Miss Russell
1
Thinking Ladder…

To
&
evidence to support and
challenge economic
theories of relationship
maintenance.
To
economic
theori...
How will I know if I am learning?
By the end of the lesson…
E

Will be able to describe studies.

C Will be able to evalua...
 Activity

1) Identify what Rusbult means by
the term ‘investment’ and give examples.
 Activity 2) Describe the procedur...
 Around

the room are a series of studies on
economic theories of relationships.

 You

must choose 4 to make notes on a...
 Mills

and Clark (1980) identified two kinds of
intimate relationship: (a) the communal couple,
where each partner gives...
 Sedikides

(2005) claimed that people are capable
of being unselfish – doing things for others without
expecting anythin...
 Hatfield

(1989) looked at people who felt over-or
under-benefited. The under-benefited felt angry
and deprived, while t...
 Moghaddam

(1998) suggests that such
‘economic’ theories only apply to Western
relationships and even then only to certa...


Research suggests that men and women might judge
the equity of a relationship differently. For example,
Steil and Weltm...




Van Yperen and Buunk (1990) carried out a longitudinal
study using 250 couples recruited by way of an advert
in a lo...
Gottman & Levenson (1992) found that in successful
marriages the ratio of positive to negative
exchanges was around 5:1, h...
Using your table to help you…
Decide how we can evaluate
maintenance theories using
the different prompts.
If you don’t th...
Mills & Clark – Economic theories cannot explain all
relationships. They are not universal to all.
Moghaddam (1998) – Economic theories only apply to
westernised cultures. E.g. students with high social
mobility.
Steil & Weltman (1991) – There are gender differences
in what is judged as equity.
Gottman & Levenson (1992) – Relationships should have more
positive exchanges. This has implications for couple therapy.
B...
Focuses too much on individual’s perspective rather than social
aspects of a relationship such as communication and shared...
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  1. 1. Miss Russell 1
  2. 2. Thinking Ladder… To & evidence to support and challenge economic theories of relationship maintenance. To economic theories using evidence. To economic theories using synoptic AO2 points.
  3. 3. How will I know if I am learning? By the end of the lesson… E Will be able to describe studies. C Will be able to evaluate economic theories using studies. A Will be able to evaluate economic theories using synoptic AO2.
  4. 4.  Activity 1) Identify what Rusbult means by the term ‘investment’ and give examples.  Activity 2) Describe the procedure, findings & conclusion of the study.  Activity 3) Illustrate how abusive relationships are maintained by showing how such a relationship can still be considered profitable to the person being abused.
  5. 5.  Around the room are a series of studies on economic theories of relationships.  You must choose 4 to make notes on and fill out your grid. – What is the study? Describe it. – What does the study suggest? Which theory does it support or challenge? – Is there anything wrong with the study? Is it up for debate? Can you evaluate it in terms of AO3 methods?
  6. 6.  Mills and Clark (1980) identified two kinds of intimate relationship: (a) the communal couple, where each partner gives out of concern for the other; (b) the exchange couple, where each keeps mental records of who is ‘ ahead’ and who is ‘behind’. This indicates that there are different types of relationships and that SET can be applied to some of them, but not universally to all.
  7. 7.  Sedikides (2005) claimed that people are capable of being unselfish – doing things for others without expecting anything in return – most evident in relationships with those emotionally closest to us. Sedikides believed that individuals can bolster their partners’ self-systems when they are faced with failure and other stressful life events. Therefore, the view of humans as being out for what they can get is simplistic and inaccurate.
  8. 8.  Hatfield (1989) looked at people who felt over-or under-benefited. The under-benefited felt angry and deprived, while the over-benefited felt guilty and uncomfortable, supporting the theory by suggesting that regardless of whether individuals are benefited, they do not desire to maintain a relationship that is not fair.
  9. 9.  Moghaddam (1998) suggests that such ‘economic’ theories only apply to Western relationships and even then only to certain shortterm relationships among individuals with high mobility. One group of people who fit this description are students in Western societies. They are typically very mobile and experience many short-term romantic relationships. Where there is little time to develop long-term commitment, it makes sense to be concerned with give-and-take. However, long-term relationships within other less mobile population groups, particularly in nontraditional societies, are more likely to value security than personal profit.
  10. 10.  Research suggests that men and women might judge the equity of a relationship differently. For example, Steil and Weltman (1991) found that, among married working couples, husbands who earned more than their wives rates their own careers as more important than their wives’ careers. In such couples the women generally also rated their husbands’ careers as more important than their own. However, in couples where the women’s income exceeded the man’s, neither partner rated their career as more important. Researchers concluded that: ‘wives’ tendency to seek less for themselves than comparable men making comparable contributions… impeded the achievement of equality at home’.
  11. 11.   Van Yperen and Buunk (1990) carried out a longitudinal study using 250 couples recruited by way of an advert in a local paper. Eighty-six per cent were married and the remainder were cohabiting. They obtained a score for equity in the relationship using Hatfield’s Global Measurement of Satisfaction (Hatfield et al., 1990) and found that about 65 per cent of men and women felt that their relationship was equitable, about 25 per cent of men felt over-benefited, and about the same number of women felt under-benefited. One year later the couples were asked about satisfaction in their relationship. Those who felt their relationship was equitable at stage 1 were the most satisfied, the over-benefited were next and the underbenefited were least satisfied, supporting the equity theory.
  12. 12. Gottman & Levenson (1992) found that in successful marriages the ratio of positive to negative exchanges was around 5:1, however in unsuccessful marriages this ratio was lower at 1:1. This suggests that relationships should have more positive exchanges and less negative exchanges.
  13. 13. Using your table to help you… Decide how we can evaluate maintenance theories using the different prompts. If you don’t think a prompt is a relevant evaluation point… then it! Make sure you think about why!
  14. 14. Mills & Clark – Economic theories cannot explain all relationships. They are not universal to all.
  15. 15. Moghaddam (1998) – Economic theories only apply to westernised cultures. E.g. students with high social mobility.
  16. 16. Steil & Weltman (1991) – There are gender differences in what is judged as equity.
  17. 17. Gottman & Levenson (1992) – Relationships should have more positive exchanges. This has implications for couple therapy. Behavioural Couple’s therapy helps them to break negative patterns.
  18. 18. Focuses too much on individual’s perspective rather than social aspects of a relationship such as communication and shared events. Too much focus on selfish nature of people! Are people really that selfish?

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