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Attribution Theory Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 20 March 2017

Attribution Theory

No creature in this planet can exercise the faculty of reason as much as we human persons do. As rational beings, we normally engage in an array of activities which require critical thinking or thoughtful consideration. At least for those who are fortunate to be gifted with normal bodily functions, it is axiomatic to suppose that we human persons are expected to put reason to everything that we do.

For instance, we do not wake up at two in the morning and prepare to go to school simply for no reason whatsoever. In a manner of speaking, the faculty of human reason allows us to do things on account of some reasonable purposes. The way we make sense or put reason to almost everything that surrounds us makes us, more than anything else, human persons by right of logic and supposition.

            Reading through the article “The Attribution Theory”, I am able to even more affirm the fundamental tendency of human reason to seek for explanation of things. Therein I was able to learn that the theory of Attribution draws from the basic supposition that human reason so naturally tends to seek for explanation to things. This, in many ways, is intricately knitted to the logic underneath the principle of causality, which basically assumes that our minds try hard to grapple for sufficient explanations to help us make sense of everything that happens. The theory of Attribution is no less different in that, like the principle of causality, it too tries to seek for an adequate explanation of things. All things considered, it can enable us to peek into the seemingly insatiable desire of human persons to seek explanation for things.

            Secondly, the article also made me realize how potent, nay, powerful human reason can become. In the article, it cites a number of studies that were done so as demonstrate the efficacy of the theory. The mainline thesis is to show that the theory of Attribution, especially when it is internally reinforced, can produce behavioral changes to a person or groups of persons. The article even notes that when people tend to attribute certain events as directly stemming from their personal involvement, it produces significant behavioral changes.

When for instance, a person is repeatedly introduced to the idea, say, that his or her high grades are attributable to the painstaking but admirable effort he pours into his studies, it creates a personal belief system that appear to cater to such reinforcements. This means that a person who is able to embrace a belief that his or her efforts serve him or her well in the process will normally become motivated to study on his or her own. This displays, more than anything else, the power of human reason to translate personal belief systems into tangible behavioral patterns.

            But reading through the article also made me feel a bit cautious as well. If through the theory of Attribution we can make people “create new attitudes or beliefs or behaviors depending upon the explanation they make”, then it behooves us to proceed with much care in reinforcing beliefs on them (The Attribution Theory). Surely, we cannot allow people to think negatively about themselves, especially on issues which may involve anger, grief, guilt, among others.

As indeed, we cannot let people believe that some tragic moments in life, which can happen beyond our control, are internally attributable to their doings just the same. If we truly want to create an empowered individual by applying the theory of Attribution, then it is only justified that we ought to inculcate positive reinforcements on to everyone so as to create positive avenues for behavioral changes. Along the same vein, we must always help protect people from creating a monster out of internal belief-systems, which, on the final analysis, can eventually, nay only translate to ill-natured and unfortunate behaviors.

Work Cited

“The Theory of Attribution”, SBB: 1996. Retrieved 10 September 2008,             <http://www.as.wvu.edu/~sbb/comm221/chapters/attrib.htm>


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