ERIC Number: ED277909
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Attribution Traits Versus Situations: The Cross-Situational Consistency of Attributions.
Barke, Charles R.
While attributions have traditionally been viewed as social cognition variables, some researchers have proposed that individual differences exist in attributional patterns and that these patterns are differentially related to and predictive of various behaviors. A study was conducted to examine the question of attribution style as a trait-like individual difference variable. Crucial to construct validity is the issue of cross-situational consistency of behaviors/responses. A recent study (Cutrona, Russell & Jones, 1985) found only weak evidence for consistency using an attribution measure of stability, internality, and globality. The present study employed the Student Attribution Survey (SAS), a 64-item measure of four types of attribution: Ability, Effort, Task Difficulty, and Luck. Items on the SAS are differentiated by type of attribution, outcome valence, and situational context. The SAS was completed by 464 college students. It was hypothesized that the factor structure would be determined by attribution type and valence, but that situation would not be a significant aspect. Results of factor analysis yielded factors that were defined by attribution type and valence. Only two minor factors were situation specific. These results support the construct of attribution style, at least for hypothetical events. Implications for attribution theory, applications, and future research needs are presented. (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (94th, Washington, DC, August 22-26, 1986).