Kelleys Covariation Theory In

attempting to answer the question what makes people attribute a behavior to internal versus external factors, the American social psychologist Harold H. Kelley (1921- ) speculates that people use a principle of covariation in interpreting other's behaviors. The covariation principle is the tendency to ascribe behavior to a cause that is present only when the behavior occurs, or that is observed to vary over time with the behavior. Thus, in this context, one should observe what potential causes are present or absent when a behavior does and doesn't occur, and draw conclusions accordingly. Kelley's theory focuses on the use of three variables or types of information in deciding whether to make internal or external attributions: consistency (the degree to which one reacts to an event in the same way on many different occasions), distinctiveness (the degree to which one does not react the same way to different events), and consensus (the degree to which others react to an event in the same way as the person who is being observed). Theoretically, each of the three variables may be judged to be high or low, resulting in eight possible combinations, often portrayed as a 2X2X2 cube (called Kelley's cube model/theory, or Kelley"s ANOVA model). According to Kelley's approach, persons tend to attribute behavior to internal or disposi-tional causes within another person when consensus is low, distinctiveness is low, and consistency is high. On the other hand, Kel-ley's theory predicts that persons tend to attribute behavior to external or situational causes when consensus is high, distinctiveness is high, and consistency is low. See also ATTRIBUTION THEORY; CORRESPONDENCE BIAS HYPOTHESIS. REFERENCES

Kelley, H. H. (1967). Attribution theory in social psychology. In D. Levine (Ed.), Nebraska symposium on motivation (pp. 192-328). Lincoln, NB: University of Nebraska Press.

Kelley, H. H. (1972). Attribution in social interaction. In E. E. Jones, D. E. Kanouse, H. H. Kelley, R. E. Nis-bett, S. Valiens, & B. Weiner (Eds.), Attribution: Perceiving the causes of behavior. Morristown, NJ: General Learning Press.

Brain Training Improving Your Memory

Brain Training Improving Your Memory

For as much as we believe we train our brains and give them a good workout, we seldom actually do it on a regular basis. In most cases, our brains are not used in a balanced way. We're creatures of habit. We find a way to do things that we consider comfortable and we seldom change our ways.

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment