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PSYC 102 Study Guide - Final Guide: Cognitive Dissonance, Fundamental Attribution Error, Classical Conditioning


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 102
Professor
Toni Schmader
Study Guide
Final

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PSYC 102 Studies and Theories Final 02/04/2013 21:31:00
Social Psychology
Auto kinetic effect study (Sherif, 1935)
Is a phenomenon of visual perception in which a stationary,
small point of light in an otherwise dark or featureless
environment appears to move
Line judgment study (Asch, 1951)
Conformity experiments
A subject was exposed to three lines and supposed to compare
them to an original line, and say which line is the same length as
the standard one
5 actors would give wrongs answers, which made the subject
unsure about their answer, and more then one third would
conform to the actors wrong answer.
Milgram’s classic Obedience Studies (1962)
Electroshock study
o A subjects is being put in a fake teacher role, they are
supposed to ask a student question and if they answer the
question wrong, trigger an electroshock
o The subjects is being pushed to continue by an experiment
even when the voltage gets higher every time the switch is
hit, even when the student would seem unresponsive
o Over 60 percent complied fully to the experiment to the
last switch
In later experiments Milgram discovers that obedience was
highest:
o The person giving the orders was close at hand and was
perceived to be a legitimate authority figure
o The authority figure was supported by a prestigious
institution
o The victim was depersonalized or a at distant, even in
another room
o There were mo role models of defiance
Birkenhead drill
o To calm and give priority to passengers, soldiers were
ordered to line up on deck while their ship sank

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Bystander Effect (Darley & Batson, 1968)
We will only help if the situation enables us to notice the
incident, then to interpret it as an emergency, and finally
assume responsibility for helping
At each step the presence of others can turns us ways from the
path that leads to helping
Observation of behaviours in thousands of such situations shows
that the best odds of our helping someone occur when:
o The person appears to need and deserve help
o The person is in some way similar with us
o The person is a woman
o We have just observed someone else being helpful
o We are not in a hurry
o We are in a small town or rural area
o We are feeling guilty
o We are focused on others and not reoccupied
o We are in a good mood
Cognitive dissonance theory (Festinger, 1957)
Guard turn into abusers; doubters into believers
When realise that our actions and attitudes to coincide we
develop tension, to relieve the tension we often bring our
attitudes into line with our actions, cognitive dissonance.
Peg-turning study (Festinger & Carlsmith, 1959)
In Festinger and Carlsmith's classic 1959 experiment, students
were asked to spend an hour on boring and tedious tasks (e.g.,
turning pegs a quarter turn, over and over again).
The tasks were designed to generate a strong, negative attitude.
Once the subjects had done this, the experimenters asked some
of them to do a simple favour. They were asked to talk to
another subject and persuade the impostor that the tasks were
interesting and engaging.
Some participants were paid $20 this favour, another group was
paid $1 and a control group was not asked to perform the
favour.
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When asked to rate the boring tasks at the conclusion of the
study (not in the presence of the other "subject"), those in the
$1 group rated them more positively than those in the $20 and
control groups. Which was seen as evidence for cognitive
dissonance. When paid only $1, students were forced to
internalize the attitude they were induced to express, because
they had no other justification.
Cultural differences in the self (Markus & Kitamaya, 1991)
Kityama:
o The fundamental attribution error appears more often in
some culture than in others
o Individualistic westerners more often attribute behavior to
people’s personal traits
o East Asian cultures are somewhat more sensitive to the
power of the situation
Fundamental attribution error (Ross, 1977)
We overestimate the influence of personality and underestimate
the influence of situations
Example: In class, Jack may be as quiet as Juliette. Catch
Juliette at a party and you may hardly recognize your quiet
classmate.
Personality
Psychoanalytic Theory (Sigmund Freud)
Psychoanalytic treatment can hypothesize how patients
unconsciously are their own worst enemies: how unconscious,
symbolic reactions that have been stimulated by experience are
causing symptoms
Defence Mechanism (Anna Freud, 1930’s)
Tactics that reduce or redirect anxiety by distorting reality
Social learning theory (Bandura 1960’s)
The theory assumes that children learn gender identity, the
sense of being male or female
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