Lecture 15 - Justifying Our Actions Pt. 2, Helping Pt. 1
Lecture 15 - Justifying Our Actions Pt. 2, Helping Pt. 1 PSYC 2012
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Leslie Ogu on Tuesday March 29, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC 2012 at George Washington University taught by Stock, M in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 7 views. For similar materials see Social Psychology in Psychlogy at George Washington University.
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Date Created: 03/29/16
Leslie Ogu PSYC 2012 03/23/2016 Justifying Our Actions Pt. 2, Helping Pt. 1 Justifying Our Actions Pt. 2 Alternative to Dissonance Theory ➢ SelfAffirmation: the recognition and assertion of the existence and value of one’s individual self ○ An indirect strategy for reducing cognitive dissonance ■ Restoring positive selfevaluations / selfconcepts threatened by the dissonance ■ Reducing dissonance by adding cognition about other positive attributes ○ Accomplished by focusing on positive selfattributes (i.e., the good things about yourself) ■ Ex: “I broke my diet today, but I’m a friendly person” ● Works best for those “atrisk” ** The Ben Franklin Effect ➢ Def: dissonance theory predicts we will like someone more after doing them a favor ➢ “He that has once done you a kindness will be more ready to do you another than he whom you yourself have obliged” ○ Franklin reported this after he borrowed a book from a political opponent and the other politician became more civil towards him Helping Pt. 1 Definitions (Intro) ➢ Prosocial Behavior: any act performed with the goal of benefiting another person ○ ** NOT always selfless ** ○ Requires an actual action or activity ■ Ex: The action of donating to a charity ➢ Altruism: motive / desire to help another person even if it involves a cost (or at least no benefit) to the helper ○ Life or death situations usually altruistic Why Do We Help? ** ➢ Evolutionary Psychology ○ If the goal is to ensure our own survival, why should we help others at a cost to ourselves? ○ Why do we help nonkin? ■ Norm of Reciprocity (or reciprocal altruism): the expectation that helping others will increase the likelihood of them helping us in the future ● Adaptive strategy for our ancestors ⇒ becomes geneticallybased tendency ➢ Kin Selection: behaviors that help a genetic relative are favored by natural selections ○ This means a gene that causes an individual to help genetic relatives is actually helping a copy of itself ■ Ex: People say they would be more likely to help their genetic relatives than their nonrelatives in lifethreatening situations ○ Kin are helped more than nonkin especially in lifeordeath situations ○ Females are helped more than males, except elderly female (postmenopausal) ○ Young are helped more than old ○ Healthy relatives helped more than nonhealthy in lifeordeath situations ○ In lifeordeath situations, relatedness matters (this assures our genes will continue) ○ In everyday helping situations, needs prevail over genes (helping those who actually need help) ➢ Social Learning Theory: helping is learned through observation and reinforcement ○ Children learn to help by being rewarded ○ As people mature, reinforcements become less necessary ** ■ This is because they internalize the value of helping ➢ Social Exchange Theory: maximizing rewards / benefits and minimizing the costs ○ People will help when the rewards are high relative to the costs ○ Ex(s) of Rewards: social approval, feeling good about yourself ○ Ex(s) of Costs: physical danger, time, embarrassment, guilt Who Will Help? ** ➢ Gender Differences ○ Women are more likely to give longterm, nurturing help ○ Men are more likely to help in emergencies, especially when there is: ■ An audience ■ Potential danger ■ A woman in need of help ➢ Religiosity ○ Religious people are only slightly more likely to help during emergencies ○ Religious people are more likely to provide “planned” help ■ Ex: volunteering, giving to charity ➢ Mood ○ Good moods can lead to helpful behavior ■ Ex: tips on a sunny v. cloudy day ■ Ex: Isen and Levin (1972) study done where dime was left in return slot of telephone ● Those with the dime were more likely to help the confederate pick up papers (84%) opposed to those who didn’t get the dime (4%) ■ Why do good moods predict prosocial behavior? ** ● Helping maintains good mood ● Good moods make us see the good in people ○ Positive Thoughts ⇒ Positive Behavior ● Good moods increase selfawareness ○ More likely to act in accordance with our values ○ ** Bad moods can sometimes lead to prosocial behavior ** ■ Negative State Relief Hypothesis: people help to alleviate their own bad mood (form of prosocial behavior) ○ Exceptions: people who are very depressed or angry do not tend to help much ○ Guilt ■ feelings of guilt tend to increase the likelihood of helping ■ Churchgoers are more likely to contribute to a charity before confession than afterward ■ “Breaking” a camera increases the likelihood of helping a completely different person Similarity ➢ We are more likely to help those similar to us ○ Ingroup v. Outgroup ➢ We like those similar to us ○ Liking lecture and shared birthday study Good Samaritan Study ➢ Princeton Theological Seminary students that were either early or late to give a talk across campus about the old parable of the Good Samaritan ➢ Each of them encountered a man (actor) slumped in a doorway who was coughing and groaning ➢ Results: ○ Time was the main determinant if someone helped or not ■ 63% of participants helped when not in a hurry ■ 10% stopped to help in a rush ■ Those instructed to give the speech about the Good Samaritan speech were twice as likely to help ● However, most didn’t provide help in a hurry
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