Can the capabilities, opportunities and motivations model predict behavior one year later?

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OBJECTIVE. The capabilities (C), opportunities (O) and motivations (M) model of behavior (B) change (COM-B) is designed to capture the key features of numerous models of behavior change, but little is known about its predictive validity. The present study tests the predictive validity of COM-B prospectively in the domain of attending hearing screening.
METHODS. 6,000 UK adults, representative of the UK population (e.g., 52.6% women) who one year earlier had reported COM with respect to attending hearing screening, were contacted again to complete an online survey with respect to their actual attendance. Data were analyzed descriptively, and with logistic regression to examine the influence of sociodemographic variables and COM on attendance at hearing screening.
RESULTS. Respondents reported being highly capable of attending hearing screening (Ms > 7.98 on a 0-10 scale), but much lower levels of automatic (M = 4.21 on a 0-10 scale) and reflective (M = 5.21 on a 0-10 scale) motivations. Logistic regression analyses showed that men and older people were more likely to have their hearing checked but that hearing difficulty was the dominant determinant of attending hearing screening. Controlling for these sociodemographic and clinical variables, opportunities and motivations (but not capabilities) were also significantly associated with behavior.
CONCLUSIONS. The COM-B model was predictive of attending hearing screening over a 1-year period, which potentially makes it valuable for understanding health behavior change. Interventions for improving uptake in hearing screening that go beyond increasing knowledge and skills (capabilities) are required to increase attendance at hearing screening.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHealth Psychology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 13 Dec 2022


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