Lecture 10: Attributions...
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Social impact theory (Latane, 1981)
- Social pressure directed towards a group is divided amongst its members.
- As group size increases, each individual feels under less pressure to contribute his or her maximum effort.
People exerting less effort to achieve a goal when they work in a group than when they work alone.
Correspondent inference (Jones & Davis, 1965)
- Accounts for a perceiver's inferences about what an actor was trying to achieve by a particular action.
- Aims to explain why people make internal/external attributions.
Tendency for the presence of others to improve a person's performance.
The tendency to attribute our own behaviours externally and other's behaviour internally.
Covariation principle (Kelly, 1967)
People assign the cause of a behaviour to the factor that covaries most likely with the behaviour.
Outcome of Covariation model (Kelly, 1967)
Whether behaviour is determined by internal or external characteristics.
Limitations of correspondence inference include:
- Only applies to single observations
- Theory only details processes involved in making dispositional attributions. Internal vs. external.
Covariation information includes the following 3 things:
Fundamental attribution error
The tendency to make internal attributions over external attributions in explaining the behaviour of others.
Internal over external.
The 3 analyses of Naive scientist (Heider, 1958):
1. Motivational aspect: behaviour is motivated.
2. Predict and control: we construct causal theories to explain the environment.
3. Attribution: we make assumptions for types of behaviour - either internal (dispositional) or external (situational).
Naive scientist experiment (Heider, 1958) characterised people as....
Using rational, scientific-like, "cause-effect" analyses to understand their world.
Attribution is defined as...
the process by which we make inferences about the causes of behaviours and events.
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