Operational definitions are definitions of concepts that are defined in terms of measurements or specific procedures to measure them. This is used to insure precision and accuracy when measuring a particular concept or variable. In psychology, operational definitions can help further develop theories and research as well as aid in understanding behavior more clearly. The concept of helping behavior is often seen differently between men and women, so developing two operational definitions for the concept allows us to examine this difference while ensuring accuracy in measurement.
Develop two operational definitions for the concept of helping behavior, one that emphasizes the “male style” and the other the “female style.”
The “male style” of helping behavior can be operationally defined as assisting someone with a task that requires physical strength, such as moving heavy objects or providing transportation. It involves doing something practical which requires physical exertion, carrying out an action that helps another person directly or indirectly, usually with tangible results (Aderman & Rappaport, 1988). It is not necessarily emotionally driven like its “female style” counterpart but rather focused on taking action and getting things done instead. An example would be a man helping his friend move furniture by lifting it into the truck without expecting anything in return besides camaraderie from his friend.
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