ERIC Number: ED199247
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Affective Sensitivity as Related to Instrumentality and Expressiveness.
Hurlburt, John D.; Carlozzi, Alfred F.
The ability to empathize with clients or students is a prime factor in the counselor's or teacher's success. Affective sensitivity, or acuteness in detecting and describing the emotions of others, is a critical component of empathy. It has generally been assumed that the masculine orientation toward instrumental or cognitive focus on problem solving is less conducive to empathy than is the feminine inclination toward expressive and affective concern for others. In this study, male and female graduate students in counseling and education were tested for their reaction to and interpretation of videotaped personal encounters. Results indicated that, while affective sensitivity and expressive characteristics are positively related, there was little difference between males and females in relation to affective sensitivity. These findings suggest that the critical factor is not necessarily gender, but degree of expressive characteristics in the individual. Instrumental and expressive traits are not gender specific, but are dualistic within both males and females. (JD)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Meeting of the Southwest Educational Research Association (Dallas, TX, 1981).