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An attitude is a positive, negative, or mixed evaluation of an object that is expressed
at some level of intensity. Our attitude can vary in strength along both positive affect,
and with negative affect, with ambivalence or with apathy and indifference. It usually
implies feelings that are either positive or negative. Social psychologists use the term
attitude differently.
Gordon Allport formulated the following definition: An altitude is a mental and neural
stale of readiness, organized through experience, exerting a directive or dynamic
influence upon the individuals response to ill objects and situations with which it is
Characteristics of Attitudes
Changes with time & situation
Tend to persist unless something is done to change them
They can fall anywhere along a continuum from very
favorable to very unfavorable
They are directed toward some object about which a
person has feelings and beliefs
Related to feelings & beliefs of people
Effects ones behavior positively or negatively
Learned through experiences

Nature of Attitude
Attitude are a complex combination of things we tend to call personality, beliefs, values,
behaviors, and motivations.

An attitude exists in every persons mind. It helps to define our identity, guide our
actions, and influence how we judge people.

Although the feeling and belief components of attitude are internal to a person, we can
view a persons attitude from his or her resulting behavior.

Attitude helps us define how we see situations, as well as define how we behave toward
the situation or object.

Attitude provides us with internal cognitions or beliefs and thoughts about people and

Attitude cause us to behave in a particular way toward an object or person.

The ABC Model of Attitudes
There are three main elements of an attitude:
1.Cognitive component

2.Affective component

3.Behavioural component
Cognitive component
Cognitive component involves the belief or knowledge of the person.
This base knowledge is usually objective and without any emotional

For example, a person might know that McDonalds is a fast food

restaurant that operates in 1,000s of locations throughout the world.
As you can see, this is simply base information/knowledge without
any particular viewpoint in regards to McDonalds.
Affective component
The affective component of an attitude relates to some form of
judgment or positive/negative evaluation of the object, person, task
or brand. A good way to remember this component is from the word
affection but consider that the view can be positive or negative.
Using our McDonalds example again, the same person as above
may consider that McDonalds food is convenient and provides
good value for money. This is the affective component of an
attitude, as it suggests some form of evaluation. Contrast this against
another person who may dislike the taste of McDonalds view and
generally dislike their facilities.
Behavioural component
The third component of an attitude is the behavioural component. As
suggested by the name, this is the persons behavior relative to the
subject of the overall attitude.

Using a McDonalds example yet again, there are some people who
would frequently visit McDonalds, others who go occasionally, and
others who would never go to McDonalds. Obviously the behavioral
component is interrelated to the effective and cognitive aspects of the
persons attitude.
Thank you