Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Laura Johnson

Reader 2

Stacey Wood

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Many studies have confirmed that when a speaker expresses enthusiasm about a subject, the person listening is more intrinsically motivated to continue pursuing that subject. However, only a small amount of research has studied the effects that faking (inauthentic) enthusiasm has on the person speaking. This study bridges that gap by exploring the effects of faking enthusiasm on intrinsic motivation and memory. In this experiment, participants read three short stories out loud: one angrily, one enthusiastically, and one monotone. They took Intrinsic Motivation and Deep Acting surveys after each reading, and had a surprise memory test five minutes after reading the last short story. Results showed that emotion does not affect memory, although a floor effect cannot be ruled out, and that intrinsic motivation is higher for short stories read in angry and excited voices in comparison to a monotone voice.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.