PSYB10 LECTURE 01
What is social psych? Uses scientific methods “to understand and explain how the
thought, feeling and behavior of individuals are influenced by the actual, imagined, or
implied presence of other human beings. Gordon Allport , 1985. This also includes non-
humans. Social psych is out to explain the thought, feeling and behavior of individuals
and this is referred to as the ABCs of social psychology.
Affect – emotions, feelings and moods, Behavior- verbal and non-verbal action,
cognition- thoughts, sensations, perceptions, processing and memory.
Social psych also studies how the ABCs are influenced by the actual, imagined, or
implied presence of other human beings/non-humans.
Experimental setup by brosnan and de Waal (2003) nature
• Research Question:
• Do non-human primates consider social concepts like fairness into their
decision-making about basic needs?
• Collect data from a bunch of pairs of Capuchin monkeys
• Place each monkey pair in separate cages that have a view of the other
• Teach the monkeys to do a simple bartering task: if the Capuchin gives the
Experimenter a token, it will get some food in return
• Between-subjects Independent Variable: The Experimenter either...
• Equity Condition: … both monkeys get cucumbers for their tokens
• Inequity Condition: … one monkey a cucumber and the other gets a
• Record how many times each Capuchin refuses to eat or barter
Results: when both monkeys are getting a cucumbers there are few refusals, during
inequity condition, there are almost half of the refusals. The final result is when one
monkey is getting a cucumber for exchanging the token and the other getting grapes
without exchanging anything, then the first monkey refused all the food it got aka
refusal to continue with task.
Physiological synchrony- is a process whereby interaction between people, very quickly
the cardiovascular and respiratory responses begins to converge with the other person.
History of Social Psych
Theoretical history: late 1800s psych was a subfield of philosophy/ philosophy of mind.
William james is the father of psychology. Wundt established the first experimental
psychology lab in Europe. William James’s quote: “The community stagnates without the
impulse of the individual. The impulse dies away without the sympathy of the community”
meaning that an individual is a unique self but also intimately connected to other.
First social psychological experiment was called social facilitation meaning that
performance is affected by the presence of other. Portrayed by Triplett (1898).
Kurt lewin was called the father of social psychology and he was interested in
perception and cognition and dyadic interactionism. Government wasn’t interested in social psychology upon till World War 2 and after
WW2, government became interested and the first topics that were studied in social
psych were persuasion and propaganda. This was because most social psychologist at
the time was funded by the government to study effective ads for war bond aka fear
was an effective persuasion tackle (most don’t work expect if there’s a solution).
Post war: social psychologist studied on how did nazi Germany happened? Also
Milgram’s obedience to authority found of that most people will follow authority even
if it is to harm someone, that’s if the person instructing them was the position of power
Murder of Kitty Genovese in March 13th, 1964 there were at least 39 witnesses and no
one intervened or even called the police, Darley’s & Latané’s “Bystander Apathy”
research. Another example was Jonestown Mass Suicide November 18th, 1978 907
people poisoned themselves (or were poisoned by their parents)
Methods on social psych:
Social psych toolkit: self-report/survey, reaction time tasks, priming, non-verbal/verbal
behavior, neuroscience and psychophysiology.
Self-reports: obtained in anyway by pencil and paper, interviews and computer survey
Reaction time tasks: obtained through computers, stop watches, videos and audios.
Priming: through subliminally and explicit priming
Non- verbal/verbal behavior: video cameras, audio recording and close observation.
Neuroscience: obtained through FMRI, brain damaged patients and EEG.
Psychophysiology: through spots& band electrodes, temp. Sensors, saliva and
Thinking about social objects/people which is a physical object that has the ability to
engage in social cognition. Thinking going back to the basic of cognitive psych when it
comes to social cognition and it can be automatic cognition or controlled cognition.
Social cognitive basics: cognition:
1. Perception: becoming aware of something through the senses.
Pre-attentive Processes: Rapid processing of complex scene. Rapid = less than 250ms,
Complex = large, multi-element display of information, something that “catches your
eye” or “pops out at you. Example is gaze detection meaning that people focus on face
that is looking at them.
2. Processing information: encoding information is selecting information from the
environment and storing it in memory. Atte