Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Ginette C. Blackhart

Committee Members

Jon R. Webb, Stacey L. Williams


It is proposed that differences in rejection attribution could yield variations in subsequent prosocial behavior. To test the attribution hypothesis, 109 participants were randomly assigned to a performance based rejection, a personally based rejection, or a control condition and then worked with an ostensible partner via the Internet to develop uses for a common household item. Prosocial behavior was measured by the number of uses a participant generated (working harder for the team). When generating creative uses, participants in the rejection conditions performed significantly worse than nonrejected participants (F(2,74) = 4.576, p<.05, r2=.11). However, in contradiction to the attribution hypothesis, participants in the 2 rejection conditions did not differ in performance. Explanations for why the rejection attribution hypothesis was not supported are discussed in addition to directions for future research regarding rejection attribution.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.