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University of Toronto St. George
Will Huggon

Lecture 4 part 2- Attitudes and behavior - Lecture 5- Attitudes and behavior Theory of reasoned action - Before doing a behavior there is o Salient beliefs o Probability of these beliefs coming true o Evaluation (good or bad) of these beliefs - And whether the person does the behavior depends = sum (probability of belief coming true x evaluation) - Rated on a scale from -3 to +3 Subjective norms about behavior - other peoples’ opinions are important - two components o normative beliefs (referent’s opinion) o motivation to comply (how important their opinion is to you) - whether the person does the behavior depends on sum (NB X MC) , both on scale from - 3 to +3 Intention - Intention (probability of behavior) = own attitude towards the behavior (probability of consequences coming true, and evaluations of these consequences) + subjective norms (what you believe other people will think about the behavior, and how important these other people’s opinions are to you. Priming the private self vs. the collective self - Influence on attitude and subjective norms - Done by making participants think about what makes them different vs. similar to their friends - Priming the private self = attitudes more predictive of behavioral intention - Priming the collective self = subjective norms more predictive Previous behavior can also predict behavior - Learned preferences or habits of behaving o Predict intention and behavior Personal factors - Attitudinal ambivalence o Ex: dieting, ambivalence = care a lot about the diet, and ALSO care a lot about eating/food. o High ambivalence = high positive attitude and high negative attitude o High ambivalence individuals’ behaviors and intentions are hard to predict, maybe influenced by the positive or negative component. Depends on context - Self-monitoring o People who are high in self-monitoring: less likely to display attitude consistent behavior (conform to others behavior) Theory of planned behavior - Modification of theory of reasoned action - Added component: perceived behavioral control = the extent to which someone believes they can behave in an attitude congruent way (or influence the outcomes of the behavior). Ex: standing up to bullies - Perceived behavioral control may be different from actual behavioral control Self-awareness - Can influence behavior - Children taking Halloween candy example Attitude accessibility - Associative network = attitude objects (and things associated with them) are nodes in an associative network. Attitudes are what connect attitude objects to their evaluations (which are also nodes). - More frequently the link is activated, the stronger the attitude becomes. - when one concept is activated, this can activate connected concepts too - The stronger the link between attitude object and summary evaluation, stronger the attitude, the higher the accessibility, more likely it will influence behavior Associated thing: ugly ▬ ▬ Evaluation: NEGATIVE Attitude object: CAR + + Attitude to behavior process model: - Fazio - Attitude activation  selective attention  influence perception  interpretation of the event  behavior - Social norms definition of the situation  behavior Lecture 6 Fazio’s mode model - Motivation and cognitive capacity to process information, if yes, then deliberative processing model and general attitude is activated and influences behavior - If no, then spontaneous processing model is activated, if there is strong, accessible attitude, then general attitude is activated and influence behavior. If no strong salient attitude, then behavior is unrelated to attitude Response latency - Can be a measure of attitude accessibility and strength - The stronger/more accessible an attitude is  more likely it will influence behavior Perception and attitudes - Perception is subjective, depends on interpretation not only sensation Accessibility and self-reports - Attitude accessibility can affect self-reports - Ex: how satisfied are you with your life + how often do you date (vs. other way around) - Ex: recall 6 vs. 12 incidents of being assertive + how assertive are you Priming - Recently activated info influence interpretations of other info - Ex; the classic Donald study. Primed for aggression or not (reading scrambled words related to aggression or neutral words). And rate how hostile Donald is. The ones primed for aggression saw him as more hostile - Other versions of Donald study: subliminally presented aggressive words and rate how hostile Donald is Associative network model vs. Parallel constraint model - Parallel constraints model- when a concept is activated, it can activate or inhibit connected concepts. Connectionist model - Pattern completion needed for activation of attitudes - And different concepts share parts of patterns (overlapping patterns) Automatic attitude activation - Lack of awareness, intention, effort, or control - Sequential priming studies: response to the target is quicker when the prime was related to the target. Ex: prime = nurse, target = doctor. Vs. prime = pizza, target = doctor - Evaluative priming studies: association speeds response to the target, when both the target and prime are negative or both are positive - Stronger the link between the two objects, the faster the responding to the second What do automatic attitudes do? - Provide an automatic evaluation of a situation - Bias perception Stronger/more accessible attitudes - Easier to remember - Cost: when you have a strong attitude about something, it’s difficult to detect a change in it. - When there is more time between the prime and the target more opportunity for conscious control and less influence of the prime Implicit attitude - Traces of past experience that unconsciously influence behavior, feelings and thought. Attitude consistency - When behaviors are not consistent with our attitudescan lead to attitude change because it is unpleasant to feel inconsistent or like a hypocrite Lecture 7- consistency theories and behavior predicting attitude change Fitz Heider - Social relations have balance - Triads of relationships, 3 elements = person, other person, attitude object - Two dimensions: liking/disliking the other, and liking/disliking the object. If you dislike the other you do not want to feel similar to them. If you like them, then you want to feel similar to them. - Balanced triads: consistency between the two dimension - Imbalanced: no consistency between two dimension - To resolve inconsistency in a triad, you can either change your attitude towards: o The other person o the object o (among friends) persuade person to change attitude towards object o Have no attitude towards the object o Split your feelings into more than one realm. Ex: like the person for one reason, but dislike for another. Zajonc - A triad is only pleasant when there is both agreement between the two people, and liking between them. Ex: like other person and you both hate/like the object (agree with you) Congruity theory - Allows for the gradation of relationships between elements (person, other and object) - Rate attitude towards other and object on a scale of -3 to +3. Assertions are considered either +1 (when positive) or -1 (when negative) - Rs = Ro (d)  Rs is resulting attitude towards source, Ro is resulting attitude towards object, and d is the direction of the assertion. Ao is previous attitude towards object, and As is previous attitude towards source. Festinger- dissonance theory - Inconsistent cognitions produce dissonance - And this leads to a motivation to reduce the dissonance by making the cognitions consistent - Arousal (dissonance or unpleasant state)+ attribution (attribute the arousal to the inconsistent cognitions) needed - When attitude does not match behavior, to reduce dissonance o Change attitude o Change behavior o Or add a consonant cognition Belief disconformation paradigm - Ex: flood example: when there was cognitive dissonance (flood didn’t happen), added consonant cognitions to reduce this Dissonance and insufficient justification - Aronson and Carlsmith- Ex: threats to not play with toy- mild threat children experiences a negative change in attitude—amount of attraction towards the toy dropped. - Ex: the best fraternities have the most severe initiation rituals - Ex: electric shock (mild vs. strong) to participate in discussion vs. unrelated to experiment Forced compliance - Ex: Festinger and Carlsmith - Paid $1 or $20 to lie about enjoyment of a boring task Post-decision dissonance - Happens as a result of approach-approach conflict - Ex: household appliances study - Ex: marriage ―choose someone and then you will love him/her‖ This is the dissonant theory view of marriage Self-perception theory - Alternative to dissonance theory - No attitude to begin with, therefore no dissonance, then behavior creates a consonant attitude - Attitude comes after the behavior OR initial attitude is weak Does post decision dissonance require memory for the choice? - Amnesics study - Rate how much they like certain paintings, then a filler task to forget, then ask to pick one painting to take, filler task, then rate paintings again Unified theory - Dissonance might be an implicit process - The things linked to the self will be liked, the things we like will be linked to the self - Implications for racism Lecture 8- origin of stereotypes Categorization is necessary because: - Complex social world - We have limited cognitive capacity : we are cognitive misers - attitudes speed up decision making, use up less cognitive resources - helps us learn what to approach and what to avoid - other simplifying techniques o heuristics o stereotypes (categorization of people) Negative consequences - categorization could be wrong - cause people to treat all members of a group the same Social categorization - categorizing people in to different groups based on a common characteristic they share - might lead to biased beliefs ABCs of out-group attitudes - A- Prejudice - B- discrimination - C- Stereotypes - Stereotypes: cognitive schemas used to easily and efficiently organize information about people based on their membership in particular group. Activation of stereotypes is automatic, but you can be aware of stereotypes without endorsing them. Everyone within one culture has similar knowledge of stereotypes in that culture - Prejudice- affective component associated with stereotypes - Discrimination: is the inappropriate and unfair treatment of people solely based on their group membership Bias - Biases occur when we o Assume that all members of an out-group are the same, while seeing people in our in-group as individuals o Assume characteristic about a group which might not be true o Incorrectly place people into groups - Similar to how attitudes are a precondition to behavior, BIAS created by stereotypes and prejudice is the precondition to DISCRIMINATION - Biases influence: o Attention- what things you pay attention during an interaction with someone or while observing someone o Perception- how you perceive someone o Memory o Expectations and beliefs – what you expect from interaction with people of the same group - Belief perseverance: discounting things that do not support our beliefs while exaggerating things that do - 1960s- assumed that people were in conscious control of the perceptions and decisions they make as well as their actions - 1970s- The idea of the cognitive miser: o limited cognitive resources o engaging in effortful thought all the time would use up these resources too fast o Strategic information processing: need to use heuristics, categorization, and stereotypes to simplify the complex world. o Using habit and previous experiences o Can switch between automatic and deliberate processing o Advantage: Reserve cognitive resources for important matters and allow for immediate responding to less important matters - 1980s: the idea of the cognitive monster: o Decision making is not strategic (no heuristics), instead it is unconscious and automatic process. o Mere presence of out-group member or even thought about them activates stereotypes o Not activated to a level of conscious awareness, but to a level that influences perception Two factor theories and return to control of decision making - Two conditions: o Must be aware of influence of stereotypes o Must have the motivation and cognitive capacity for conscious control of decision making Devine - ―Stereotype activation is automatic, but application can be controlled‖ - Devine study 1 o Asked participants to list black stereotypes they know o Found that all participants had similar knowledge of black stereotypes regardless of prejudice level.  High prejudiced people knew an equal amount of + and – black stereotypes as low prejudiced people did - Devine study 2 o Prime with black-stereotype words  High prime (80% stereotype consistent words) vs. low prime (20% stereotype consistent words) o high prime participants rated Donald as more hostile o no difference between high prejudiced and low prejudiced people - Devine study 3 o Repeat study 1 o Ask participants to rate how much they endorse these stereotypes o High pred. participants endorsed more – than + stereotypes o Low pred. participants endorsed more + than – stereotypes Differential activation of stereotypes - Automatic stereotypes are not activated in the same way for everyone in one culture - Activation differs between low and high prejudiced people Lecture 9- persuasion Two routes to persuasion - Central route: o Attention o Motivation and cognitive capacity to process information - Peripheral or spontaneous route o Not fully paying attention o Low motivation and/or cognitive capacity to process info What is persuasion? - Symbolic process where - Communicators (sources) try to convince other people (recipients) - To change their attitudes and/or behavior towards something - Through the transmission of a message - In an atmosphere of free choice Two types of ethics of persuasion - Consequentialism: ―the ends justify the means‖, a morally right action is an action that produces good outcomes, regardless of how the outcomes were attained - Deontological: ―the ends do not justify the means‖ the morality of an action is in itself, and not the outcomes Persuasion and free will - On a continuum from coercion/forced to convinced/persuaded The functions of attitudes - Utilitarian: attitudes help us approach certain things and avoid others. (Approach rewards and avoid punishment). Attitudes are adopted in a person’s own self-interest. Attitudes are preconditions to behavior. o Ex: drunk driving– a negative attitude towards this will be rewarding (arrive home safely) and avoids punishment (accident) - Knowledge: attitudes are used to organize information about the complex world and maintain a stable, meaningful view of the world. o Ex: such as categorization and stereotypes, just-world hypothesis, self-serving bias, illusions of invulnerability - Ego-defensive: psychodynamic principles: attitudes used to protect the self from psychological harm o Ex: denial, repression, projection, and rationalization - Value-expressive: these attitudes are central to a person’s self-concept, and communicating them is a way of expressing who you are. o Ex: being pro-life vs. pro-choice 3 types of attitude change (social influence) - Compliance -
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