Social Psychology

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An overview of Social Psychology for a General Psychology class.

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Social Psychology

  1. 2. Social Psychology
  2. 3. Main Concern of Social Psychologists <ul><li>Human Beings as Social Animals </li></ul><ul><li>How are the thoughts, feelings, & behaviors of one person influenced by real, imagined, or inferred behaviors of others? </li></ul><ul><li>Topics Include : </li></ul><ul><li>Social forces & the perception of people & things </li></ul><ul><li>The formation & adherence to beliefs and opinions </li></ul><ul><li>Group behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Like, dislike, & love </li></ul><ul><li>Prosocial, antisocial & aggressive behavior </li></ul>
  3. 4. Important Concepts <ul><li>Social Influence – when your behavior is affected by the behavior of another person or group. </li></ul><ul><li>Norms – social standards adhered to by a group or society: the status quo. </li></ul><ul><li>Assumed Similarity Bias – the tendency to think of people as similar to oneself, even at the first meeting. </li></ul><ul><li>Social Learning Theory – children will imitate and model their parents, other adults, and peers to produce their own attitudes and behaviors. </li></ul><ul><li>Attitude – learned evaluation of a person, behavior, belief, or thing. </li></ul><ul><li>Dispositional Causes of Behavior – a perceived cause of behavior based on internal traits or personality factors. </li></ul><ul><li>Diffusion of Responsibility – tendency for people to feel responsibility for acting is shared among those present. </li></ul>
  4. 5. Forming Impressions <ul><li>Schemata </li></ul><ul><li>Beliefs & expectations based on past experiences that are generalized to all members of a group. </li></ul><ul><li>Reliance on schemata can speed up information processing in the social world. </li></ul><ul><li>It allows for predictability. </li></ul><ul><li>It aids in encoding & recall of a person & information. </li></ul>What's your 1st impression of this man?
  5. 6. The Primary Effect <ul><li>The First Impression </li></ul><ul><li>Earlier information about a person carries more weight. </li></ul><ul><li>The 1 st Impression tends to last. </li></ul><ul><li>The “Halo Effect” </li></ul><ul><li>When the 1 st impression is very positive, we tend to see the person in the most positive light only. </li></ul><ul><li>What is your immediate impression of this girl? </li></ul><ul><li>Who do you have a more favorable impression of; the girl above or these beauty queens? </li></ul>
  6. 7. Maintaining Impressions <ul><li>The Self-fulfilling Prophecy </li></ul><ul><li>When your expectations about another elicit behaviors confirming those expectations . </li></ul><ul><li>It is an expectation that helps bring about the outcome that is expected. </li></ul><ul><li>This biases personal behavior . </li></ul><ul><li>Stereotypes </li></ul><ul><li>They are sets of characteristics assumed to be shared by all of the members of a particular group. </li></ul><ul><li>Stereotypes are generalizations. </li></ul><ul><li>They may involve any distinguishing feature (e.g. age, sex, race, occupation, residence, religion, etc.) </li></ul>
  7. 8. Maintaining Relationships
  8. 9. Attribution <ul><li>Making judgments about the causes of behavior </li></ul><ul><li>2 factors to explain behavior: </li></ul><ul><li>Internal (personal factors) </li></ul><ul><li>External (situational factors) </li></ul><ul><li>3 kinds of information that help us assign causality: </li></ul><ul><li>Uniqueness of the circumstances </li></ul><ul><li>Consistency from situation to situation </li></ul><ul><li>Others acting the same way </li></ul>
  9. 10. Attribution Biases <ul><li>The Correspondence Bias (The Fundamental Attribution Error) </li></ul><ul><li>Overestimating the dispositional causes of another’s behavior. </li></ul><ul><li>Failure to take into account the effects of the situation. </li></ul><ul><li>Another’s behavior is caused by internal factors . </li></ul><ul><li>The Actor-Observer Bias </li></ul><ul><li>Tending to explain others’ behavior as having an internal cause while your own has an external cause . </li></ul><ul><li>Defensive Attribution Bias </li></ul><ul><li>Your successes are attributed to internal causes , while your failures have an external cause . </li></ul><ul><li>The “Just World” Hypothesis </li></ul><ul><li>“ Karma ” </li></ul><ul><li>Good things happen to good people while bad things happen to bad people. </li></ul>
  10. 11. Interpersonal Attraction <ul><li>Social and psychological reasons for attraction </li></ul><ul><li>Attractors </li></ul><ul><li>Physical Attractiveness </li></ul><ul><li>The #1 Attractant </li></ul><ul><li>The “Halo Effect” </li></ul><ul><li>Similarity </li></ul><ul><li>Favor Similarity </li></ul><ul><li>Incidental Similarities & Assumed Similarities vs. True Similarities </li></ul><ul><li>Proximity </li></ul><ul><li>The closer people live together, the better chance of attraction. </li></ul><ul><li>Exchange </li></ul><ul><li>We’re attracted to people we get praise from & whom we praise. </li></ul><ul><li>Intimacy </li></ul><ul><li>Self-disclosure, Reciprocity, & Trust are important. </li></ul>
  11. 12. Cognitive Dissonance <ul><li>The unpleasant state when 2 thoughts or a thought & behavior are incongruent. </li></ul><ul><li>In order to satisfy the emotions, a change must be made in one of the 2. </li></ul>
  12. 13. Attitudes <ul><li>Learned evaluative reactions toward something or someone </li></ul><ul><li>Always involve prejudging </li></ul><ul><li>3 Components of an attitude: </li></ul><ul><li>Thoughts toward the object </li></ul><ul><li>Feelings about the object </li></ul><ul><li>Behaviors toward or away from the object </li></ul><ul><li>What do our attitudes say about this man? </li></ul><ul><li>Which of the 2 women is the chemical engineer? </li></ul>
  13. 14. Prejudice & Discrimination <ul><li>Prejudice </li></ul><ul><li>Unfair, intolerant, or unfavorable attitude toward a group. </li></ul><ul><li>It is based on assumed differences. </li></ul><ul><li>Discrimination </li></ul><ul><li>Unfair behavior toward a group. </li></ul><ul><li>Discrimination generally follows prejudice . </li></ul>
  14. 15. Sources of Prejudice <ul><li>Frustration-Aggression Hypothesis </li></ul><ul><li>When goals are thwarted, frustration results & anger can become displaced. </li></ul><ul><li>An Authoritarian Personality </li></ul><ul><li>They favor rules & tradition & are hostile toward those who defy the norms. </li></ul><ul><li>Oversimplification or Overgeneralization </li></ul><ul><li>It’s an attempt to organize social thinking & the social world as much as possible. </li></ul><ul><li>Psychological </li></ul><ul><li>Low Self-Esteem </li></ul><ul><li>Anxiety </li></ul><ul><li>Insecurity </li></ul><ul><li>Social </li></ul><ul><li>Groupthink </li></ul><ul><li>Conformity </li></ul><ul><li>Parental Messages </li></ul><ul><li>Social Messages (Ads, the Media, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Economic </li></ul><ul><li>Majority’s Desire to Preserve the Status Quo </li></ul><ul><li>Competition for Jobs, Power, and Resources </li></ul><ul><li>Cultural </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnocentricism </li></ul><ul><li>Desire for Group Identity </li></ul><ul><li>The Justification for War </li></ul>
  15. 16. Sources of Prejudice <ul><li>Racism </li></ul><ul><li>Viewing certain racial or ethnic groups as innately inferior. </li></ul><ul><li>Leads to either/or thinking (in-group vs. out-group/us vs. them). </li></ul><ul><li>How is the ego defense of projection related to racism? </li></ul><ul><li>Reducing Prejudice </li></ul><ul><li>The contact hypothesis: </li></ul><ul><li>Members of opposing groups must have equal status. </li></ul><ul><li>One-on-one contact is necessary. </li></ul><ul><li>Cooperation instead of competition. </li></ul><ul><li>Social norms should encourage contact. </li></ul>
  16. 17. Persuasion <ul><li>The Communication Model of Persuasion </li></ul><ul><li>1. The credibility of the source </li></ul><ul><li>2. The message </li></ul><ul><li>3. The way the message is presented </li></ul><ul><li>4. The audience </li></ul><ul><li>The Process of Persuasion </li></ul><ul><li>To be persuaded you must: </li></ul><ul><li>1. Pay attention to the message; </li></ul><ul><li>2. Understand the message; </li></ul><ul><li>3. Accept the message. </li></ul>
  17. 18. Conformity <ul><li>The tendency to adjust your behavior to actual or perceived social pressures. </li></ul><ul><li>This will be done even at the expense of personal preferences. </li></ul><ul><li>There are subtle pressures to conform in every society or group. </li></ul><ul><li>Cultural norms will influence conformity. </li></ul><ul><li>Asch conformity studies. </li></ul>
  18. 19. Obedience <ul><li>Compliance with commands or orders issued by others, usually persons in a position of authority. </li></ul><ul><li>Milgram found that people will obey even if it means hurting others. </li></ul>
  19. 20. Conditions Which Strengthen Obedience <ul><li>People will obey under the following conditions: </li></ul><ul><li>1. The person giving the orders was close at hand & was perceived to be a legitimate authority figure. </li></ul><ul><li>2. The authority figure was supported by a prestigious institution or agency. </li></ul><ul><li>3. The victim was depersonalized or at a distance even in another room. </li></ul><ul><li>4. There were no role models for defiance; that is, no other subjects were seen disobeying the person giving the orders. </li></ul>
  20. 21. Compliance <ul><li>The Tendency to Accede to the Request or Demands of Others </li></ul><ul><li>Techniques that Enforce Compliance </li></ul><ul><li>Foot-in-the-door technique </li></ul><ul><li>Granting a small request increases the chance of a larger one being granted. </li></ul><ul><li>Low-ball technique </li></ul><ul><li>Induce a person to agree to something then raise the cost of the compliance. </li></ul><ul><li>Door-in-the-face technique </li></ul><ul><li>If one request is denied, another may be agreed to. </li></ul>
  21. 22. Social Action <ul><li>Antisocial Behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Aggression </li></ul><ul><li>Direct (expressed) or indirect (repressed) </li></ul><ul><li>Mob Violence </li></ul><ul><li>Deindividuation: The anonymity afforded by being stripped of your identity. </li></ul><ul><li>There is anonymity in a crowd. </li></ul>
  22. 23. Social Action <ul><li>Prosocial Behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Altruism </li></ul><ul><li>Helping that is not motivated by personal gain or notoriety. </li></ul><ul><li>Anonymity is important. </li></ul><ul><li>Cultures where individuality is prized, people are less likely to help. </li></ul><ul><li>The Bystander Effect </li></ul>