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ERIC Number: EJ791830
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-May
Pages: 24
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0022-0965
Adolescents' Emotion Attributions and Expectations of Behavior in Situations Involving Moral Conflict
Saelen, Cecile; Markovits, Henry
Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, v100 n1 p53-76 May 2008
This study examined the idea that expectations of behavior in hypothetical situations involving potential moral transgressions are related to emotion attributions relating to both moral and cost-benefit considerations. We asked younger (14 years 5 months) and older (16 years 1 month) female and male adolescents (a) to make predictions about the probability that an adolescent placed in a hypothetical situation where a payoff could be obtained by acting in a nonmoral way would choose to do so and (b) to evaluate adolescents' attributions of moral (guilt) and cost-benefit-related emotions (satisfaction and fear) to the nonmoral action. Two different situations were examined; one looked at the possibility of stealing money from a lost wallet, and the other examined a situation where a contract with another peer could be broken for personal reasons. Results showed that expectations that the nonmoral action would be taken were positively related to the degree of satisfaction and negatively related to the degree of guilt and fear. However, the pattern of relations between emotion attributions and behavioral expectations differed between the two situations. Female and male adolescents had different levels of emotion attributions and behavioral expectations, but the relation between the two was similar for both. Finally, developmental comparisons indicated that older adolescents put more weight on guilt and were more internally consistent in the way that emotions were integrated into behavioral expectations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A