The Role of Persons and Situations in Lay Predictions of Behavior

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Kristin M. Saunders (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Verne R. Bacharach

Abstract: The present study examines the degree to which different kinds of information guide behavioral predictions, the kind of information that people believe is relevant to behavioral predictions, and the individual differences associated with the perception and use of specific kinds of information used by people when they make such predictions. One hundred and fourteen participants completed the Attributional Complexity Scale (ACS), California Adult Q-Sort (CAQ), and the Self-Monitoring Scale (SM) and made behavioral predictions for scenarios describing a person (e.g., anxious vs. relaxed) in some situation (e.g.,interview vs. chatting with friend). For each scenario, the degree to which each participant’s predictions were made by using either dispositional, situational, or interactional information was determined. Predictions were more strongly associated with dispositional distinctions, but the use of situational information was also apparent. In sum, the Behavioral Prediction Assessment (BPA) tool gives a reliable measure of individual differences in which people form predictions about others’ social behaviors. Future research might evaluate the meaning of these differences and their links to predictive accuracy.

Additional Information

Saunders, K.M. (2010). The Role of Persons and Situations in Lay Predictions of Behavior. Unpublished master's thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2010
Attribution theory, personality psychology, situation, behavioral, prediction

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