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Lecture 2

COLLAB 2N03 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Central Tendency, Signalling Theory, Selective Perception


Department
Collaborative
Course Code
COLLAB 2N03
Professor
Teal Mc Ateer
Lecture
2

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Perception, Attribution, and Diversity
What is perception?
Perception is the process of interpreting the messages of our senses to provide order and
meaning to the environment
The key word in perception is interpreting – people frequently base their actions on the
interpretation of reality that their perceptual system provide (Perception influence
organizational behavior)
Components of Perception
Perception has three components – a perceiver, a target that is being perceived and some
situational context in which the perception is occurring
The Perceiver
!The perceiver’s experience, needs, and emotions can affect his or her perceptions of a
target
!One of the most important characteristics of the perceiver that influences his or her
impressions of a target is experience (emotion also influence our perception)
!Perceptual defence: The tendency for the perceptual system against unpleasant
emotions
(People often “see what they want to see” & “hear what they want to hear” – our
perceptual system works to ensure we do not see or hear things that are threatening)
The Target
!Perception involves interpretation and the addition of meaning to the target, and
ambiguous targets are especially susceptible to interpretation and addition
!Providing more information about the target will improve perceptual accuracy (not
true)
-Validity: is the result accurate to the fact
-Reliability: is the result can be reproduce
The Situation
!Perception occurs in some situational context, and this context can affect what one
perceives
!The most important effect that the situation can have is to add information about the
target
(The perception of the target changes with the situation)

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Social Identity Theory
-people(perceivers) form perceptions of themselves(target) based on their characteristics and
memberships in social categories(situation) society identity
-people(perceivers) form perceptions of others(target) based on their memberships in social
categories(situation) society category
Social identity theory: A theory that state that people form perceptions of themselves
based on their characteristics and memberships in social categories
Our sense of self is composed of a personal identity and social identity
(Our personal identity is based on our unique personal characteristics & social identity is
based on our perception that we belong to various social groups)
! This two identity answer the question “Who am I?”
People tend to perceive members of their own social categories in more positive and
favorable way than those who are different and belong to other categories
The Perceptual Process
Environmental Stimuli: sensory overload can occur when there are too many stimuli for a person
to process (absorb and observe the data, uses senses to perceive data)
Observation: feeling hearing seeing smelling tasting
Perceptual Selection: since only some of the stimuli in the environment are sensed, perceptual
selection limits what will be perceived (what do i choose to pay attention to)
—External factors(e.g. size, intensity, contrast etc.)
—Internal factors(e.g. familiarity, source credibility etc.)
Perceptual organization/construction:—what is perceptually selected is due in part to what
others are perceiving —perceptual grouping(e.g. proximity, similarity)
Interpretation: —attribution errors etc.
According to Bruner’s Model of the Perceptual Process, when the perceiver encounters an
unfamiliar target, the perceiver is very open to the informational cues contained in the
target and the situation surrounding it (open to information)
Gradually , the perceiver encounters some familiar cues that enable them to make a
crude categorization of the target, which follows from social identity theory (less open to
information)
The perceiver begins to search out cues that confirm the categorization of the target
As the categorization become stronger, the perceiver will ignore or even distort cues that
violate initial perceptions
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Perception is selective: perceivers don't use al cues
Perceptual constancy: the tendency for the target to be perceived in the same way over
time and across situations
Perceptual consistency: the tendency to select, ignore, and distort cues so that they fit
together to form a homogenous picture of the target
Attribution: Perceiving Causes and Motives
Attribution: the process by which causes or motives are assigned to explain people’s
behavior
Dispositional attribution (internal attribution): explanations for behavior based on an
actor’s personality or intellect
Perception that outcomes are due to personality or intellect rather than situation or
environment
Situational attributions (external attribution): explanations for behavior based on an
actor’s external situation or environment
Perception that outcomes are due to situation or environment rather than the person
E.g. Is high performance on the exam due to ability or easy questions???
Three Attribution Questions (guide decisions as to whether we should attribute the
behavior to dispositional or situational causes):
1. Does the person engage in the behavior regularly and consistently? (Consistency
cues)
2. Do most people engage in the behavior, or is it unique to this person?
(Consensus cues)
3. Does the person engage in the behavior in many situations, or is it distinctive to
one situation? (Distinctiveness cues)
1. Consistency Cues information provided on employee overtime
!Consistency cues: attribution cues that reflect how consistently a person engages in a
behavior over time (Does the person engage in the behaviour regularly and consistency?)
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