Today's college kids lack empathy
Compared to 30 years ago, it's all about me now, study finds
College students today are less likely to "get" the emotions of others than their counterparts 20 and 30 years ago, a new review study suggests.
Specifically, today's students scored 40 percent lower on a measure of empathy than their elders did.
The findings are based on a review of 72 studies of 14,000 American college students overall conducted between 1979 and 2009.
...Compared with college students of the late 1970s, current students are less likely to agree with statements such as "I sometimes try to understand my friends better by imagining how things look from their perspective," and "I often have tender, concerned feelings for people less fortunate than me."
"Many people see the current group of college students — sometimes called 'Generation Me ' — as one of the most self-centered, narcissistic, competitive, confident and individualistic in recent history," said Konrath, who is also affiliated with the University of Rochester Department of Psychiatry.
Konrath's colleague graduate student Edward O'Brien added, "It's not surprising that this growing emphasis on the self is accompanied by a corresponding devaluation of others.”
..."College students today may be so busy worrying about themselves and their own issues that they don't have time to spend empathizing with others, or at least perceive such time to be limited," O'Brien said.