Motivation and emotion/Tutorials/20 emotions

Tutorial 09: 20 emotions

Resource type: this resource contains a tutorial or tutorial notes.

This is the ninth tutorial for the motivation and emotion unit of study.


This tutorial discusses the nature and functions of 20 individual emotions.

Individual emotionsEdit

Emotion knowledge can be developed by learning to distinguish a wide range emotions.

When dealing with many emotions, it helps to chunk them into categories.

According to Reeve (2018), which emotions fit into these three categories? (see Table 1)

  1. Basic (7)
  2. Self-conscious (5)
  3. Cognitively complex (8)

Table 1

20 Individual Emotions Organised Into Three Categories

Basic (7) Self-conscious (5) Cognitively complex (8)
Fear Shame Envy
Anger Guilt Gratitude
Disgust Embarrassment Disappointment
Contempt Pride Regret
Sadness Triumph Hope
Joy Schadenfreude
Interest Empathy

Note. Based on Reeve, 2018; links go to Wikipedia articles. For a table of these emotions with links to specific Wikiversity book chapters, see the individual emotions lecture

Emotion matching exerciseEdit

  1. In pairs, discuss and complete the 20 Individual Emotions Matching Exercise


  1. What is your "favourite" or "most interesting" emotion(s)? Why?
  2. Self-conscious emotions
    1. What is the difference between shame, guilt, and embarrassment?
      1. Shame and guilt both involve feeling bad about the standard of the self's behaviour.
      2. Shame is public; Guilt is private (shame in the courtroom (public); guilt in the cell (private))
      3. Shame focuses on self; Guilt focuses on behaviour
      4. Embarrassment arises from an innocent social blunder to acknowledge awareness of, and ask
    2. What is the difference between pride and triumph?
    3. What are the two aspects of pride?
      1. Authentic: Based on actual achievements
      2. Narcissistic/Hubristic: Based on a desire to be better/more dominant than others; undermines relationships forgiveness, for the mistake
  3. Cognitively complex emotions
    1. What are the two types of envy?
      1. Benign: Focuses on self-improvement (building up)
      2. Malicious: Focuses on undermining another (tearing down)
    2. What emotions are associated with these interpersonal scenarios?
      1. I feel good because the other person feels
        • good - mudita, compersion
        • bad - schadenfreude, contempt, narcissism, arrogance
      2. I feel bad because the other person feels
        • good - envy, jealousy
        • bad - empathy, compassion
    3. What is the difference between disappointment and regret?
      1. Both involve experiencing a worse outcome than expected; the difference is the amount of perceived control.
      2. Disappointment: Perceives that one's behaviour could not have lead to a different outcome
      3. Regret: Perceives that, had one's behaviour been different, a better outcome could have been achieved
    4. What is the difference between empathy, compassion, and sympathy?
      1. Empathy: Mirrors the feelings of another
      2. Compassion: Motivates action to help another
      3. Sympathy: Pitying of others; involves power
    5. What are the two aspects of gratitude?
      1. Indebtedness   Exchange-based relationship: If the receiver focuses on what was received (e.g., $50), then the receiver may feel indebted to repay, leading to an exchange-based relationship
      2. Care   Communal relationship: If the receiver focuses on the giver (e.g., a friend), then the receiver may feel cared for and loved, leading to a communal relationship
    6. What is the opposite of hope?
      1. Fear
      2. Both fear and hope are about expectations of the future
      3. Also consider hopelessness / helplessness



See alsoEdit



Reeve, J. (2018). Understanding motivation and emotion (7th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. The School Locker. Google Books. Instructor companion site. UC Library. ISBN: Paperback 978-1-119-36760-4, E-text 978-1-119-36765-9. Rent e-text.

External linksEdit