ERIC Number: ED165076
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1977
Reference Count: N/A
Effects of Self-Presentational Strategy and Empathic Instructions on Observers' Attributions.
Blakey, Sherry L.; Arkin, Robert M.
The influence of empathy on observers' attributions for an outcome achieved by an actor was examined as well as self-presentational strategies when observers either expected to assume the actor's role later (Role-Playing). On videotape, observer-subjects (N=160) watched an actor succeed or fail at an interpersonal influence task, after being given information designed to lead them to expect either a successful or unsuccessful task outcome. Subjects then made attributions for the therapist-actor's performance. In contrast to standard observers, empathic observers tended to make flattering attributions about the actor's performance on situational variables in positive expectency situations. In addition, role-playing observers made flattering attributions about the actor's performance through their reports on the dispositional variables and engaged in attributions similar to those reported by no role-taking observers. Results suggest that the predictions of role-taking observers which tend to minimize dispositional attributions for the actor's performance due to the self-presentational benefit of maintaining the actor's innocence in task outcome were not supported. (Author)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A