2 Lecture Overview Our Thoughts About Others Our Feelings About Others Our Actions Toward OthersApplying Social Psychology to Social Problems
3 Introductory Definition Social Psychology (study of how other people influence our thoughts, feelings, and actions)
4 Our Thoughts About Others Attribution (an explanation for the cause of behaviors or events)To determine the cause we first decide whether the behavior comes from an:internal (dispositional) cause, such as personal characteristics, orexternal (situational) cause, such as situational demands.
5 Our Thoughts About Others: Mistaken Attributions Fundamental Attribution Error: misjudging causes of others’ behavior and attributing to internal (dispositional) vs. external (situational) onesSaliency bias may explain focus on dispositional causes.
6 Our Thoughts About Others: Mistaken Attributions 2. Self-Serving Bias:taking credit for our successes, andexternalizing our failures
7 Our Thoughts About Others Attitude (learned predisposition to respond cognitively, affectively, and behaviorally to a particular object)
8 Our Thoughts About Others: Cognitive Dissonance Cognitive Dissonance: feeling of discomfort created from a discrepancy between an attitude and behavior or between two competing attitudes
9 Our Thoughts About Others: Cognitive Dissonance (Continued)
10 Our Thoughts About Others: Cognitive Dissonance (Continued) Festinger and Carlsmith’s Cognitive Dissonance Study: Participants given very boring tasks to complete, and then paid either $1 or $20 to tell next participant the task was “very enjoyable” and “fun.”Result? Those paid $1 felt more cognitive dissonance, therefore, they changed their attitude more about the boring tasks.
11 Our Feelings About Others: Prejudice and Discrimination Prejudice (learned, generally negative, attitude toward members of a group)Discrimination (negative behaviors directed at members of a group)
13 Our Feelings About Others: Prejudice and Discrimination (Cont.) Three components of prejudice:Cognitive (stereotype--set of beliefs about the characteristics of people in a group generalized to all group members)Affective (feelings associated with objects of prejudice)Behavioral (discrimination--negative behaviors directed at members of a group)
14 Our Feelings About Others: Sources of Prejudice and Discrimination 1. Learned response2. Mental shortcutin-group favoritism (in-group viewed more positively than out-group)out-group homogeneity effect (out-group judged as less diverse than in-group)3. Economic and political competition4. Displaced aggression
15 Our Feelings About Others: Interpersonal Attraction Interpersonal Attraction (positive feelings toward another)Three Key Factors:Physical AttractivenessProximity (geographic closeness)Similarity (need complementarity vs. need compatibility)
16 Our Feelings About Others: Interpersonal Attraction (Liking and Loving) Loving can be defined in terms of caring, attachment, and intimacy.Liking is a favorable evaluation of another.
17 Our Feelings About Others: Interpersonal Attraction (Liking and Loving) Sample items from Rubin’s liking and loving test:
18 Our Feelings About Others: Interpersonal Attraction (Continued) Romantic Love (erotic attraction with future expectations)Companionate Love (lasting attraction based on trust, caring, tolerance, and friendship)
19 Our Actions Toward Others: Social Influence Conformity (changing behavior because of real or imagined group pressure)Obedience (following direct commands, usually from an authority figure)
20 Our Actions Toward Others: Conformity Asch’s Conformity Study:Participants were asked to select the line closest in length to X.When confederates gave obviously wrong answers (A or C), more than 1/3 conformed and agreed with the incorrect choices.
21 Our Actions Toward Others: Conformity (Continued) Why do we conform?Normative Social Influence (need for approval and acceptance)Informational Social Influence (need for information and direction)Reference Groups (people we conform to because we like and admire them and want to be like them)
22 Our Actions Toward Others: Obedience Milgram’s obedience study: Participants serving as “teachers” are ordered to continue shocking someone with a known heart condition who is begging to be released.Result? 65% of “teachers” delivered highest level of shock (450 volts) to the “learner.”
26 Our Actions Toward Others: Group Processes Group membership involves:Roles (set of behavioral patterns connected with particular social positions)Deindividuation (reduced self-consciousness, inhibition, and personal responsibility)
27 Group Processes: “Power of the Situation” Zimbardo’s Stanford Prison Study:Students were randomly assigned as “prisoners” or “guards.”Original study scheduled to last for 2 weeks but terminated after 6 days due to alarming psychological changes in both “prisoners” and “guards.”
28 Group Processes: Problems with Decision Making Group polarization (group movement toward either a riskier or more conservative decision; result depends on the members’ initial dominant tendency)Groupthink (faulty decision making occurring when a highly cohesive group seeks agreement and avoids inconsistent information)
29 Our Actions Toward Others: Group Processes (Continued) Symptoms of Groupthink:Illusion of invulnerabilityBelief in the morality of the groupCollective rationalizationsStereotypes of out-groupsSelf-censorshipIllusion of unanimityDirect pressure on dissenters
37 Our Actions Toward Others: Altruism Why Don’t We Help?Diffusion of Responsibility (dilution, or diffusion, of personal responsibility)Ambiguous Situation (unclear what help is needed)
38 Altruism Altruism is unselfish regard for the welfare of others. Donating blood, offering time and effort to help victims of a natural disaster, and risking one’s life to save victims of genocide with no expectation of personal reward are examples of altruism.
39 Decision-Making Process in a Bystander Intervention The bystander effect is the tendency for any given bystander to an emergency to be less likely to give aid if other bystanders are present.Research on the bystander effects indicates that to decide to help one must (1) notice the event, (2) interpret it as an emergency, or (3) assume responsibility for helping.
40 Altruistic Behavior Explored Social exchange theory proposes that underlying all behavior, including helping, is the desire to maximize our benefits (which may include our own good feelings) and minimize our costs.For example, we will donate blood if we anticipate that the rewards (e.g., social approval, good feelings) for doing so exceed the costs (e.g., time, discomfort).
41 Altruistic Behavior Explored Social norms may also prescribe altruistic behavior.Reciprocity norm is the expectation that people will help, not hurt, those who have helped them.Social-responsibility norm is the expectation that people will help those who are dependent on them.
42 Five Beliefs that Propel Groups Toward Conflict The first core belief revolves around a person’s enduring conviction that he or she is better than other people in important ways.E.g., a sense of specialness, deservingness, and entitlement, lack of empathy and thus any appreciation of others’ viewpoints and experiences.
43 Five Beliefs that Propel Groups Toward Conflict INJUSTICE: The second core belief revolves around perceived injustice at the hands of specific others or by the world at large.The individual may identify as unfair that which is only unfortunate.It can lead him or her to engage in retaliatory acts.
44 Five Beliefs that Propel Groups Toward Conflict Vulnerability: the third central belief predisposing a person to social conflict revolves around an individual’s conviction that he or she is perpetually living in harm’s way.Such vulnerability is associated with high levels of anxiety, overly vigilant, bracing themselves for failure, rejection, injury, or loss.
45 Five Beliefs that Propel Groups Toward Conflict DISTRUST: The fourth important belief involves distrust.At the individual level, the core belief focuses on the presumed hostility and evil intent of others.Harm is perceived to be intentional or the result of extreme negligence.
46 Five Beliefs that Propel Groups Toward Conflict DISTRUST Continued: The predisposition to suspicion is sometimes transformed into outright paranoia accompanied by delusions of persecution.People display a bias toward interpreting others’ behavior as hostile and malevolent even when other explanations are available.
47 Five Beliefs that Propel Groups Toward Conflict Helplessness: The fifth and final core belief is one of personal helplessness.Individuals may be convinced that even carefully planned and executed actions will fail to produce good outcomes.The belief tends to be self-perpetuating because it diminishes motivation.
48 Encouraging Peaceful Cooperation and Reducing Social Conflict. Research suggests that noncompetitive contact between parties of equal status may help reduce prejudice.More important, the discovery of superordinate, or shared goals that require cooperation can turn enemies into friends.
49 Encouraging Peaceful Cooperation and Reducing Social Conflict. Communication, sometimes through a third-party mediator, also promotes mutual understanding.Finally, the GRIT strategy suggests that reciprocated conciliatory gestures bring peace.
50 Encouraging Peaceful Cooperation and Reducing Social Conflict. the GRIT strategy:Graduated and Reciprocated Initiatives in Tension- ReductionAnnounce recognition of mutual interests and intent to reduce tension.Initiates 1 or more small conciliatory acts.Without weakening retaliatory capability, opens doors,Reciprocate in kind (similar response)
51 The Dual Concern Model of Social Conflict Pruitt, Rubin, & Kim identify five specific strategies for dealing with social conflict.Hypothetical case of Peter Colger, who has been looking forward to a two-week vacation at a quiet mountain lodge. His wife Mary, however, wants to spend their vacation at a busy seaside resort.
52 The Dual Concern Model of Social Conflict Peter can respond by:Contending (arguing for the merits of a mountain vacation, even threatening to go alone if Mary refuses)Problem-Solving approach and attempt to find a vacation spot that satisfies them both.
53 The Dual Concern Model of Social Conflict Peter can respond by:Yield to Mary’s preference and go to the seashore.Inactive (do nothing) in the hope that the disagreement will evaporate.Withdraw from the controversy by deciding not to take any vacation.
54 Our Actions Toward Others: Altruism How Do We Increase Helping?Assign responsibilityReduce ambiguityIncrease societal rewards
55 Applying Social Psychology to Social Problems Reducing Prejudice and DiscriminationOvercoming Destructive Obedience
56 Applying Social Psychology to Social Problems Reducing Prejudice and DiscriminationCooperation and superordinate goalsIncreased contactCognitive retrainingCognitive dissonance
57 Applying Social Psychology to Social Problems: Overcoming Destructive Obedience Several important factors:Socialization toward obediencePower of the situationGroupthinkFoot-in-the-door technique (making a small request followed by increasingly larger requests)A relaxed moral guard