Course Schedule - Psychology of Helping


January 26 Introduction

**Readings in bold are required**

Resources for Social Psychology

January 28 Why do we help? Evolutionary perspectives

The evolution of altruism in humans / Off-campus

Evolutionary perspectives on prosocial behavior

Proximal and Distal Causes

Meiosis refresher

Caring for loved ones top priority

WEEK 2    
February 2 Why do we help? Evolutionary perspectives

Multilevel selection theory and major evolutionary transitions

Multilevel selection

Altruistic punishment in humans

Powering up with indirect reciprocity in a large-scale field experiment


Public caning

February 4 Why do we help? Evolutionary perspectives


Tribalism is human nature

Your dog has your back

Why hate the good guy?


February 9 Why do we help? Personal and social perspectives

Intuitive prosociality

Empathy-induced altruistic motivation

The emerging study of positive empathy

Video: Empathy-induced altruism

Empathy-altruism hypothesis: Turning to experiments

Spontaneous giving and calculated greed

February 11

Why do we help? Personal and social perspectives


Property damage and exposure to other people in distress differentially predict prosocial behavior after a natural disaster

Narcissism and self- versus recipient-oriented imagery in charitable giving

Searching for the prosocial personality

Prosocial conformity

Suffering and compassion

Empathy in relationships


February 16 Why do we help? Biological perspectives

The neuroscience of empathy

VIDEO: Mirror neurons

Opiods and social bonding: Effect of naltrexone on feelings of social connection and ventral striatum activity to close others

Oxytocin and the pharmacological dissection of affiliation

Social effects of oxytocin in humans: Context and person matter

Oxytocin selectively improves empathy accuracy

Tryptophan promotes charitable donating

Tryptophan promotes interpersonal trust

Video on research

Hunger games: Fluctuations in blood glucose levels...

Acetaminophen reduces empathy?

February 18 Why do we help? Biological perspectives

The amygdala and helping

A neural link between empathy and helping of strangers


February 23 Why do we help? Developmental perspectives

How infants and toddlers react to antisocial others

Not noble savages after all: Limits to early altruism

Concern for group reputation increases prosociality in young children

5-yr-olds demonstrate bystander effect

5-yr-old helps homeless man

February 25 Why do we help? Developmental perspectives


The social origins of human prosociality

The need to contribute during adolescence

Beyond good and evil: What motivations underlie children's prosocial behavior?

Children understand revenge before reciprocity

Humans' unique turn-taking skills

Children delay gratification for cooperative ends

VIDEO: Shared intentionality

Ingroup love versus outgroup hate

Infants help even when hungry



March 2

What are the consequences of helping?


Prosocial spending and happiness: Using money to benefit others pays off

Giving to others and the association between stress and mortality

When charitable acts are "tainted" by personal gain

"Companies that raise money for schools keep 48% for themselves"

Learning by helping?

March 4 What are the consequences of helping?

The bystander effect: A meta-analytic review...

Does volunteering improve well-being?


March 9
What are the consequences of helping?

The (revised) case of Kitty Genovese

50 years later, the case of Kitty Genovese

Commuters free trapped passenger

Bystanders helping

Technology for people with disabilitites

How bad can throwing away one plastic bottle be? 30 million wonder

March 11

From empathy to apathy: The bystander effect revisited




March 16

When do we help?

The smell of virtue.... / off campus

Are you being served...?

Making it easier to accept help

A meta-analytic review of moral licensing

Self-serving justifications: Doing wrong and feeling moral

March 18 When do we help?


March 23 When do we help?



March 25 When do we help?




March 30 Who helps?


When we are hungry we remain helpful

Helping under time pressure



April 1 Who helps?


Enduring Goodness: A person-by-situation perspective on prosocial behavior


April 6
Love fuels hate: Two sides of the same coin?


Geographical differences in subjective well-being predict extraordinary altruism

Our genes want us to be altruists

World Humanity Summit

April 8


Forms of helping: Time vs. money

Identification with all humanity as a moral concept...

Motivational processes underlying both prejudice and helping / off campus

Displays of care and aggression in response to cute stimuli

Why familiarity breeds contempt

We take care of our own: Caregiving salience increases out-group bias...

Processing fluency

The benefits of processing fluency

Ingroup love and outgroup hate

WEEK 12    
April 13 Forms of helping: Caregiving

The happiness of giving: The time-ask effect

When does familiarity promote versus undermine interpersonal attraction?

Extreme rituals promote prosociality

Time, money, and morality

Ice bucket challenge

The martyrdom effect

Research on giving


April 15 Forms of helping: Caregiving

Caregiving and coping in carers of people with anorexia nervosa

Issues in Dementia caregiving

Volunteerism research


WEEK 13    
April 20 Increasing helping  

Effective helping: Interviewing and counseling techniques

Kidney donor

WEEK 14    
April 27 Increasing helping


"Helping" vs"Being a Helper"

Helping fellow beings: Anthropomorphized social causes...

Long-term relations among prosocial-media use, empathy, and prosocial behavior

Compassion training alters altruism...

Do defaults save lives?

The International Flag of Earth

The Briefcase

Alternatives to The Briefcase

April 29 Increasing helping

Impediments to effective altruism: The role of subjective preferences in charitable giving

Priming Buddhist concepts

Nudging empathy

The effects of playing prosocial video games

500 Questions

Exercising your empathy

WEEK 15    

Is an outgroup member in need a friend indeed?

Increasing intergroup distinctiveness: The benefits of third party helping

Self-affirmation among the poor


The Red Cross' Secret Disaster


Harm to others outweighs harm to self

The identifiable victim bias

The number of fatalities drives disaster aid

Giving help that is needed

Brits won't take free cash

Donating at the register

South Park - donating at register

Homeless people read mean tweets about themselves

Hero dog