DOC7 14S UOPX Week 5 Cognitive Empathy and Biases Responses

Question 1:Review the classmates’ posts and respond

Empathy is the ability of a person to identify and comprehend the mental states of other people, and the ability to share others’ feelings. Kerr-Gaffney, Harrison, & Tchanturia (2019), consider empathy as a valuable part of prosocial behavior, social cognition, and cooperation because it enables individuals to respond appropriately and make sense of the behavior of others. Empathy can either be affective or cognitive. Cognitive empathy is the ability to understand and recognize another person’s mental state. Affective empathy refers to the ability to share other people’s feelings in the absence of direct stimulation to oneself. Our society depends on empathy to foster connections and its absence would only mean becoming more disconnected and less effective in our innovation and productivity. Empathy is even more crucial for leaders as it is a critical tool for directing and collaborating with employees and team members. It is crucial to understand the difference between affective and cognitive empathy to know when and how to apply either.

Affective empathy is less important for technical leaders because it can easily interfere with one’s productivity. A leader must understand the team and their feelings and eventually make deductions regarding their work and thoughts but without letting his or her feelings interfere with their goal/mission. Thus as a leader, cognitive empathy is the best form of empathy to practice. Cognitive empathy demands understanding and not sympathy and reciprocation. In the same light, as a professional and a researcher, it is also important to focus more on exercising cognitive empathy instead of affective empathy to avoid developing emotions that can easily create bias on a work’s project or work.


Kerr-Gaffney, J., Harrison, A., & Tchanturia, K. (2019). Cognitive and affective empathy in eating disorders: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 10. doi:10.3389/fpsyt.2019.00102

Questions 2: Review the classmates’ posts and respond to at least one in a minimum of 150 words.?Explain why you agree or disagree. Then, share an example from your professional experience to support your assertions.

Hi Class,

What is your dissertation topic, and how is that topic in alignment with your program of study?

The dissertation topic of choice is to examine the use of a peer support intervention in discharge planning and exit strategies of single adult homeless males. Working in the single adult homeless shelter system, a lack of adequate support services leading to higher recidivism rates was observed. According to Om et al (2022) older homeless adults reported higher incidence of cardiovascular disease, vision problems and reported limited social support from family, friends and acquaintances as well as limited medical or hospital care. The idea of a peer support intervention inquiring of the use of intentional peer support intervention in understanding interpersonal relationships between homeless individuals who are transitioning to permanent housing and support services in retaining housing stability with the help of those who have lived experiences and integrated into a case management model will be studied. Simone (2022) noted many individuals return to the shelter system after they have moved to permanent or supportive housing because they don’t know where to turn for assistance or how to access clinical and supportive services. This study aligns with the Doctor of Health Administration as it looks at establishing policy and program implementation in homeless shelter as a way to help mitigate homelessness. It can inform policy makers on additional supportive and wrap-around services that in homeless shelters as a program service in strategic planning policy to help in the fight to end homelessness.

Which personal biases have you identified in formulating your research plan?

Through formulating my research plan, I have noticed that I have a bias as to what studies I choose to read and review versus all the studies whether they are positive and support my topic or negative and have found this intervention does not work. It is important to remember to report the data and findings as they are revealed without trying to manipulate the data to form the desired outcome. However, as noted by Pannucci et al (2010), some degree of bias is nearly always present in published studies and readers must consider how bias may influence a study’s conclusion. According to Pannucci bias can occur in the planning, data collection, analysis and publication phases of research and reviewers of the literature must consider the degree to which bias was prevented in the proper study design and implementation

How have you mitigated those biases?

As a researcher, it is human nature to wish that all research were positive and supported the topic of choice, however through classroom participation and discussion, it has been observed and learned that not every research study will prove or disprove a study. In reading the conclusions and recommendation of each study, it is found what could be furthered studied and recommendations on how or why additional studies and research should be conducted.

Om, P., Whitehead, L., Vafeas, C., & Towell-Barnard, A. (2022). A qualitative systematic review on the experiences of homelessness among older adults. BMC Geriatrics, 22(1), 363.

Pannucci, C. J., & Wilkins, E. G. (2010). Identifying and avoiding bias in research. Plastic and reconstructive surgery, 126(2), 619–625.

Simone, J. (2022). State of the homeless 2022. Coalition for the Homeless.