Costs of helping only influence children's intention to help ethnic out-group peers

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticle

Abstract

Studies show that children are often inclined to help less when the costs of helping increase. However, these studies do not take into account who children are helping. Yet, developmental intergroup research has shown that the intergroup context influences children's reasoning about helping behavior. Two experimental vignette studies are presented that examined the influence of the costs of helping on children's (8-13 years) intention to help in an ethnic intergroup context. Study 1 (N = 320) showed that the costs of helping reduce children's willingness to help ethnic out-group peers but do not influence children's intention to help ethnic in-group peers. Study 2 (N = 166) replicated the results of Study 1 for a different ethnic out-group context. Moreover, children's reduced willingness to help ethnic out-group peers when costs increase was not contingent on their ethnic in-group or out-group evaluation or their age. Taken together, this research shows, for the first time, that the costs of helping reduce children's willingness to help ethnic out-group peers but not ethnic in-group peers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-99
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Experimental Child Psychology
Volume173
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2018

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Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Ethnic Groups
  • Female
  • Helping Behavior
  • Humans
  • Intention
  • Male
  • Peer Group
  • Social Behavior
  • Social Perception

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