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Thesis (M.S.)

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This experiment examined the effect on helping behavior of perceived self -competence to perform the helping acts. The effect of the presence of others on helping was also tested. A main effect of Competence and a Competence x Co-presence interaction were predicted for the 2x2 design. Sixty-four male Ss were trained to feel either Competent or Incompetent at a task. They v;ere then exposed to a confederate "subject" having trouble with the task, and were led to believe they were Alone with the confederate, or in the presence of an Audience. Measures of actual helping were taken. Main effects of Competence and Co-presence were found, although they did not reach the .05 level of significance. No interaction was found.