class 18 - 03:29:12.doc

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Pennsylvania State University
Nicholas Pearson

Class 18 – 3/29/12 Prosocial Behavior Situational Determinants of Helping – Bystander intervention research – Revisiting the case of Kitty Genovese – The more people who witness an emergency, the less likely it is for any of them to help – In your own personal emergency, hope there are few witnesses Darley and Latane Decision Tree 1) notice the event 2) Interpret the event as an emergency 3) assume responsibility 4) know appropriate form of assistance 5) Decide to implement the help – Notice the event – in order for people to help, they must know that help is needed (duh) – Not noticing – Darley and Batson (1973) – Had seminary students (future priests) walk past a confederate who was collapsed in the doorway – Those in a hurry were much less likely to help – Interpreting the event as an emergency – How do we know that what we are seeing is really an emergency? (informational social influence) – Pluralistic Ignorance: In an ambiguous situation, everyone is looking to everyone else for clues about the situation. If no one reacts (because no one else is reacting) then everyone will interpret the situation as a non-emergency – The more people to witness an event, the less likely it is that anyone will help – Assume responsibility – In order for help to be given, someone must “step up” and give the help – When there are many witnesses, there can be a diffusion of responsibility – Each persons sense of responsibility decreases as the number of people increases – Everyone assumes that someone else will help, and as a result, no one helps – Know appropriate form of assistance – If you don't know how to help, you can't help – Deciding to implement the help
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