Psychology 280 March 13, 2008 Causal Attribution I. Major assumptions 1. People seek to assign causes for behaviors and events in their world. 2. They do so systematically; we can study the rules they obey. 3. Causal attributions guide social inference and prediction, and have important consequences for feelings and behavior. They matter. 4. An important distinction is between causes of behavior internal to the actor (dispositional) vs. causes external to the actor (situational). II. The single observation case and the discounting principle : The role of a given cause in producing a given effect is discounted if other plausible causes are also present. - The flip-side: the augmentation principle - to employ the discounting/augmentation principles, one must be something of an intuitive psychologist . (Example: Muhammed Ali in textbook) III. The multiple observation case and the covariation principle : An effect is attributed to the cause with which, over time, it covaries. Particularly relevant to person vs. situation
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This note was uploaded on 03/30/2008 for the course PSYCH 2800 taught by Professor Gilovich,t/regan,d during the Spring '08 term at Cornell.