Components of Attitude

Components of Attitude

Attitude is way of thinking or feeling about something that determines our behaviour. It Provide a framework for responding to particular situation and it can be positive or negative.

Components of Attitude

  • Affective (feel)
  • Behavioural (behave)
  • Cognitive (thought)

Affective component is the emotional or feeling segment of an attitude. It is related to the statement which affects another person. It deals with feelings or emotions that are brought to the surface about something, such as fear or hate. Using the above example, someone might have the attitude that they love all babies because they are cute or that they hate smoking because it is harmful to health.

Behavior component of an attitude consists of a person’s tendencies to behave’in a particular way toward an object. It refers to that part of attitude which reflects the intention of a person in short run or long run.Using the above example, the behavioral attitude maybe- ‘I cannot wait to kiss the baby’, or ‘we better keep those smokers out of the library, etc.

The cognitive component of attitudes refers to the beliefs, thoughts, and attributes that we would associate with an object. It is the opinion or belief segment of an attitude. It refers that part of attitude which is related in general knowledge of a person.Typically these come to light in generalities or stereotypes, such as ‘all babies are cute’, ‘smoking is harmful to health’ etc.


Relation of Attitude with Behaviour

  • Attitude is internal while behaviour is external
  • Attitude is what we think and behaviour is what we do
  • Attitude affects behaviour. But it is only one the factors. Other being the external environment
  • The stronger the attitude, the more it will affect ones behaviour
  • A person may lean more towards his intrinsic attitude while making decisions or rely on push-pulls of the outer environment for the same
  • For a public servant, his attitude should be flexible so that he can strike a balance between his internal values and the external pressures. (note – congruence is not compromise)


Moral Attitude

  • Not all attitudes may have a moral component
  • For eg – dislike for snakes as an attitude has nothing to do with morality, but say a dislike for liars has an element of morality involved – which guides one to seek truthfulness
  • Certain examples of moral attitudes:
    • Goodness
    • Reverence
    • Faithfulness
    • Tolerance

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