What is an attitude.docx

5 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Toronto St. George
Will Huggon

“What is an attitude?” - Function of attitudes - What theorists have said about attitudes - What I will present below INTRO: Attitudes play a significant role in our lives, and they’re a fundamental part of what makes us human. They help us organize information about the complex world we live in (knowledge function), help us make decisions about what to approach and what to avoid (utilitarian function), and help us express who we are (value-expressive function). Some theorists, like Thurstone have argued that attitudes are ―preconditions to behavior‖ in that they do no really predict behavior but predict the INTENTION to predict in a certain way. Others like Wicker have argued that attitudes do not predict behavior at all. Below I will discuss what attitudes are in terms of their components, structure, strength, stability and the extent to which they are conscious or unconscious. 1. ABCs of attitudes - The idea that there are 3 components to attitudes: affective, behavioral, cognitive - Affective: positive or negative evaluation of an attitude object - Behavioral: how you behave towards an attitude object - Cognitive: what you think/believe about an attitude object - The idea that attitudes  behavior: Do attitudes predict behavior? o Behaviors are not always consistent with attitude o No significant correlation is likely between a general attitude and specific behavior (Fishben & Ajzen). General attitudes predict general behavior (sum of many related behaviors) and specific attitudes predict specific behaviors. - Other factors also affect attitude - Theory of planned action o Own attitude towards a behavior o subjective norms o perceived behavioral control - Behavior  attitude o Cognitive dissonance (post-decision dissonance, forced compliance dissonance) o Self-perception theory - Affects o Attitudes without affects (stereotypes without prejudice) - Cognitive o Attitudes without cognitions o Ex: if asked ―why do you love me?‖ 2. Dimensionality of attitudes - Unidimensional: attitude is on a single dimension of either favorability or unfavorability towards an object, this is an affective response. Only takes into account how a person feels about an attitude object - Bidimensional: attitude is an affective and cognitive response. Therefore, there are two dimensions. - Attitudes are derived from: arousal and cognitions used to explain the arousal - But we’re not accurate at labelling arousal and it can be mislabelled. Ex; the scary bridge experiment. Contextual info important in labelling - TWO affective dimensions: o Good vs. bad on two dimensions: high good, high bad = ambivalence, low good, low bad = indifference. - Evaluative space model: dimensions are good, bad, and cognitive component - Tri-partition model: ABCs of attitudes - Non-dimensional: Fazio’s node model. Attitude objects are nodes in an associative network. Attitudes are links which connect attitude objects to an evaluation. The more a link is activated, the stronger it gets - Sillogistic model: 3. Strength of attitude - Strong attitudes o The more often an attitude is activated the stronger is will be  Fazio’s NODE model o More accessible o Therefore more likely to predict behavior  Fazio’s MODE model: even if the person does not have the motivation and ability to process information, if the attitude is strong more likely to lead to attitude activation and subsequently influence behavior o More likely to have been deeply-processed and self-generated information  Inoculation theory o More likely to have been learnt from experience rather than indirectly o Also more likely to be linked to the self (value-expressive) - Measure strength of attitudes by: o Response latency: faster response for stronger attitudes. Problems: individual differenc
More Less

Related notes for PSY320H1

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.