Factors affecting Prosocial and Antisocial Decision-Making and Behavior in College Students
Gloria Leventhal, Ph.D.

Prosocial and antisocial scenarios were presented to 25 male and 72 female undergraduates, who rated likelihood of engaging in described behavior and perceived “goodness/badness”. Results indicated a) Females more likely to act in prosocial manner for self-benefit; males more likely to act when there was risk; b) Females less likely to act in antisocial manner for others; males more likely to act for benefit of others, less likely to act for self; c) Females rated prosocial self-benefit behavior “most good”; males rated risky prosocial behavior “most good.” d) Differences were found for likelihood of behavior and morality rating for lying, stealing,and cheating. In examining the significant relationship between likelihood and “good/bad”, a) Prosocial behavior: perceived “goodness” accounted for 33% of the variance in likelihood of acting for self-gain, 12% of the variance where there was risk;. b) Antisocial behavior: perceived “badness” accounted for 14% of the variance in likelihood of acting for others, 7% of the variance for oneself, 6% of the variance to help self/hurt others. Further research is needed to quantify a measure of the perceived moral value of different behavior for different populations, as well as to examine the critical factors involved in prosocial and antisocial decision-making and behavior.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jpbs.v8n1a7