The authors are grateful to Isabella Schwyzer for her help in data coding. We also thank the anonymous reviewers for helpful comments on earlier versions of this article.
The Relation of Moral Emotion Attributions to Prosocial and Antisocial Behavior: A Meta-Analysis
Article first published online: 24 SEP 2012
© 2012 The Authors. Child Development © 2012 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.
Volume 84, Issue 2, pages 397–412, March/April 2013
How to Cite
Malti, T. and Krettenauer, T. (2013), The Relation of Moral Emotion Attributions to Prosocial and Antisocial Behavior: A Meta-Analysis. Child Development, 84: 397–412. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2012.01851.x
- Issue published online: 18 MAR 2013
- Article first published online: 24 SEP 2012
This meta-analytic review of 42 studies covering 8,009 participants (ages 4–20) examines the relation of moral emotion attributions to prosocial and antisocial behavior. A significant association is found between moral emotion attributions and prosocial and antisocial behaviors (d = .26, 95% CI [.15, .38]; d = .39, 95% CI [.29, .49]). Effect sizes differ considerably across studies and this heterogeneity is attributed to moderator variables. Specifically, effect sizes for predicted antisocial behavior are larger for self-attributed moral emotions than for emotions attributed to hypothetical story characters. Effect sizes for prosocial and antisocial behaviors are associated with several other study characteristics. Results are discussed with respect to the potential significance of moral emotion attributions for the social behavior of children and adolescents.