Get 2 days of unlimited access
Class Notes (1,000,000)
CA (600,000)
Humber (300)
PSYC (30)
Lecture 1

PSYC 250 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Statistical Inference, Visible Minority, Evolutionary Psychology

Course Code
PSYC 250
Yvonne Lai

This preview shows pages 1-2. to view the full 6 pages of the document.
Chapter 1:
The Field of Social Psychology: How We think about and Interact with Others
The Field of Social Psychology:
Overview of Chapter:
A working definition
The cutting-edge nature of the field
Research Methods
Use of statistics
Role of theory
Ethics: Balancing the quest for knowledge and the rights of the individual
A Working Definition
Social Psychology:
The scientific field that seeks to understand the nature and cause of individuals behaviour and
though in social situations
Identified Features:
Scientific in nature
Focus on behaviour of individuals
Seeks to understand causes
Scientific in Nature
Set of values and several methods to study range of topics
Core values of science:
Accuracy, objectivity, skepticism, and mindedness
Social psychology is not merely common sense
Rely on scientific method because human are prone to errors
Focus on Behaviour of Individuals
Recognize social behaviour occurs in group settings
But focus of social psychology is on factors that shape behaviour and thoughts of individuals

Only pages 1-2 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

Understand the cause
Social psychologists primarily seeks to understand the following factors and conditions:
Actions and characteristics of people
Cognitive processes (memories, inferences)
Environmental variables
Cultural context (cultural norms)
Biological factors
A biological framework:
Evolutionary psychology
Seeks to investigate the potential role of genetic factors in various aspects of human behaviour
Process of evolution
Variation: organisms vary in many ways
Inheritance: Some of these variations are heritable
Selection: Variations that are adaptive become increasingly common in the population
Cutting Edge Nature
Cognition and behaviour are two side of the same coin
Recent focus has been on the relationship between neural and psychological events
By studying events in the brain (e.g., MRI), other neural activity (e.g., event-related potentials),
and changes in immune system
3. Implicit (nonconscious) processes play a role in influencing our thoughts and behaviours
4. Social psychology adopts a multicultural perspective
There has been growth in visible minority population in Canada
Cultural, ethnic, and racial heritages plays keys roles and exert effects on behaviour
Research Methods
The usefulness of understanding research methods:
To understand the studies discussed in the text
To become an informed consumer of knowledge (helps you decide what you should believe and
what you should reject)
To avoid common errors or making wrong assumptions about information
Describing the world around us
Systematic observation
A method of research in which behaviour systematically observed and recorded
Two approaches
1. Naturalistic observation: observation in natural settings; avoids influencing the subjects being
observed (e.g., playground)
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version