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Annotated Bibliography

Maaz Ahmad
Alvarez, K., & Leeuwen, E. V. (2015). Paying it forward: How helping others can reduce
the psychological threat of receiving help. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 45(1),
1) The study asked how receiving dependency or autonomy oriented help affects the
perceived self-competence of a subject, and asks how a subjects in turn helping another
affected further affected the same measure. It found that receiving dependency oriented
help resulted in lower self-competence, and helping another afterwards increased selfcompetence.
2) Sample: undergraduates from the University of Amsterdam. Independent
variables: participants were placed in randomly in groups to receive dependency oriented
help and autonomy oriented help. Dependent variables: reported level of selfcompetence.
3) The study suggests that being helped especially in a dependent manner negatively
affects ones self-competence, and in turn helping another may relieve this dip in selfcompetence.
Arieli, S., Grant, A., & Sagiv, L. (2014). Convincing Yourself to Care About Others:An
Intervention for Enhancing Benevolence Values. Journal of Personality, 82(1), 15-24.
1) The study asked whether a digital intervention could increase the benevolence of
a subject. It found that such an intervention can increase their measure of benevolence.
2) Sample: undergraduates students in Israel. Independent variables: participants
were given an intervention highlighting the importance of benevolence (experimental) or
an intervention highlighting the flexibility of personality (control). Dependent variables:
whether the participant signed up to volunteer for an organization.
3) This study shows that a simple intervention showing the importance of
benevolence increases ones intention to volunteer. Instead of an intervention, a direct
example of benevolence (being helped) may have similar results on a participants
Catarino, F., Gilbert, P., Mcewan, K., & Baio, R. (2014). Compassion motivations:
Distinguishing submissive compassion from genuine compassion and its association with
shame, submissive behavior, depression, anxiety and stress. Journal of Social and
Clinical Psychology, 33(5), 399-412.
1) This study asked whether there was a difference between submissive compassion
(helping in order to be liked) and true compassion. It found that submissive compassion
was related to negative self-evaluations, while compassion was not related to negative
self evaluations.
2) Sample: students from the University of Derby. Independent variable: level of
submissive compassion from a questionnaire. Dependent variables: level of submissive
behavior and level of genuine compassion

3) The study suggests that some people help others as a result of negative selfperceptions, and such helping is different from true and genuine compassion. When one
helps another after being helped, it is important to distinguish whether their motivation
was a result of negative self-perceptions or a desire to help another.
Farsides, T., Pettman, D., & Tourle, L. (2013). Inspiring altruism: Reflecting on the
personal relevance of emotionally evocative prosocial media characters. Journal of
Applied Social Psychology, 43(11), 2251-2258.
1) The study asked whether watching media characters act prosocially affected a
subjects intention to act prosocially. It found that such exposure does increase altruistic
2) Sample: high schoolers in Sussex, United Kingdom. Independent variable: the
subjects watched a DVD starring a character who was empathetic and altruistic or a DVD
with a character who was not. Dependent variable: a survey reporting altruistic
3) The finding that watching an example of a media character acting altruistically
resulted in an increase in intent to act altruistically is important because it shows that a
third-person example of altruism increased at least a subjects intention to act
Lefevor, G., & Fowers, B. (2016). Traits, situational factors, and their interactions as
explanations of helping behavior. Personality and Individual Differences.
92(2016), 159-163.
1) The study asked whether personality traits and situational mood affected a
subjects level of altruism. The study found that level of Kindness but not Agreeableness
nor situational mood affected the level of altruism
2) Sample: 121 undergraduate students from a university in south-eastern United
States. Independent variable: sample measuring Big Five personality traits and positive,
neutral, and negatively induced moods. Dependent variable: number of pencils picked up
after a mishap to measure altruism.
3) The finding that ones level of Kindness was the sole predictor of altruistic
behavior (and not positive or negative moods) goes against the hypothesis that being
helped (affecting ones mood) would affect whether they in turn help another.
Leung, K., Deng, H., Wang, Jie,. Zhou, F. (2015). Beyond Risk-Taking: Effects of Psychological
Safety on Cooperative Goal Interdependence and Prosocial Behavior. Group &
Organization Management, 40(1), 88115.
1) The study asked whether an individual's psychological safety affected their
measure of prosocial behavior, especially in relation to their intentions of harmony
enhancement (positive motivation) and disintegration avoidance (negative motivation).
The study found that ones prosocial behavior increased in relation to their psychological
2) Sample: three hundred part-time MBA university students in a Chinese university.
Independent variable: level of psychological safety. Dependent variable: measure of
prosocial behavior as reported by students boss.

3) The finding that ones psychological safety increases the amount of prosocial
behavior is important because being helped by another may decrease such perception of
psychological safety and in turn affect their intent to help another.
Thomas, G., & Batson, C. D. (1981). Effect of helping under normative pressure on selfperceived altruism. Social Psychology Quarterly, 44(2), 127-131.
1) This experiment asked whether being helped or not being helped affected ones
self perception of altruism after helping another person. The study found that those who
were not helped reported a higher self-perceptions of altruism than those who were
2) Sample: undergraduate psychology students at the University of Kansas.
Independent variable: whether or not the subject was helped before the subject helped
another. Dependent variable: reported self-perceptions of altruism.
3) This study is important because it shows that helping as a result of reciprocity
(because one was helped by such a person) affects their reasoning of why they help
another and their self-perception. Therefore, it is important to note that being helped may
induce a subject to help another based on reciprocity rather than true altruism.