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Midterm

PSY100Y5 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Cognitive Dissonance, Sympathetic Nervous System, Deindividuation


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSY100Y5
Professor
Dax Urbszat
Study Guide
Midterm

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2008
PSY100 – Test 6
L0101 M 2-4
1. Explain the Biopsychosocial model of Health Psychology. [3 marks]
-it maintains the premises and practices of the medical model by looking at biological problems,
but also takes into account the importance of psychological and social factors for proper
assessment, diagnosis, and treatment for both mental and medical disorders
2. Identify and describe four of the psychological responses to stress discussed in the
lecture. [4 marks]
- Emotional instability: e.g., irritability and losing temper, hypersensitivity and crying, etc..
- Problem solving difficulties: e.g., trouble making decisions, poor choices, easily frustrated
- Ruminative thinking: obsessively worrying and intrusive disturbing mental images
- Catastrophizing: using extreme absolute language, over-reacting to minor problems, etc.
3. Explain how the Sympathetic Adrenal Medullary (SAM) system operates.
[4 marks]
- stress is perceived by the cerebral cortex which signals the hypothalamus to activate the
sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight). This stimulates the Adrenal Medulla glands to secrete
catecholimines, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. The effects are raised blood pressure, irregular
heart rate, sweating, and constriction of peripheral blood vessels.
4. Explain problem-focused and emotion-focused coping. [4 marks]
- problem-focused coping is aimed at reducing the demands of the stressful situation or expanding
the resources available to deal with the stressor, i.e., dealing directly with the problem or situation
- emotion-focused coping is aimed at controlling the emotional response to the stressful situation
5. Explain and provide an example for the term defensive attribution, and give a reason
for why people might use defensive attributions.
[3 marks]
- Defensive attributions are a tendency to blame (make internal attributions about) victims for their
misfortunes, so that one feels less likely to be victimized in a similar way. E.g., blaming a rape
victim for the clothes she wore or blaming a mugging victim for being out so late, etc..
- People use defensive attributions to create an illusion of safety and to avoid confronting the ugly
reality that bad things happen to good people for no reason
6. Briefly explain the procedure and results of the Asch study discussed in class.
[5 marks]
Subjects had to identify which line matched the target line from a choice of three. The task was
designed to be very easy. There were five confederates that answered out loud first, then the
subject answered. On some trials, all the confederates answered the same incorrect response. When
this occurred 35% of subjects conformed and answered incorrectly as well and the majority of
subjects conformed at least one time. There was no conformity when the confederates were not

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unanimous in their answers.
7. What is deindividuation and what are some circumstances where it might occur? [3
marks]
- deindividuation is a loss of self-awareness and evaluation apprehension that can occur when a
situation allows one to feel anonymous
- it can occur when one is in a crowd, or when one is wearing a mask, or wearing a uniform that
many others are wearing, etc
8. List 4 desirable phenomena that can result from being in a group. [4 marks]
[any four, one mark each, other answers acceptable if correct]
•Social, moral, and language development, sense of membership and identity, charity, emotional
comfort, support, social facilitation, cooperation, survival
PSY100 Test 6 L0201 T2-4
1. Explain the relationship between social support and stress. [4 marks]
-Social support is two-way communication in which a person can confide their concerns and
receive support
-people who have low social support tend to have a decreased lifespan
-social support can buffer a person against the effects of stress by allowing them to share
their feelings and problems with others who can listen and offer help
-social support is a positive force that allows for shared enjoyment and thus reduces overall
susceptibility to stress
2. What is stress? [4 marks]
Stress is a psychobiological process. Stress is a stimulus (stressors) like catastrophies (earthquake,
flood or war), life events (marriage, divorce) and circumstances (poverty, overcrowding). Stress is
a response (strain) both physiological and psychological. Stress is a process where transactions
between the person and environment lead to perceived discrepancies between the demands of the
situation and the resources of the person.
3. List 8 behavioural responses to stress discussed in class. [4 marks]
[any 8 for ½ mark each]
1) procrastination & avoidance
2) lowered performance
3) increased alcohol & drug use and abuse
4) intentional acts of sabotage
5) increased use of prescription drugs
6) undereating due to apathy, depression
7) overeating as an escape
8) weight loss
9) increased recklessness, gambling
10) aggression and criminal acts
11) poor relations with family and friends
12) suicide or attempted suicide

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4. List 3 positive emotion-focused coping strategies. [3 marks]
- meditation
- social support
- individual or group therapy
5. Describe and give an example of a stable and an unstable internal attribution for why
you aced your final exam in PSY100. [3 marks]
- internal attributions are inferences made about the causes of behaviors or events that consider the
causes as being due to personality, traits, or personal dispositions.
- stable internal attribution: I am smart
- unstable internal attribution: I studied very hard
6. What are norms? Provide two examples. [3 marks]
- norms are the unwritten rules and codes of behavior for a particular society
- e.g., not cutting in line in front of other, eating ice cream with a spoon, not wearing clothes inside
out, etc…
7. How does being in a crowd lead to a greater likelihood of committing violent or
unacceptable behavior? [4 marks]
-crowds can lead to deindividuation which is a loss of self awareness and evaluation
apprehension. When deindividuation is combined with the high states of arousal, and
diffusion of responsibility created by being in a crowd, these factors can disinhibit
violent or unacceptable behaviors
-[full marks should also be given if the student discusses convergence and contagion
instead]
8. What is Cognitive Dissonance and how does one reduce it? [3 marks]
- cognitive dissonance is an aversive state that can arise when our attitudes and our behaviors are
not consistent. We can reduce dissonance by either changing our behaviors to fit our attitudes or
adjusting our attitudes to be consistent with our behaviors.
9. In the Aronson and Mills (1959) sex group study discussed in class, how did the
researchers get women to come back to the group? [2 marks]
- subjects in the experimental condition were given an embarrassing initiation into the group, thus
making them more likely to feel that the group was interesting and useful in order to justify the
effort the subjects made to get into the group.
PSY100 Test 6 L6001
1. Describe Richard Lazarus’ modern view of stress. [4 marks]
-stress is a transaction between a person and their environment.
-There is a primary appraisal that determines if something is benign or stressful based upon
one’s subjective determination of the demands of the situation and the resources available
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