Communal orientation and attributions between the self and other

Michael McCall, Raymond R. Reno, Nicole Jalbert, Stephen G. West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Prior research has shown that communally oriented interpersonal relationships are governed by other-oriented behaviors that take into account the needs and feelings of a partner. Communal orientation has been manipulated within interactions and has also been measured on a dispositional level. What is not known, however, are the consequences of being dispositionally communally oriented and how interacting with a communally oriented other might influence attributions for success and failure. To examine this issue, undergraduates completed the communal orientation scale and then participated in a joint decision-making task with a randomly assigned partner. Participants then assessed how communally oriented they thought their partner was and received success or failure feedback on the task. Then they were given the opportunity to attribute responsibility for the performance to themselves, their partner, or the relationship. Results indicate that communal orientation and the perception of the degree of communal orientation of the partner contributed to the attribution of responsibility for the performance. These data suggest that communal orientation and a perception of the communal orientation of another affects attributions even in short-term laboratory-based interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-308
Number of pages8
JournalBasic and Applied Social Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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