Forming Impressions 11/22/2011 10:14:00 PM
Correspondent Inference Theory
- You actively analyze a person’s behaviour to make inferences based on
1) Degree of Choice
o Understands why a person is behaving in a particular way, it
helps to know if he chose to act in the observed behaviour in
o Consider that uncommon behvaiour gives us a lot more
information than common behaviour. If someone behaves in a
way typical to what you would expect you do not have any
reason to infer an underlying cause to their behaviour.
3) The Intended Consequences
o To see if the individual is exhibiting a particular behaviour is
motivated by a particular goal.
- Predicts how you determine if a given behaviour is due to an individual’s
personal disposition OR the situation and circumstances.
- Three variables are considered to determine if a behaviour is dispositional
o Does the person usually behave this way? If the answer is
yes, then continue to seek an explanation.
o Does the individual behave differently in different situations?
Yes means that the behaviour is driven by the situation,
where no means that the behaviour is driven by his
o Do others behave similarly in the situation? If the answer is
yes, then it is due to the situation, and if the answer is no,
then it is due to each individual’s particular disposition.
Fundamental Attribution Error - The tendency to over-value dispositional factors for the observed
behaviours of others while under-valuing situational factors.
- You are more likely to make the fundamental attribution error when you
determining the causes of the behaviour of others rather than your own
behaviour. This is because you are more aware of your situational
Actor Observer Effect
- You as the actor are better aware of the many situational factors
contributing to your own behaviour; but when you observe others you only
have the current situation at hand, so you assume the individual’s behaviour
is representative of what would typically be observed.
Cultural Differences Within the Fundamental Attribution Error
- Compared to the Chinese, the American students and newspapers were
more likely to make the fundamental attribution error.
- Generally, the fundamental attribution error is diminished in collectivist
societies where there is less focus on individual behaviour and ore focus on
relationships and roles within society.
- This founded that American Olympic gold medal winners are more likely to
attribute their gold winning performance to their determination and talent,
while Japanese gold medal winners are more likely to attribute their gold
winning performance to the success of the coaching team and organization.
Self-Serving Bias - Refers to your tendency to perceive yourself favourably.
Above Average Effect
- Causes you to identify dispositional causes for your successes, but
situational causes for your failures.
- Gives you an exaggerated view on your abilities.
- Makes you believe that you are better than other people.
- Social perceptions are shaped by similar heuristics because we have
limited ability and formal training in analyzing behaviour, and limited
attention to put towards this task.
- You classify people by considering how well their behaviour fits with a
- Use your experiences and memories to classify things.
- Experiment done by Craig Fox found that when students listed more way to
improve a course, they rated the course better than the students who listed
only two improvements of a course.
- Five things that make it more likely to be attracted to someone:
o You are more likely to be attracted to someone who you live
with or work closely with. This has to deal not only with
physical distance, but functional distance as well.
o Likely to like those that you anticipate interaction with.
o Mere exposure effect – describes your tendency to be more
positive towards things that are familiar, even if you have