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SOCIAL COGNITION. How we process information about other people and draw conclusions about them. ATTRIBUTION. Attibution = giving reasons for why things happen Foundations of attribution theories :

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social cognition

SOCIAL COGNITION

Howweprocessinformationaboutotherpeople and drawconclusionsaboutthem

attribution
ATTRIBUTION
  • Attibution = givingreasons for whythingshappen
  • Foundations of attributiontheories:

Heider 1944: need to makesense of the social world need to developideas and theoriesabout the causesunderlyingbehaviour

- causesarelyingeitherwithin the person (adispositionalattribution) orwithin the situation (a situationalattribution)

diffefent attribution theories
DIFFEFENT ATTRIBUTION THEORIES
  • Based on Heider’sview
  • Notalternativesbutdifferentinsights to the attributionprocess
  • Correspondentinferencetheory
  • Jones and David 1965
  • Attributionprocess:

Decidingwhether action is deliberateornot Ifyes, matching of a behaviourwith a personalcharacteristic: correspondentinference

slide4
Wepreferstablecauses

 Weneed to judgewhether an action is intentional

 Wemakedistinctionbetweendispositional and situationalattributions

  • Threemajorfactorsaffectingwhether a dispositionalattribution is made
    • Principle of non-commoneffects
    • Personalism
    • Hedonicrelevance
slide5
According to Jones and Davis wehavetendencyto
    • assumethatactionsaredeliberate
    • Makedispositionalattributions
  • Evaluation:
    • Canonlybeapplied to actionsinterpreted as deliberate
    • Evidenceagainstthisview:
      • Guimond and Palmer 1990 (A-Level p.183)
slide6
2) Kelley’scovariationmodel 1967;1973

Whenmakingjudgement on whethercauses for someone’sbehaviouraredispositional of situationalwe look for threekinds of causalinformation:

a) consensus: the extent to whichotherpeoplebehave the sameway

b) distinctiveness: the extent to whichonebehaves the sameway in comparablesituations

c) consistency: the extent to whichone’sbehaviour is stableovertime

slide7
Lowconsensus + lowdistinctiveness + highconsistency =>dispositionalattribution
  • Anyothercombination => situationalattribution
  • Evaluation of the theory:
    • Studysupporting the model:
      • McArthur 1972 (p.185)
    • Problems:
      • Peopledon’tseem to useallthreesources of informationequally (Major 1980)
      • Peoplemayuseotherkinds of informationwhenmakingattributions (Garland et al.1975)
      • Notthatmucheffort is alwaysput to attribution
slide8
Kelleydevelopedhismodel (1972): Whenthereisn’tinformationaboutconcensus, distinctiveness and consistencyweusecausalschemata = general conceptions a person hasabouthowcertainkinds of causesinteract to produce a specifickind of effect
  • Differentcausalschemata:
    • Multiplesufficientcauses
    • Discountingprinciple(whenhaving a reason to believethatoneexplanation is morelikely)  tendency to situationalattribution
    • Whenbehaviour is ’in role’ wetend to makesituationalattributions
    • Multiplenecessarycauses
syllabus the learning outcome related to the theories of attribution
Syllabus: THE LEARNING OUTCOME RELATED TO THE THEORIES OF ATTRIBUTION:

Describe the role of situational and dispositionalfactors in explainingbehaviour

“Describe: Give a detailed account.”

WRITE AN ESSAY ABOUT THIS TOPIC FOR NEXT LESSON!

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