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Cognitive – Experiential Domain Personality from the Inside Emphasis on subjective, conscious experience How you think, feel, perceive your social world.

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Presentation on theme: "Cognitive – Experiential Domain Personality from the Inside Emphasis on subjective, conscious experience How you think, feel, perceive your social world."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Cognitive – Experiential Domain

3 Personality from the Inside Emphasis on subjective, conscious experience How you think, feel, perceive your social world – Chapter 12: Personality and Cognition – Chapter 14: Personality and the Self – Chapter 17: Personality and Culture

4 Personality and Cognition: Perceived Control Narrow cognitive focus – Judgments regarding causal connection between stimuli Perceived Control: extent to which we perceive a relationship between two stimuli – Human tendency to attempt to make sense of things

5 Perceived Control – Individual Differences Locus of Control – Developed by Julian Rotter (1960s) – Based on clinical observations Scale: Higher scores indicate a more external orientation External: Generalized expectancy that events are outside of one’s control Internal: Generalized expectancy that reinforcing events are under one’s control, and that one is responsible for major life outcomes

6 Locus of Control Scale Internal External Generalized expectancy thatGeneralized expectancy that one’s outcomes are contingentone’s outcomes are independent of one’s responsesof one’s responses.

7 Locus of Control Findings Internals act as if they have control – Act on basis of expectancies (i.e., prison study) Generalizes to beliefs about others’ outcomes – If external, believe outcomes for others are independent Religiosity? – Why?

8 Locus of Control Findings Continued Socio-economic status (SES)? – Why? Hours study? Vote? Time? – Why?

9 Locus of Control Scale Better to be internal or external? Problems with scale? Captured by Big 5? Political correlates?

10 Perceived Control – General Principles Regardless of individual differences, how good are people at detecting relationships between stimuli? Both overestimate (perceive relationships that are not warranted) and overestimate (fail to perceive relationships that are warranted)

11 Perceived Control: General Principles Overestimate (erroneously see connections) – Examples? Two types of reasons: Motivational and Cognitive Motivational – People are motivated to understand (and predict, explain, etc.) their social world

12 Perceived Control: General Principles Motivational Explanation People are motivated to understand (and predict, explain, etc.) their social world – Randomness is uncomfortable; it’s meant to be – Science, religion – However, may be so motivated to make sense that they sometimes make sense when there is no sense to be made (i.e., erroneously perceive a nonexistent connection)

13 Perceived Control: General Principles Just World Hypothesis (Belief in a Just World) – Belief that the world is essentially just; therefore, bad things don’t happen to good people Lerner experiments – Ps observe other Ps (actually confederates) in a teacher/learner situation with shocks for incorrect answers. Who is teacher/learning is randomly determined. Ps perceive learner more negatively.

14 Perceived Control: General Principles Real life examples? Positive outcomes? Effect is greater for those lower in power Effect is greater if a more social orientation is induced – Why?

15 Perceived Control: General Principles Cognitive Explanations – Poor information processors – Multiple documented biases

16 Perceived Control: General Principles Illusion of Control (Langer) Overestimate control over chance (i.e., random) events (e.g. gambling) Why? Confuse causality and control – Casino games – Lotteries?

17 Perceived Control: General Principles Illusory Correlation – Wider scope; relevant any time (not just chance events) judging a relationship between stimuli Disease YesNo SymptomYes5025 No20 5

18 Perceived Control: General Principles Disease YesNo SymptomYes502550/75=67% No20 520/25=80% Failure to consider all possible outcomes Occurs anytime judging a relationship between two stimuli (e.g., Californians and vegetarians; Hoosiers and basketball, etc.) Effect is larger if a priori expectation

19 Perceived Control: General Principles Underestimate (erroneously fail to see connections) – Examples? Learned Helplessness – exposure to uncontrollable negative outcomes – belief in no control when it may exist Dogs and uncontrollable shocks Humans and uncontrollable noise


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