Identifier

etd-04062014-213507

Degree

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Psychology

Document Type

Thesis

Abstract

Obesity rates have continued to increase over the past decade with a current estimate of 35.7% of adults who are obese in the United States. Several behavioral weight loss programs are available to individuals, which typically lead to a 10% decrease in body weight; however, most individuals begin gaining weight after six months. Long-term weight maintenance interventions may be needed to help individuals keep the weight off and more cost-effective, and tailored weight-loss treatments need to be available. Motivation may play an important role in long-term weight maintenance. Self-determination theory (SDT; Deci & Ryan, 1995) states that it is important to distinguish between autonomous and controlled motivation when attempting long-term maintenance of behavior change. Motivational Interviewing (MI; Rollnick & Miller, 1995) is a directive, client-centered counseling style for eliciting behavior change by helping clients explore and resolve ambivalence and is seen as an autonomy-supportive atmosphere. The MI environment has been shown to support SDT and includes the components needed to increase integrated motivation for behavior change. The current study utilized a brief MI intervention on motivation for weight loss to determine changes in autonomy and competence ratings in individuals (N = 65). Participants were randomly assigned to either the MI intervention group or a control group. They were assessed at baseline and 4-week follow-up for autonomy and competence ratings. There were no significant differences in autonomy or competence ratings between the two groups from baseline to 4-week follow-up. Implications of these findings are discussed.

Date

2014

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Matson, Johnny

Included in

Psychology Commons

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