Assessing Empathy by Elizabeth SegalAssessing Empathy by Elizabeth Segal

Assessing Empathy

byElizabeth Segal, Karen Gerdes, Cynthia Lietz

Hardcover | February 28, 2017

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Empathy is a widely used term, but it is also difficult to define. In recent years, the field of cognitive neuroscience has made impressive strides in identifying neural networks in the brain related to or triggered by empathy. Still, what exactly do we mean when we say that someone has-or lacks-empathy? How is empathy distinguished from sympathy or pity? And is society truly suffering from an "empathy deficit," as some experts have charged??

In Assessing Empathy, Elizabeth A. Segal and colleagues marshal years of research to present a comprehensive definition of empathy, one that links neuroscientific evidence to human service practice. The book begins with a discussion of our current understanding of empathy in neurological, biological, and behavioral terms. The authors explain why empathy is important on both the individual and societal levels. They then introduce the concepts of interpersonal empathy and social empathy, and how these processes can interrelate or operate separately. Finally, they examine the weaknesses of extant empathy assessments before introducing three new, validated measures: the Empathy Assessment Index, the Social Empathy Index, and the Interpersonal and Social Empathy Index.

Elizabeth A. Segal is a professor in the School of Social Work at Arizona State University. She is the author of Social Welfare Policy and Social Programs: A Values Perspective, fourth edition (2016) and a co-author of An Introduction to the Profession of Social Work: Becoming a Change Agent, fifth edition (2016).Karen E. Gerdes is pr...
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Title:Assessing EmpathyFormat:HardcoverDimensions:192 pagesPublished:February 28, 2017Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231181906

ISBN - 13:9780231181907

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Table of Contents

1. What Is Empathy?2. The Building Blocks of Empathy3. Why Is Empathy Important?4. Why Is Empathy So Difficult to Achieve?5. Linking Interpersonal and Social Empathy6. Tools for Measuring and Assessing EmpathyAppendix A. Research and Statistical Analysis of the Relationship Between Interpersonal Empathy and Social EmpathyAppendix B. Empathy Assessment IndexAppendix C. Social Empathy IndexAppendix D. Interpersonal and Social Empathy IndexAppendix E. Spanish Translation of the Empathy Assessment Index, the Social Empathy Index, and the Interpersonal and Social Empathy Index, by David Becerra and María del Rosario Silva ArciniegaReferencesIndex

Editorial Reviews

How do we enhance people's capacity to care about others? This volume beautifully integrates the current state of knowledge regarding empathy from neurobiological, psychological, bio-social and social justice perspectives, and offers both the rationale and the tools to begin answering that important question.