Although attributions about others' sad emotions have been shown to be positively related to helping behavior, there have been considerable inconsistencies in the findings. This study was designed to investigate the relations of affective attributions, affective reconciliations, and cognitive perspective-taking measures to prosocial behavior. Eighty-nine preschool through second grade children were administered various social cognition indices (two affective and one cognitive); the children were then given an opportunity to help a same-sex confederate child obtain toys. Helping that required a specific form of affective attribution and reconciliation was significantly related to the affective attribution and reconciliation measures when the demands required by the helping opportunity "matched" the social cognition measure demands. The findings are discussed in terms of the need to reconceptualize the relations between social cognitive skills and helping.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Life-span and Life-course Studies