Ch 11 Prosocial Behavior.student

Ch 11 Prosocial Behavior.student - Prosocial Behavior...

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Unformatted text preview: Prosocial Behavior Helping Prosocial Behavior • Prosocial behavior: – Any act performed with the goal of benefiting another person • Altruism: – Any act that benefits another person but does not benefit the helper • Does altruism exist? Why do people help? Evolutionary Theory • Kin selection: closer someone is to you genetically the more likely you are to help them. • Parents behave more altruistically to healthy offspring to unhealthy ones (Dovidio et al., 1991) Evolutionary Theory • Genetic Relatedness and Helping – – – – – Would you lend your car to your brother? What about your grandfather? What about a cousin? What about an attractive stranger? Michael Cunningham and his colleagues asked people whether they would be willing to help other people in different situations Cunningham et al., 1995 80 60 Percentage 40 Volunteering 20 to Help 0 High (parents, siblings, children) Mod. (grand­ parents) Low None (first (acquainta cousins) nces) Degree of Relatedness Burnstein, Crandall, & Kitayama, 1994 3.0 2.5 Percentage 2.0 Volunteering to Help 1.5 1.5 1.0 The difference becomes even more pronounced in life­ or­death situations Degree of Relatedness High (parents, siblings, children) Mod. (grand­ parents) Low None (first (acquainta cousins) nces) Evolutionary Theory • Criticisms of theory – – Doesn’t explain why people help strangers Social factors are more important than biology • – Interdependence / Social­Exchange Theory Maximize benefits and minimize costs We examine the costs and rewards of helping and not helping 3 rewards of helping 1. Reciprocity 2. Relieves distress 3. Social approval • This approach denies the role or even existence of altruism Norms & Helping • Norm of social responsibility: we should help others who depend on us • Norm of reciprocity: we should help those who help us (Coke study) • Norm of fairness & social justice: rules about fairness and the just distribution of resources Learning Theory • Emphasizes the importance of learning to be helpful • We learn social norms about helping and develop habits of helpfulness • Reinforcement – people help when they are rewarded • Observational learning – Modeling Attribution Theory • People are more likely to help someone if they feel the person deserves it • We make attributions about other’s needs and then decide whether to help • We feel sympathy and concern for those who suffer through no fault of their own Empathy­Altruism Hypothesis • Batson – Pure altruism exists • Empathy­altruism hypothesis – When we feel empathy, we help for altruistic reasons – When we do not feel empathy, we help for social exchange reasons Empathy­Altruism Hypothesis Toi & Batson, 1982 – IVs: 1. Empathy instructions (high vs. low) 2. Costs of helping (high vs. low) – DV: whether Ps agreed to help Carol Toi & Batson, 1982 When do people help? Gender and Helping • Women are universally perceived as kinder, more soft­ hearted, and more helpful (Williams & Best, 1990) • But over 90% of Carnegie Hero awards go to men (for saving, or attempting to save, the life of another). Why? • Women: – 1) help those they already know; 2) help in nurturing ways involving long­term commitment. • Men: – 1) help strangers in emergency situations; 2) help in chivalrous, heroic ways. Time Pressure & Helping Good Samaritan Study (Darley & Batson, 1973) • Seminary students on way to lecture • IVs: 1. lecture (Good Samaritan vs. control); 2. early, on time, or late • DV: Helping Good Samaritan Study (Darley & Batson, 1973) 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Early On Time % Helping Late Early On Time Late Mood & Helping • People are more willing to help when they are in a good mood • Isen & Levin, 1972 – 84% of those who found dime helped, only 4% of those who did not find dime helped • Why do good moods increase helping? 1. Interpret events sympathetically 2. Mood­maintenance 3. Good moods can increase self­attention (not always) Mood & Helping • People in a bad mood will help under certain conditions • Negative­state relief hypothesis – People help to alleviated their own sadness and distress Environment & Helping • Sunshine: people are more likely to help when it’s sunny and temperature is comfortable • Strangers are more likely to be helped in small towns than large cities • Why? – More neighborly and trust more? – Urban­overload hypothesis • Population density more important than population size Bystander Effect • Bystander effect video (Latané & Darley) • Kitty Genovese (1964) • Smoke­filled room study (Latané and Darley, 1968) – IV: left alone; with 2 other real participants, or with 2 other confederates who pretended nothing was wrong – DV: Percentage of participants who reported smoke Smoke­Filled Room Study (Latané & Darley, 1968) 80 60 40 20 0 Percentage Reporting Smoke Alone With 2 other real subjects With 2 calm confederates Bystander Effect Seizure study (Darley & Latané, 1968) • Participants communicated over intercom. Heard a participant have a seizure IV: # of other participants DVs: 1) % who help; 2)mean time to help • • Seizure Study (Darley & Latané, 1968) 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 % Helping by 1st Minute Alone 1 Other Bystander 4 Other Bystanders Situational Influences: 5 Steps to Helping Step 1: Notice the Event • In order to help, you must realize something is happening. • Often people are distracted and don’t even notice (especially in large cities) Notice NO YES Step 2 Don’t help Step 2: Interpret as Emergency If you see someone lying on the sidewalk, does that mean they need or want help? • Pluralistic ignorance can play a role here – Others not helping, must not be a problem YES Emergency? Step 3 NO Don’t help Step 3: Feel responsible • Just because you notice someone in need of help, is that your problem? • Diffusion of responsibility plays a role at this step Responsible? NO YES Step 4 Don’t help Step 4: Know how to help • If someone appears to need medical care and you’re not a nurse or doctor, then what? – If you can’t offer appropriate help, you likely won’t try Know how? NO YES Step 5 Don’t help Step 5: Assess costs of helping • You see someone in need of help, you feel responsible, you know what to do, but… – – – Could be highly dangerous Could make you financially liable Could embarrass you Cost to me? HIGH LOW Help Don’t help Helping Tree (Latané & Darley, 1970) Who do we help? • Liking • Similarity • Deserving – Can be problematic – our own biases may influence our interpretation of deservingness Communal vs. Exchange Relationships • Clark & Mills, 1993 • Generally, more likely to help in a communal relationship than in an exchange relationship Receiving Help • Attribution theory: people are motivated to understand why they need help and why others are offering to help them • If we perceive that people are helping us because they genuinely care about us and our welfare, it makes us feel good • If acceptingaid implies that we’re incompetent, it threatens our self­esteem Receiving Help • People are likely to ask for help when they think they will be able to repay it in some form • Receiving help can create an imbalance of power ...
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This note was uploaded on 03/20/2008 for the course PSYC 260 taught by Professor Traceycallison during the Spring '08 term at UNC.

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