self serving bias assignment

The next attribution error I want you to investigate is called


Reread the section on Attributions and Attributional Errors (pg 123)

The goal for this assignment is to learn to avoid the self-serving bias when making attributions about your interpersonal behavior.

I want you to recognize and acknowledge that you share responsibility for both the positive and the negative aspects of your personal relationships.

Here’s what you need to do…

  1. Write a paragraph explaining in detail, the self-serving bias.
  2. Choose a relationship that matters to you and list out its (the relationship’s, not the person’s) five most positive and five most negative characteristics.
  3. Next, write out the ways in which:
    • you contribute to the positive aspects of your relationship, and
    • the other person contributes to the negative aspects.
    • you contribute to the negative aspects of the relationship, and
    • the other person contributes to the positive aspects. If you find this task difficult, consider what the other person might say.
  4. TRY IT!!
    • Discuss about a time when you had a problem in this relationship and where (who) you placed the blame. Carefully, consider the role that each of you played in creating the problem. Share the details of this.
    • Let that person know what you are doing for this assignment and credit him or her for the positive aspects of your relationship. In other words, actually tell that person what they do for the relationship that is positive and that you appreciate. Share what happened in your post.
    • Finally, discuss how you think your interpersonal communication might improve when you keep the self-serving bias in check. Do not just write 2 or 3 sentences. Show depth of thought and critical thinking.
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