Date of Award

12-1-2014

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Etcheverry, Paul

Abstract

The current research examined the effects of the cost of sharing information and individual levels of agreeableness on participants' willingness to help out-of-the-loop individuals. In this study, 119 students from undergraduate psychology courses played the role of a CEO of a pharmaceutical company with three regional managers under their supervision. The participants were given the opportunity to give any number of facts to both in-the-loop managers and the single out-of-the-loop manager. Participants in the high-cost condition were informed that they would be required to spend an additional 2 minutes in the lab explaining the usefulness of the facts distributed for every fact they gave a general manager. Participants in the low-cost condition were told they would be required to spend an additional 10 seconds for each fact they gave a regional manager. After distributing facts among the three regional managers under their supervision, the participants were asked to complete an agreeableness scale, a conscientiousness scale, a needs assessment, and a demographics questionnaire. The results indicated that only the amount of time it would cost an individual to share facts dictated how many facts they would share. The results also found that neither condition nor individual level of agreeableness significantly influenced the difference between the number of facts individuals gave to out-of-the-loop individuals versus in-the-loop individuals.

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