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The theoretical question that has been posed in this article is whether prosocial private self-schemas and prosocial private self-awareness are predictors of prosocial behavior. The self-schema is believed to play an important role in the regulation of behavior. It is believed that behavior is influenced by the activation of a schema. This schema is connected to the perception of self. Little evidence is shown to conclude that self-schemas are independently influencing any type of behavior and it is presumed that both the descriptive information about the self and the behavioral information are stored independently of each other. This would infer that the linkages that are between the self-schema and behaviors are not completely definite.
To have an influence on behavior private self-attention is critical. One must be self-aware in order to adhere to private self-awareness. This private self-awareness seems to have a lower limit of approximately age nine.
The question asked is that of, are there definite linkages between the prosocial self and the prediction of prosocial behavior and if so what are those linkages.
In the first study of three, the subjects were above the age of nine years. The reason for that was that children begin to label themselves differently. At this age, children start to label themselves with more traits and not with behavioral self-descriptions. There were thirty-eight participants from fifth through seventh grade. There was nineteen of each gender. The study examined the two self-schema and the schemalike control measures. The two self-schemas were private self-attention and private self-awareness. The two schemalike control measures were communion and agency words with different probe questions. Some of the questions were like ?Is this word like you?? or ?Is this a nice word??
The procedure conducted in the first experiment was straightforward. The participants were brought to a testing room by one of the two experimenters. The experimenters were both women. The participant would then be told that they would be participating in a series of different games, puzzles, and questionnaires. The children were told that for their participation they would receive fifteen tokens that were worth ten cents each. The tokens could be exchanged for a gift certificate to Baskin Robbins. The children were then told that they could give some of their tokens to the children that were not in the study but they did not have to if they did not want to.
To manipulate the private self-awareness the experimenter used an abbreviated version of the California Q-sort for children. The California Q-sort caused the children to focus on their real self and then again on their ideal self. The Children not in this condition did thinks such as ?Name as many cars as you can?.
The experimenter informed the participants that she had to leave for a minute. The experimenter then gave the children a chance to donate some of their tokens in private to those who have none but you do not have to if you do not want to. This was done for the private self-awareness task.
For the private self-schema task, the participants were then given a task designed to measure to the extent at which they had articulated a private self-schema in each of the two domains. The two domains are communion and agency words. The communion list of twenty-five words contained altruistic behavior descriptors. The other twenty-five words were for the agency group. They were synonyms of the first twenty-five words. The two lists were randomly interspersed to make a combined list of fifty words. Probe questions were used to determine for non-self-schematic control, the probe question for that was ?Is this a nice word?? for the self-schematic control the probe question was ?Is this word like you??
To measure they eliminated the first four words and the final four words in the list to reduce the notions of primacy and recency effects. Then a ratio was devised by using how the number of the words that the children recalled. Each word recalled was separated into its? respective category of like the self of or nice. Using these separations, a ratio was calculated. There also was a computation done for the response to the ?nice? question.
The design of the experiment was a 2x2x2, which were self-aware vs. non-self-aware by gender by prosocial self-schema.
The result of the first study concluded that private self-awareness is linked to the behavior displayed. They also was a three way interaction found. The interaction was found in the non-self-aware females, self-aware females, and the non-self-aware males.
The experimenters conducted the second study with the same paradigm as in the first experiment. In this experiment, they were attempting to explore the reasons for the differences in gender that were discovered in the first study. There are two types of gender differences. The types of gender differences are for males, they are generally more assertive, and females are generally more nurturing.
The results show that females have a higher prosocial self-schema. The males had a lower prosocial self-schema. There was also no interaction found in this study, like the three way interaction found in the first study.
The third study was conducted to examine the presence or absence of gender differences more explicitly in the matter of salience of the behavior-specifying material.
It was found that their initial hypothesis was confirmed, that private self-schemas could regulate behavior under the condition of private self-awareness.
I feel that this study is important because it may be able to predict future behaviors of different students latter in life. The prediction of prosocial behavior can be useful latter in life. These predictions would allow us to be better prepared for things that might occur and thus giving us a more intelligent response to the problem.
The authors assumed that giving money or something of value is the best way of producing prosocial behavior. They also assumed that if it was conducted in private that it would more fulfilling.
The procedures that were used seemed to be what they needed to get the results they were looking for. There were a few things that I did not agree with; one was the fact that they used only women experimenters. I would like to know their basis behind why they only used women. The second is if they gave the experiment in groups to all the participants or if it was done on a more individual level. The reason I ask that is because some people are more willing to give if they are not in groups but are by themselves but that would just show a private self-schemas.
I agree with the conclusions of these experiments. They show a great deal of planning and research. The methods that were used were backed by previous research. I think that the only alternative explanation there could be it that the sample size was just too small.
There would be at least two follow-up studied conducted. The first would almost identical to the first study here. I would change the experimenters to one group with one male and one female and a second would be conducted with two male experimenters. I would expect to find by doing this a greater interaction with the self-aware males.
The second follow-up experiment would be one of the topics touched upon in the general discussion. I would conduct a study in the qualifications that are important and that are necessary for prosocial behavior.
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