Self-reported reasons: A test and application of reasons theory on occupational behavior

James D. Westaby, Martin Fishbein, Robert Aherin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There has been considerable research assessing people's self-reported reasons for engaging in a particular behavior. However, very little theory underlies many of these assessments. A basic reasons theory approach was presented that formally conditions reason type (i.e., reasons for vs. reasons against performing a behavior) on behavioral frequency-intention. Reasons theory was compared to a standard reasons approach that does not formally condition reasons. Results from a random sample of chemical applicators revealed that reasons theory was able to explain variance in behavior over and above that explained by the standard reasons approach. Moreover, the applied results from reasons theory appeared to have more face validity than the standard reasons approach. Psychological mechanisms underlying reasons theory are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)483-494
Number of pages12
JournalBasic and Applied Social Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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