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Altruism in Humans$

C. Daniel Batson

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195341065

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195341065.001.0001

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(p.281) Appendix C Tests of the Social-Evaluation Version of the Empathy-Specific-Punishment Hypothesis

(p.281) Appendix C Tests of the Social-Evaluation Version of the Empathy-Specific-Punishment Hypothesis

Source:
Altruism in Humans
Publisher:
Oxford University Press

(p.282)

Study

Participants

Need Situation

Empathy Variable

Cross-cutting Variable

Competing Predictions

Results (by cell)

Conclusion

a. Studies Interpreted as Supporting the Social-Evaluation Version (ESP-Soc)

Archer et al. (1981)

120 female undergraduates (30 per cell in 4-cell design); half in each cell were above and half below the median on a measure of dispositional empathy.

Female master’s student in Education seeking volunteers to participate in her thesis research.

Physiological-arousal feedback manipulation of empathy felt while listening to appeal (low; high). The manipulation appeared effective in inducing empathy only among high dispositional-empathy participants in the aware condition.

Manipulation of experimenter’s awareness of participant’s level of physiological arousal (not aware; aware).

EA predicts as much helping of student in the unaware as in the aware condition among participants given high-arousal feedback. ESP-Soc predicts less helping in the unaware than in the aware condition among participants given high-arousal feedback, and possibly only when dispositional empathy is high.

High arousal led to more help than did low arousal only among high dispositional-empathy participants in the aware condition (exact means were not reported).

EA prediction not supported; ESP-Soc prediction supported, p 〈 .02, but only among high-dispositional empathy participants.

b. Studies Interpreted as Supporting the Empathy-Altruism Hypothesis (EA)

Fultz et al. (1986, Study 1)

22 female under-graduates.

Female undergraduate, Janet, who admitted in note to experiencing extreme loneliness.

Naturally-occurring situational empathy reported after reading note from Janet.

Need presented in way that no one else would know if participant did not help, not experimenter, not even Janet.

EA predicts positive correlation of situational empathy with helping even though no chance for negative social evaluation. ESP-Soc predicts no positive correlation with helping because no chance for negative social evaluation.

Correlation of situational empathy with helping was .68 for dichotomous helping (no help vs. help) and .70 for scaled helping (number of hours).

EA prediction supported, p 〈 .001; ESP-Soc prediction not supported.

Fultz et al. (1986, Study 2)

32 female under-graduates (9 in 2 cells, 7 in 2 cells in 4-cell design).

Female undergraduate, Janet, who admitted in note to experiencing extreme loneliness.

Perspective-taking manipulation (objective; imagine-how-she-feels) while reading note from Janet. Manipulation checked, p 〈 .01. Measure of dispositional empathy also taken.

Need presented in way that both the experimenter and Janet were aware if participant did not help (public) or that neither were aware (private). Manipulation checked, p 〈 .01.

EA predicts more helping in imagine cell than in objective cell both when others aware (public) and when others not aware (private). ESP-Soc predicts more help in imagine cell than in objective cell only when others aware (public).

Mean amount of time offered to spend with Janet:

Public/Objective 0.67

Public/Imagine 1.71

Private/Objective 1.29

Private/Imagine 2.44

(Pattern of results same when controlled for scores on dispositional empathy.)

EA prediction supported, p 〈 .01; ESP-Soc prediction not supported.

(p.283) (p.284)