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Social Psychology

Course Code
Dan Dolderman

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-->PSY100 Lecture June 14, 2011
STUDY: Major disorders, identifying symptoms, method of treatment
Treating Psychological Disorders
Traditionally treated psychological disorders must have convergence
oMore convergence = greater impact on disorder
Talk therapy patients have a voice; empathy & understanding; patients have a
conversation with therapist trust
Importance of expressing ones thoughts and feelings
oPennebakerhas undergraduate students right about their most significant
personal trauma—15 minutes a day/4 days
oAt our core is our resistance to our own problems—background of
Drugs—more of a medical approachpsychiatrists are under more pressure to
prescribe drugs
oNecessary in extreme dysfunctional cases
Behaviour modification treatments
oSpecific behavioural intervention
oMust have excellent control over rewards and contingencies otherwise method
is less effective
oFocused on strengthening people in certain areas of life
Cognitive behaviour therapy
Methods of treatment can be combined
Organic brain disease
Overly controlling family environment can cause higher probability of relapse
oLower relapse rate with less emotionally expressive families—conjunction
with medication makes little difference
oHigher relapse rate with more emotionally expressive families—conjunction
with medication makes a large difference
The importance of drugs depends on environment or family
Medication is not very effective alone
Cognitive behavioural treatment
Example: someone attached to negative self image is easily distracted from positive
aspects of social interactions (e.g. they remember the person that hated them)
Cognitive habits make you expect the worse, and behavioural habits make you act on
those expectations negative spiral
Cognitive habits need to be restructured reappraise certain circumstances in less
negative wys
Disrupting irrational belief
Benefit findingorienting the positivelook at things more holistically
ABCDE Process
Adversity (Activating Event)
Beliefs that automatically follow
Consequences that usually occur
oProblems are learned a habits that give them the negative thought
oUnlearn old habits and learn new, beneficial habits
This approach is focused is focused mostly on the content of people`s thought
Even though a person plays an active role in their disorder, they can be held fully
oBy helping the person themselves you help then slowly gain control of their
oCannot happen instantaneously
You can`t be a sweet cucumber in a vinegar barrel.
Social psychology: the psychology of normal
How do you determine what is normal?
oUsually start comparing to ourselves—we consider ourselves normal
oSelf-concepts and self-schema very accessible
oInterpersonal knowledge
Naive Realismthe sense that we are normal
We assume we see reality accurately
We judge people based on our understanding of ourselves
oPeople similar to us are decent and we like them
oPeople that differ from us are odd, beneath us, weird, deviant
Me: A better version of normal
We are a biased version of normal
800,000 people were surveyed and no one rated themselves as below average in social
Positive self and negative other
oThe self conceptwe experience the self as though it is a real thing and not
a conceptit is whatever we identify withvery flexible
oEndowment effectanything under our possession becomes more valuable
oEx: our house is a home; other houses are just houses
The fundamental attribution error
Our self bias play a role in how we explain ourselves and others
We take credit for our successes nut blame undesirable behaviours on external
In-group favouritismout-group derogation
Our self is whatever we include in our self concept, whatever we identify with (e.g.
loved ones, home sports team...)
oExample: kicking your mom is like kicking you
We are better than they, however, we are not better, they are not worse
This idea is comfortingi do not identify with people who do bad things, i am like
the people who do good
oCan lead to intergroup discrimination, hostility, prejudice
Integration –belonging, conformity, social support
Differentiationindividualism, power, independence
oNeed a balancecan jump back and forth between integration and
If all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you?
The power of social influence
Social norms are important
oExample: how others are going to react to your clothes has some effect on how
you dress
oWe dont have certain kinds of conversations because other people dont have
those conversations
Social Influence
Example: in a lawn conscious neighbourhood there is pressure to get rid of weeds on
oWe can see things (weeds in this case) as different things, but we are
conscious of society
oIn order to maintain a uniqueness of individuality, they do it within a larger
groupthey still need to belong to a group
oIf one person looks at the sky, people will think they are weird; if a small
group of people look up at the sky, others will follow suit
oIf enough people create an impression, it becomes real for other people
The Power of the Situation
Normal people are very responsive to situational cues
Situations are so powerful because of our inclusion and acceptance needs
oEx: Kitty Genovese Effect: gets attacked and raped one night over about a
period of a half hour-hour; 38 people were aware that something bad was
going on but no one called the police