Dr. Lewis Lecture

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Psi Chi Research Lectures Series Presents: Dr. Mary Lewis, Department of Psychology, Oakland University

Opportunities for Prosocial Actions: Development of a Multidensional Measure of Prosocial Behavior

The purpose of the present series of studies was to develop the Opportunities for Prosocial Actions Scale (OPAS), which taps different ways that adolescents behave prosocially as a function of relational closeness. Although several measures of prosociality exist, prosocial behavior often is approached as a personality trait which varies by situation or motivation. One context rarely addressed is ways in which adolescents behave toward known, close others versus toward unknown others. Goals for relationships, that is a norm of reciprocity or desire to maintain relationships might be witnessed in the nature and frequency of prosocial actions. In contrast, prosocial behavior toward unknown others might be linked to more altruistic or duty-bound qualities. Three objectives were addressed in the present study. First, we identified everyday prosocial actions in youth and determined whether those instances were part of a single construct of were multidimensional in nature. Second, we examined whether prosocial behavior differed by relational closeness, that is by close relationships (friends and family) versus strangers and acquaintances. Third, we hypothesized that resultant dimensions of prosocial behavior would be related differently to social support, empathy, prosocial tendencies, and religiosity. This event will take place on Tuesday, April 10 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. in the Lake Michigan Room of the Oakland Center. This event is free and open to all OU students. FREE FOOD AND BEVERAGES will be provided to all attendees. Contact Thomas Butler for more information.