PSYCH 10 Lecture 10: Module 42-43 Social Psychology: Thinking & Influence

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University of California - Los Angeles
Kristen Walker

Lecture 5/18/17 Module 42-43 Social Psychology: Thinking & Influence Social psychology ● It is an experimental subfield not clinical ● Social psychologists are most interested in understanding social behavior and its impacts ● They study the social influences that explain why the same person will act differently in different situations ● They use the scientific method and are guided by theory ● Social psychology is the scientific study of how we think about, influence, and relate to one another Fundamental attribution error ● It is the tendency, when analyzing others’ behavior, to overestimate the influence of personal traits and underestimate the effects of the situation ● It is most likely to occur when stranger acts badly ● It has real-life and social consequences ● It is driven by ego and a desire to protect ourselves ● Napolitan and colleagues ​(1979): Students attributed behavior of others to personal traits, even when they were told that behavior was part of an experimental situation. ● To preserve energy, our brain develops shortcuts that could be biased, We need to be aware of these biases so that we can minimize their negative impacts Attitudes ● They are are feelings influenced by beliefs that predispose reactions to objects, people, and events ● We can change attitude using persuasions Persuasions ● Peripheral route persuasion​ uses incidental cues to try to produce fast but relatively thoughtless changes in attitudes. They are not very long lasting. (example: commercials) ● Central route persuasion​ offers evidence and arguments to trigger thoughtful responses. This involves the brain to a much higher degree and has more lasting and durable effects Actions can modify attitudes ● We usually think that emotions determine behavior but it can be the other way around ● Foot-in-the-door phenomenon involves compliance with a large request after having agreed to a small request ● Door-in-the-face phenomenon involves compliance with a small request after having said no to a large reques ●
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