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Unformatted text preview: ehaviour occurred. Having made this observation, it would be naive to
assume that attributions are always free from bias or error. Earlier, we discussed a
number of very basic perceptual biases, and it stands to reason that the complex
task of attribution would also be open to bias. Let us consider the fundamental attribution error, actor–observer effect, and self-serving bias.13
Fundamental Attribution Error. Suppose you make a mistake in attributing a
cause to someone else’s behaviour. Would you be likely to err on the side of a dispositional cause or a situational cause? Substantial evidence indicates that when we
make judgments about the behaviour of people other than ourselves, we tend to
overemphasize dispositional explanations at the expense of situational explanations.
This is called the fundamental attribution error.14
Why does the fundamental attribution error occur? For one thing, we often discount the strong effects that social roles can have on behaviour. We might see bankers
as truly conservative people because we ignor...
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This document was uploaded on 03/27/2014.
- Spring '14