Social psychology is the study of how individual or group behavior is influenced by the presence and behavior of others. The major question social psychologists ponder is this: How and why are people's perceptions and actions influenced by environmental factors, such as social interaction? Social psychology focuses on three main areas: social thinking, social influence, and social behavior. Each of these overlapping areas of study is displayed . The circles overlap because, in our everyday lives, these three forces blend together as they influence us.The discipline of social psychology began in the United States at the dawn of the twentieth century. The first published study in this area was an experiment by Norman Triplett (1898) on the phenomenon of social facilitation.Topics examined in social psychology include: the self concept, social cognition, attribution theory, social influence, group processes, prejudice and discrimination, interpersonal processes, aggression, attitudes and stereotypes. It is clear that social psychology is worth appreciating, because it provides us with a framework by which we can understand how we identify ourselves, how we interact in groups. This field essentially assesses our willingness to improve the environments in which we are immersed. Social psychologists study interpersonal and group dynamics and social challenges, such as prejudice, implicit bias, bullying, criminal activity and substance abuse. They research social interactions and the factors that influence them, such as group behavior, attitudes, public perceptions and leadershiSocial Psychologists work to study an individual's behavior, including actions, thoughts and choices and how they are influenced by the larger society. Many Social Psychologists are employed in academia (collegiate or university level), private sector research or public, governmental agencies (public school districts).There are four key characteristics of social psychology including broad scope, cultural mandate, scientific methods, and search for wisdom.