Lecture on April 16th: Prosocial Behavior

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Psychology & Brain Sciences
John Bickford

Social Psychology, Lecture on April 16 , 2013 Prosocial Behavior Any action that helps others.  Usually without direct benefit to self.  Different kinds. o Dimension: planning, severity, directness.  McGuire’s typology. o Casual, substantial, emotional, emergency. Emergency helping: Five steps to emergency helping, 1. Noticing 2. Interpreting 3. Assuming responsibility 4. Deciding 5. Rendering Noticing the emergency.  Time pressures. o Darley and Batson, 1973: “Good Samaritan” study.  Students studying to become priests. Finished studies and were told that they had to go give a talk. (IV:) Some were told they had to talk about job opportunities other had to take about being a good Samaritan. (IV:) Some were told they had lots of time until their talk, others were told they were already late. On the way to the talk, a man who was slumped in a doorway and seemingly hurt was present, men who had time before their talk, 63% helped. When the priests were told they were late, 10% helped.  Bystander effect: as the number of bystanders increase, emergency helping tends to decrease. o Kitty incident: woman is assaulted after work; over thirty witnesses overheard her screams but no one in the neighborhood bothered to call the police. In a half an hour period, the murderer assaulted her three different times and finally killed her after nobody helped her.  Interpreting the event as an emergency. o Is the correct schema activated?  James Bulger o Pluralistic ignorance,  Believing that n one else is feeling the way you are.  Contributes to bystander effect.  Taking responsibility. o Diffusion of responsibility.
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