Title

Prosocial Behavior In Instances of Theft On College Campuses

Poster Number

12

Lead Author Major

Psychology

Second Author Major

Psychology

Format

Poster Presentation

Faculty Mentor Name

Gary Howells

Faculty Mentor Department

Psychology

Abstract/Artist Statement

Prosocial behavior refers to the voluntary efforts one takes in order to benefit another, even when there appears to be no incentive or gain in doing so (Eisenberg, Fabes & Spinrad, 2007). Prosocial behavior can refer to acts as minimal as sharing and volunteering, or as significant as intervening in a violent crime. There may be many factors influencing one’s decision to be prosocial such as the timing and location of the instance, the number of other bystanders, etc. Alternatively, the bystander effect refers to instances when individuals refrain from engaging in prosocial behaviors as a situation presents itself. The question then becomes, how and when does one decide to engage in prosocial behavior? The present study will investigate prosocial behavior of college students on a small university campus in Northern California. Confederates of the study will leave their belongings unattended for another confederate to attempt to steal those belongings in the presence of an unaffiliated bystander. Prosocial behavior will be evaluated in terms of the bystanders’ decision to intervene or not. It is hypothesized that gender will influence one’s decision to engage in prosocial behavior.

Location

Tiger Lounge

Start Date

21-4-2012 10:00 AM

End Date

21-4-2012 12:00 PM

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Apr 21st, 10:00 AM Apr 21st, 12:00 PM

Prosocial Behavior In Instances of Theft On College Campuses

Tiger Lounge

Prosocial behavior refers to the voluntary efforts one takes in order to benefit another, even when there appears to be no incentive or gain in doing so (Eisenberg, Fabes & Spinrad, 2007). Prosocial behavior can refer to acts as minimal as sharing and volunteering, or as significant as intervening in a violent crime. There may be many factors influencing one’s decision to be prosocial such as the timing and location of the instance, the number of other bystanders, etc. Alternatively, the bystander effect refers to instances when individuals refrain from engaging in prosocial behaviors as a situation presents itself. The question then becomes, how and when does one decide to engage in prosocial behavior? The present study will investigate prosocial behavior of college students on a small university campus in Northern California. Confederates of the study will leave their belongings unattended for another confederate to attempt to steal those belongings in the presence of an unaffiliated bystander. Prosocial behavior will be evaluated in terms of the bystanders’ decision to intervene or not. It is hypothesized that gender will influence one’s decision to engage in prosocial behavior.