Nov 14, 2020 in Health

Attribution Theory

Attribution Theory

This research paper devoted to the inveterate issue of the humane society is called Attribution Theory. This major issue is related to social psychology and is inevitable in the everyday lives of people while trying to understand and perceive all the reasons for the happening of events. This phenomenon of attribution prevents them from destroying the entity of their minds. After enlightening of focal points of attribution theory, this paper will analyze the peer reviewed journal article on the given topic related to attribution theory and its applying into practice. It will also discuss pluses and minuses of the article, the usage of the theory for the research, and make the appropriate conclusions.


Attribution theory is a focal point of social psychology. It was Heider who first offered the theory in 1958, and then Weiner and his coworkers invented the conceptual basis that became the main scientific achievement for social psychology for centuries. Heider was the first who explored naivety and common sense in relation to psychology, thus trying to research peoples efforts to explain the conduct of other people by ascribing them some internal or external reasons. Attribution theory is all about how people are trying to interpret the world around them and events happening there. Therefore, there are several types of attributions. External attributions arise when the outward forces not dependable on a person and internal forces explain situations while peoples actions can be interpreted as emerging from their personal traits of character. Even according to an article about children, According to attribution theory, disease stigma evolves when a disease is seen to be within the individuals control, hence if it is connected rather with internal (behavior and individual) than external (environment) and genetic factors (Sikorski, Luppa, Brahler, Konig, & Riedel-Heller, 2012).

Weiner classified major factors that determine peoples actions, such as luck, complicacy of an assignment, endeavor and capability. Other important things in the paper are 3-causal types of attribution such as the ability to control, stable condition of things and locus of control. Attribution has several stages. First, people observe some situation, then they define the conduct as well considered, and at last, the situation is being interpreted as an internal product or external output.

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The article under review is An Application of Attribution Theory to Clinical Judgment by Jennifer Murray and Mary E. Thompson. The article has an abstract. It represents the appliance of attribution theory into the practice of clinical judgments in order to improve better evaluation and measuring of violence risks. The article also discusses significance of understanding the clients inclination to attribute causality for improvement of efficiency of therapeutical interference. It is also important to know how the clinician can interpret the reasoning for clients behavior and the usage of attribution for progression of therapeutical interference and better projecting managerial plans. The article tells the readers about relevance and practicality of the given study and refers to the thoughts of many scientists in the area such as Elbogen, Heider. For example, it says Elbogen highlights the issue of relevance in researching a process that is so often described as flowed and assumes that enhancement in research activity and practice can be achieved only due to extent comprehension of the issue Murray, & Thompson, 2009). In addition, the article enlightens Heiders explorations of the attribution theory and its application in the real life conditions. First, he defined people as analysts who perceive not only their physical environment but causal features as well. He also established the importance of observed conduct in a tight connection with socially significant reproduction and the object of comprehension. Heider points out that no diagnosis made by a clinician should be based on initial immature judgments because such preconception may lead to the fault inferences.

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One more captivating phenomenon in Heiders researches is constancy. It refers to the expectancies of things as well as moods to be stable and unchanged. Hammond followed the theory of constancy in 1955. Harold Kelley broadened the theory based on Heiders et al. works. He invented the phenomenon of a person, time, and the phenomenon of entity. Then the readers will learn about the consistency in judgments of causality, i.e. is an individuals behavior and/or aspect of the situation constantly present Murray, & Thompson, 2009). Rosenbaum distinguished between intentional and unintentional conduct. Plous explored the influence of attributive behavior on the clinicians advice.

Strengths of the article are that it traces all the history of attribution theory from its inventing by Heider and then to its later development. The competency and completeness of the article is also a plus. It uncovers that judgments of psychotherapists also depend on the attributions and effect evaluation of risks during violent acts happening. The weakness of the article is the fact that it is difficult to refer appropriately to every existing bias or interconnection that influences psychotherapists decision within the paper.

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Heider was the first who invented the attribution theory. It concludes that people judge their own behavior and behavior of other people according to some external or internal factors. The aim of the analyzed paper was to demonstrate how these attributions affect clinicians recommendations, and development of the theory by different psychologists through the time. The paper has some strengths and weaknesses. Nevertheless, it cannot enlighten everything in this article. It uncovers many useful facts and researches about the attribution theory and its application to the evaluation of different risks from violence.


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