Attribution Theory (Summary)

The attribution theory is the theory on how people explain things. One of the best thing about being human is; being able to explain anything. A synonyms of attribution is exclamation. We as humans have a strong need to understand things. If you can influence people and explain what is happened.

  • in my point of view the attribution theory "how do we attach meaning to the others behaviour; this is called attribution theory."
  • for example:  If someone angry because they are bad-tempered or because something bad happened?
  • Attribution theory  is concerned with how and why ordinary people explain events as they do.
  • Heider(1985)  believed that people are native psychologists trying to make sense of the social world. People tend to see cause and effect relationship even where there is none! Heider emphasize that there were two main ideas that he put forward that  become influential.(Internal and External)
    • when we explain the behaviour of the others, we enduring internal attributions. such as personality traits
      • for example : we attribute the behaviour of a person to their naivety or reliability or jealousy.
    • when we try to explain our own behaviour ,we tend to make external attributions, such as situational or environment.
  • Attribution theory has been used to explain the difference in motivation between high and low achievers. According to attribution theory, high achievers will approach rather than avoid tasks related to succeeding because they believe success is due to high ability and effort which they are confident of. Failure is thought to be caused by bad luck or poor a poor exam, i.e. not their fault. Thus, failure doesn't affect their self-esteem but success build pride and confidence. On the other hand, low achievers avoid success-related chores because they tend to (a) doubt their ability or (b) assume success is related to luck or to "who you know" or to other factor beyond their control. Thus, even when successful, it isn't  as rewarding to the low achiever because he/she doesn't feel responsible, i.e. , it doesn't increase his/her pride and confidence.