applied, such that those in the negative state mood will be more analytical, while individuals who are in the positive and aroused states will use a more simplistic, heuristic-based form of discussing the problem.