1. Introduction to Prosocial Behaviour

1. Introduction to Prosocial Behaviour - Introduction to...

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Introduction to Prosocial Behaviour Lecture One January 6 th , 2015 This course focuses on helping, although there are many forms of prosocial behaviours Defining helping behaviour o Behaviour that is intended to benefit the recipient o It occurs when a person/group is in need and another person/group attempts to aid them Arland William Jr. o Average man, worked for a bank in Washington o One night a jet he was on crashed into the bridge and fell into the icy water, only 5 people survived and were stranded in the water o Police rescued them one by one, but whenever they tried to rescue Arland, he passed the rope to the other people, putting them first, lowering his chances of survival o He died Reginald Andrews o He was standing near a subway in New York City o A blind elderly man is in front of him who ends up falling into the tracks o Reginald pulls him to safety just as the cars start moving, saving his life o Someone anonymously sent him money to pay off his debts Homelessness o One of the most potent examples of our failure to help those most in need o ‘a national disgrace’ o Compare this to life among the Moose (MOH-saw) of west Africa They are the poorest nation in the world, have very little land and too many people and far from enough water Yet if you go there, they would give you their land, give you their water, give you anything Asking ‘do people help’ is not enough, it does not give you a useful answer o Instead, you must ask why do people help, when do people help, and whom do they help Prosocial Behaviour: Multilevel Perspectives Reading One Prosocial behaviour is defined by some significant segment of society and/or one’s social group as generally beneficial to other people o McDougall says it is the result of tender emotions created by the parental instinct Meso level of analysis o Refers to studying the behaviours of helper-recipient dyads within the context of a specific situation; helping at this level has been the traditional focus of psychological work on prosocial behaviour o Helping is at the interpersonal level: one person helping another o When people help Depends on the outcomes of a series of prior decisions that involve recognizing the situation as one requiring assistance, deciding to take personal responsibility, and deciding how to help Cot reward analysis of helping: people are motivated to maximize their rewards and to minimize their costs Arrive at a decision that will result in the best personal outcome for them Situational factors that make bystander interventions more likely to occur include those that decrease the net costs of, increase potential rewards of helping or increase the costs of not helping
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o Why people help Focused on three types of mechanisms
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  • Spring '15
  • DougHazlewood
  • Psychology, prosocial behaviour, Prosocial Behaviours

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