Components of Attitude

Components of Attitude

Person’s attitude comprises of following three components :
1. Cognitive component
Cognitive refers to the knowledge a person assumes to have about something. It refers to the opinion, belief, segment of an attitude.the knowledge or cognition is based on the perception of truth or empirical reality. The cognitive component is very important and consists of the individual’s perceptions like beliefs and ideas. According to Krech et al., the cognition include ’evaluative beliefs’ such as old or bad, desirable or undesirable, favourable or unfavourable qualities of an object. If affective component refers to feelings, this cognitive component refers to beliefs.
Example
Attending a class because of the belief that the instructor is outstanding as well as the subject has good career scope.
A supervisor may beleive that two weeks of training is essential for a worker before operating the machine in a production line whereas in reality the average worker will get command over machine even after a training of five days. Yet the information that supervisor is using describes his attitude towards training.

2. Affective component
It refers to the emotions associated with an attitude object. Basically, it consists of the feelings a person has towards an object. These are negative, positive or neutral feelings towards an object. It is often expressed as like or dislike, good or bad, pleasing or displeasing, favourable or unfavourable. The expression of love, hate, etc. are treated as affective component.People develop attitudes on the basis of their experiences, values, beliefs and information related to the object. It hardly matters whether that information has any empirical or factual grounds.
Example
i. Preference to work in a team rather than independently
ii. Considering government employees as lazy hence, preferring to work in MNCs or private companies.

3. Behavioural component
It refers to the way one intends to behave towards an object. Both the cognitive and affective components influence the way a person intends to behave towards an object.
Example
i. The positive affective and cognitive component towards an instructor or class drives students to attend all his classes.
ii. The supervisor who has strong affective and cognitive notions about training would insist on sending the workers for two weeks training program.