Date of Award




Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Department of Psychology


Social/Personality Psychology

Content Description

1 online resource (ii, 42 pages)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Dr. Mark Muraven

Committee Members

Dr. Ronald Friedman


Awareness, Depletion, Self-control, Mindfulness (Psychology)

Subject Categories

Social Psychology


The current study examined whether awareness of ego depletion had an effect on subsequent tasks requiring self-control. It is possible, that with awareness of depletion, one may be able to make corrections in their behavior to counteract the effects of reduced self-control. The primary question this research set out to answer was whether awareness of depletion would significantly increase or decrease self-control performance. Participants underwent a depletion manipulation to diminish their self-control strength. Next the participants completed a false feedback assessment of self-control, ostensibly designed to measure their level of self-control strength. Participants then received feedback as to whether they were in a depleted or enhanced state. A series of manipulation checks were administered to ensure that the participants believed the feedback and the deception was effective. As a final measure of self-control, participants’ time on task was recorded for completion of a word search puzzle. In Study 1, time to completion and word count were calculated as a measure of persistence and choice of task difficulty (e.g., intermediate, advanced) was evaluated to determine participants’ level of depletion. In Study 2 self-control was measured by recording choice of task difficulty and time to completion. It was posited that awareness of depletion would have a positive effect on self-control performance by acting as motivation for improvement. There were no significant effects revealed in either Study 1 or Study 2. Although results appear to be in the direction predicted, the present hypothesis was not supported by statistical significance.