Social Exchange Theory

Social Theories
Social Exchange Theory
What is Social Exchange Theory?
 Psychological
and Sociological
perspective that explains social change and
stability as a process of negotiated
exchanges between parties.
Views that all human relationships are
formed by the use of a cost-benefit
analysis and the comparison of alternatives.
Social Exchange Theory (cont’d)
 Social
interaction is likened to transactions
in the economic marketplace
 Exchange
is a theory which attempts to
explain interpersonal behaviors in terms of
the exchange of rewards and costs
Interrelated Theories
 Economics
Humans are rational and will seek to maximize their gain
 Psychology
Humans will generate behaviours that will produce the greatest rewards
 Cultural
Exchange process derive from individuals trying to satisfy basic needs.
Social Exchange Theory Today
 focus
on what people put into relationships
and what they get out of it
 everything
we do has costs (to be
minimized) and rewards (to be maximized)
Social Exchange Theory Today
= anything that a person gains
from a relation
6 main rewards: love, money, status, info, goods, services
= negative consequences of a
time, energy
How can this be related to the
 Marital
 Sibling
 Parent/Child
Mom says you have to babysit
me tonight !!!!! And hang out with
me, and play games with me, and
love me and blah blah blah….
What are the COSTS for the sister
to babysit her brother?
What are the REWARDS?
Is babysitting her brother worth it
for her?