Pillavin Et Al

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Pillavin Et Al

Pillavin- Good Samaratnism 

Aim: To investigate situational explanation of bystander behaviour 

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Participants

  • 4450
  • Unsolicitated 
  • Men + Women
  • 45% black + 50% white
  • using train between 11am and 3pm
  • 2 month period
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Method

  • Field
  • New york subway
  • 7.5min journey 
  • 103 trials carried out
  • 4 teams of 4 people (2 observers + 1 victim + 1 model)

Conditions: IV

  • Black victim
  • White victim
  • Drunk victim
  • ill Victim
  • Early model (critical/adjacent area)
  • Late model (critical/adjacent area)
  • Bystander number varied naturally 
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Method II

Observers recorded (DV):

  • Time-taken for 1st passenger to help
  • Total number of passengers whom helped
  • gender, race, location of helper
  • time taken for 1st passenger to help after model 

Controls:

  • standardized procedure (model collapsed in same way)
  • victim in each team wore same clothes
  • after each trial confederate got on trains heading in opposite difrections to avoid same passengers
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Results

  • More help given to ill victim
  • Men most often helped (90%)
  • No evidence of diffusion of responsibility 
  • Effect of model difficult to assess
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Conclusions

  • Situational explanation of bystander behaviour 
  • Arousal: cost-reward model-  Heuristic device predicts helping behavour 
  • Emergency situation creates arousal, arousal increased due to: empathy/identification with victim, proximity and length 
  • Arousal reduced by directly or indirectly helping victim, leaving the scene of emergency or rejecting victim
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Evaluation

Strength 

  • high ecological validity
  • demand characteristics unlikely 

Weaknesses 

  • lack of control over environemnt
  • Bias from extraneous variables
  • ethical issues

Uses

  • explaning & predicting human behaviour in an emergency situation in everday life + strong evidence against diffusion of responsibility 


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