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Theories & Approaches
Key Concepts of Theory of Reasoned Action
The TRA is based on eight key concepts, as described in Montaño et al.3 (from which the following table is adapted):
|Behavior||A specific behavior defined by four components: an action (e.g., using condoms), a target (e.g., commercial sex workers), a context (at home with long-term partners), and time (always)|
|Behavioral Intention||Perceived likelihood of performing the behavior (as perceived by the person considering the behavior)|
|Attitude||A person's positive or negative feelings about performing a specific behavior|
|Behavioral Belief||A belief that behavioral performance is associated with certain attributes or outcomes (if I study hard for the SATs for a few months, I will probably get a higher score than I did last year without studying at all)|
|Evaluation||The value attached to a behavioral outcome or attribute (if I study hard and get a better score on the SATs, that is a good or thing because it will increase the chances of getting into a good college)|
|Subjective Norm||Beliefs about what others will think about the behavior (getting into a good college would make my parents proud)|
|Normative Beliefs||Belief about whether key individuals and groups approve or disapprove of the behavior (my parents, friends, and teachers think going to a good college is important and approve of people who attain this achievement)|
|Motivation to Comply||Whether or not the person's intentions and behavior will be affected by what others think (it matters a lot to me what my parents, friends, and teachers think about my plans for my education and my life)|
3 Montaño, DE, Kasprzyk, D, and Taplin, S. The Theory of Reasoned Action and the Theory of Planned Behavior. In: Glanz, K, Lewis, FM, and Rimer, BK (Eds). Health Behavior and Health Education (Second Edition). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass Publishers.