pro·​so·​cial (ˌ)prō-ˈsō-shəl How to pronounce prosocial (audio)
variants or pro-social
: intended to help or benefit another person or group
The capacity to notice the distress of others, and to be moved by it, can be a critical component of what is called prosocial behavior, actions that benefit others: individuals, groups or society as a whole.Perri Klass
This research implies that toddlers are wired for learning pro-social behaviors, and will develop them if they are modeled in the context of a supportive relationship.Heather Neal
… experiences such as abuse can also prohibit people from acting in prosocial ways.Alia E. Dastagir
also : relating to or promoting behavior that benefits others or society
a prosocial family/group
Prosocial emotions like empathy motivate us to benefit others in our group. Eoin O'Carroll
… quieting fear-related memories is apparently so potent in its prosocial effects—making people friendlier, more compassionate, even more loving—that it underscores how unchecked fear memories can make people antisocial and miserable. Scott A. Small

Examples of prosocial in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Studies have also shown that Holocaust education facilitates the development of students’ tolerance and intolerance, as well as their prosocial behavioral skills. Staff Report, Sun Sentinel, 19 June 2024 That the social might just be a red herring, and that the context is what was driving which critical period was being open, not the sort of prosocial properties of MDMA per se. Quanta Magazine, 6 June 2024 Being so disconnected and suspicious of their neighbors, their communities, and institutions could impact their propensity to cooperate with others and act in prosocial ways. Allie Volpe, Vox, 3 June 2024 Barner suggests systems be consistent across schools with embedding prosocial behaviors — voluntary actions that benefit others — that discourage bullying within the culture. Tony Roberts, Baltimore Sun, 15 Apr. 2024 The vibe enabling these reintegrations into polite company is less prosocial than indifferent. Lili Loofbourow, Washington Post, 8 Apr. 2024 But directing excessive wealth toward prosocial goals—using it to pay for a stronger social safety net and better public resources, to mitigate climate change, or to end hunger—would help everyone feel more secure. Christine Emba, The Atlantic, 1 Apr. 2024 Her research focuses on intergroup cooperation, prosocial behavior, and diversity, equity, and inclusion. Preeti Vani, Fortune, 4 Apr. 2024 For example, humility, self-awareness, self-control, moral sensitivity, social skills, emotional intelligence, kindness, a prosocial and moral orientation, are all more likely to be found in women than men. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, Forbes, 1 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'prosocial.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1911, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of prosocial was in 1911

Dictionary Entries Near prosocial

Cite this Entry

“Prosocial.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

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