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4. Help-Seeking: The Threat to Self-Esteem Model
About this Lecture
In this module, we think about early research within social psychology that explored the topic of help-seeking. We note that it was not until the 1970s that researchers began to look in more detail at the circumstances and motivations of the help-seeker and explore Fisher et al.’s Threat to Self-Esteem Model (1978) as a significant development in this area. We examine how this model allows us to understand help-seeking behaviour as an act in which the benefits to the help-seeker are weighed up against possible costs, such as reputational damage or stigmatisation. Finally, we look at a number of other factors that have been found to impact help-seeking in later research, including characteristics relating to the helper, the help-recipient and situational variables.
In this course, Dr Juliet Wakefield (Nottingham Trent University) explores the social psychology of helping and help-seeking. In the first lecture, we are introduced to the topics of helping and help-seeking. In the second lecture, we think about early research into helping behaviour, with a particular focus on the case of Kitty Genovese and its influence on the development of Darley and Latané’s Bystander Effect theory. In the third lecture, we consider later research into helping behaviour which was informed by Tajfel and Turner’s social identity approach. Next, we move on to think about help-seeking and help-receiving, focusing on the Threat to Self-Esteem Model. In the fifth lecture, we think about the importance of group memberships for helping transactions. In the sixth and final lecture, we conclude on the course with a summary of key points.
Dr Juliet Wakefield is a senior lecturer in the Department of Psychology at Nottingham Trent University. Dr Wakefield is a member of the Groups, Identities, and Health research group and has research interests in the social identity approach and implications of group membership. Some of Dr Wakefield’s recent publications include ‘Communities as conduits of harm: a social identity analysis of appraisal, coping and justice-seeking in response to historic collective victimisation’ (2022) and ‘The link between family identification, loneliness, and symptom severity in people with eating disorders’ (2022).
Cite this Lecture
Wakefield, J. (2020, March 23). Social Influence – Helping and Help-Seeking - Help-Seeking: The Threat to Self-Esteem Model [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/helping-and-help-seeking/help-seeking-the-threat-to-self-esteem-model
Wakefield, J. "Social Influence – Helping and Help-Seeking – Help-Seeking: The Threat to Self-Esteem Model." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 23 Mar 2020, https://www.massolit.io/courses/helping-and-help-seeking/help-seeking-the-threat-to-self-esteem-model