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Chapter 15.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Steve Joordens

Chapter 15 Social Cognition Social psychology- the branch of psychology that studies our social nature-how the actual imagined or implied presence of others influences our thoughts, feelings and behaviors Social cognition- how people attend to, perceive, interprets, and responds to the social world Impression formation- the way in which we integrate info about another’s traits into a coherent sense of who the person is Schema- (pl schemata) a mental framework or body of knowledge that organizes and synthesizes info about a person, place or a thing Central traits- personality attributes that organize and influence the interpretation of other traits (some traits are present yet others have yet to be revealed) Primacy effect-the tendency to form impressions about someone based on the first piece of information we receive about them Self-concept-your knowledge feelings and ideas about yourself Self-is a persons distinct individuality Self-schema-a mental framework that represents and synthesizes information about yourself, a cognitive structure that organizes the knowledge, feelings and ideas that constitute the self-concept Cross-cultural psychologists-interested in the effects of culture on behavior Independent construal- emphasizes the interconnectedness of people and the role that others play in developing an individual’s self-concept Attribution-the process which people infer the causes of other people’s behavior External factors-are stimuli in the physical and social environment such as living conditions, other people, norms, and laws.  Can affect thoughts, feelings attitudes and behaviors Internal factors- a persons traits, needs, and intentions  can affect thoughts feelings attitudes and behaviors Consensual behavior- behavior enacted in common by a large number of people in a particular situation- is usually attributed to external causes (bill says a club is cool, so do many people you will think club is cool/ bill says club is cool, everyone says its not  you question bills taste (internal) Distinctiveness- the extent to which a person performs a particular behavior only during a particular type of event or toward a particular person or thing (different behavior to different stimuli) Consistency- whether a person’s behavior is consistent across time toward another person, an event, or a stimulus Fundamental attribution error- the tendency to overestimate the significance of internal factors (dispositional factors) and underestimate the significance of external factors (situational factors) in explaining other peoples behaviors Belief in a just world- the belief that people get what they deserve in life; a fundamental attribution error (fair world) Actor-observer effect- the tendency to attribute ones own behavior to external factors but others behavior to internal factors (we tend to see out own behavior as a reaction to our environment, while we see the other persons behavior’s as an internal factor- they are stable enough to make that decision) Self-serving bias- the tendency to attribute our accomplishments and successes to internal causes and our failures and mistakes to external causes (good test score-> I am smart (internal)/ bad test score-> hard test (external) False consensus- the tendency of an observer to perceive his or her own response as representative of a general consensus Representativeness heuristic- general rule for decision making by which people classify a person, place, or thing into the category to which it appears to be the most similar Base-rate fallacy- the failure to consider the likelihood that person place or thing is a member of a particular category on the basis of mathematical probabilities Available heuristic- general rule for decision making by which a person judges the likelihood or importance of an event by the ease with which examples of that event come to mind (thin
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