Social Psychology Theories to Explain Behavior
In Week 2, you were introduced to the bystander effect (Darley & LatanÃ©, 1968). The perceived diffusion of responsibility makes bystanders less likely to intervene in an emergency situation. It might be tempting to assume that aggressors and the bystanders who do nothing to intervene are just â€œbadâ€ people; however, the reasons for how and why these behaviors occur are much more complex. In this assignment, you will consider how factors such as obedience to authority, perceived power, and diffused responsibility in the presence of others may explain varied responses to potential or actual harm to others.
Darley, J.M. & LatanÃ©, B. (1968). Bystander interview in emergencies: Diffusion of responsibility. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 8(4), 377-383.
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