turning to crime the role of cognition n.
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TURNING TO CRIME~ THE ROLE OF COGNITION. ATTRIBUTION OF BLAME. ATTRIBUTION THEORY. Attribution theory explores how individuals "attribute" causes to events and how this cognitive perception affects their motivation.

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Presentation Transcript
attribution theory
ATTRIBUTION THEORY
  • Attribution theory explores how individuals "attribute" causes to events and how this cognitive perception affects their motivation.
  • This theory was first proposed in a book called, The Psychology of Interpersonal Relations by Fritz Heider in 1958. According to Heider, people behave as amateur scientists in social situations – we develop theories or ideas about why we and other people act the way we/they do and why things happen.
internal external attributions
INTERNAL & EXTERNAL attributions

An internal attribution is :-

  • Internal or dispositional attributions assign causality to factors within the person, such as their own level of intelligence, or other variables that make the individual responsible for the event.
  • When we make an internal attribution we believe that whatever happened happened because of something WE did.

An external attribution is :-

  • External or situational attributions assign causality to an outside factor, such as the weather. When we make an external attribution we believe that whatever happened happened because of something SOMEONE ELSE did. Or, if no other people are involved, it happened because of factors external to us.
the fundamental attribution error
THE FUNDAMENTAL ATTRIBUTION ERROR
  • When we make an incorrect external attribution – we make an external attribution when we should have made an internal one
  • Can you think of an example when this might happen?
the fundamental attribution error forensic psychology
THE FUNDAMENTAL ATTRIBUTION ERROR & FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGY
  • How is the fundamental attribution error relevant to forensic psychology?
  • It is suggested that criminals blame other people or other things for their crimes - they make faulty external attributions - they are more prone to make the fundamental attribution error than non-criminals
gudjohnsson
GUDJOHNSSON
  • criminals make more attribution errors than non-criminals
  • developed an inventory to measure attributions of blame for crimes.
  • Gudjohnsson Blame Attribution Inventory (GBAI)
the gbai
THE GBAI
  • 3 basic dimensions are GBAI :-
    • external attribution –the thought that crimes were due to external factors e.g provocation, social factors etc
    • mental-element attribution –the belief that the crimes were due to mental or psychological factors e.g low mood or a temporary loss of control. Criminals scoring high on this dimension will see their crime as being “out of character”
    • guilt-feeling attribution –the amount of guilt or remorse the felt after committing the crime
feelings of guilt after committing a crime
FEELINGS OF GUILT AFTER COMMITTING A CRIME
  • Also studied criminals feelings of guilt after committing their crimes and the relationship with :-
    • the criminals perception of their crime
    • the type of crime committed
    • the personality of the criminal
    • the eagerness with which the criminal confesses to the police.
other researchers
Other Researchers
  • Another commonly used scale is the Attribution of Blame Scale (ABS) developed by Loza & Clements (1991)
  • Both aim to measure an offenders :-
    • Perceptions
    • Understanding of crimes rather than the actual causes
why is it important to understand why criminals do what they do
Why is it important to understand WHY criminals do what they do?
  • It is important for establishing responsibility .
  • Assessing how responsible a criminal is for their actions has huge implications for prosecution and sentencing
  • It also has implications for the rehabilitation of offenders
revision of the gbai
REVISION OF THE GBAI
  • Revised GBAI in 1989 to overcome 2 problems
    • 1 - The original measured attitudes towards crime AND specific crimes
    • 2 - Wording of the external attributions questions so that the “right” answer was obvious
  • The revised GBAI consists of 42 questions
feelings of guilt
FEELINGS OF GUILT
  • Which group of offenders do you think would report more feelings of guilt about their crimes

people who committed sex offences or people who committed other kinds of offences?

slide15
Task
  • Read Attribution of Blame study in your text books
  • In groups, start to think about evaluation points of the study ~ critically analyse it!
    • Caution with findings?
    • Strengths
    • Weaknesses
    • Application?
  • Summarise the Cognition section of Turning to crime in your notes
  • Complete the ‘check your understanding’ questions in your text books
slide16
Task
  • In groups, brainstorm evaluation points for the theories of cognition
  • Criminal Thinking Patterns ( ??? )
  • Moral Development ( ??? )
  • Attribution of Blame ( ??? )
task 2
Task 2
  • Application to real life….
  • Prepare a session of cognitive therapy to change thinking patterns
    • Something as simple as smoking / drinking
    • A criminal career or one of the examples from the news