Trait empathy is a social skill enabling the individual to share and understand another person’s feelings while maintaining self-other awareness (Cohen & Strayer, 1996; Decety & Jackson, 2004). Developing empathic skills is fundamental for psychotherapists (Elliott, Bohart, Watson & Greenberg, 2011). In Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) patients’ perceptions of therapeutic empathy was positively correlated with improvement during individual cognitive therapy sessions (Persons & Burns, 1985). Several measures have been proposed for measuring trait empathy, for example the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI; Davis, 1980; 1983), the Balanced Emotional Empathy Scale (BEES; Mehrabian, 1996), and the Empathic Quotient (EQ; Baron-Cohen & Wheelwright, 2004). Nevertheless, these scales often failed to distinguish empathy from other correlated constructs such as sympathy or mentalising, and their construct validity was dubious (Albiero, Ingoglia & Lo Coco, 2006; Muncer & Ling, 2006). The Feeling With Others Project (FWOP) aims to develop a new measure of trait empathy and to investigate its psychometric properties. For this purpose, we focused on empathy in its strict definition of «feeling with others», a social process characterised by both the sharing of others’ affective states and the awareness that the source of these shared affective states is the other individual, supporting an intuitive or pre-reflective understanding of others’ feelings.

The «Feeling with others» project: Development of a new measure of trait empathy

EBISCH, Sjoerd Johannes;SAGGINO, ARISTIDE;
2015

Abstract

Trait empathy is a social skill enabling the individual to share and understand another person’s feelings while maintaining self-other awareness (Cohen & Strayer, 1996; Decety & Jackson, 2004). Developing empathic skills is fundamental for psychotherapists (Elliott, Bohart, Watson & Greenberg, 2011). In Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) patients’ perceptions of therapeutic empathy was positively correlated with improvement during individual cognitive therapy sessions (Persons & Burns, 1985). Several measures have been proposed for measuring trait empathy, for example the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI; Davis, 1980; 1983), the Balanced Emotional Empathy Scale (BEES; Mehrabian, 1996), and the Empathic Quotient (EQ; Baron-Cohen & Wheelwright, 2004). Nevertheless, these scales often failed to distinguish empathy from other correlated constructs such as sympathy or mentalising, and their construct validity was dubious (Albiero, Ingoglia & Lo Coco, 2006; Muncer & Ling, 2006). The Feeling With Others Project (FWOP) aims to develop a new measure of trait empathy and to investigate its psychometric properties. For this purpose, we focused on empathy in its strict definition of «feeling with others», a social process characterised by both the sharing of others’ affective states and the awareness that the source of these shared affective states is the other individual, supporting an intuitive or pre-reflective understanding of others’ feelings.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11564/678654
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