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Chapter 7

Chapter 7-Attitudes and Attitude change.docx

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PSYC 241
Tara Mac Donald

CH 7: ATTITUDES AND ATTITUDE CHANGE Oct /27/11 – Pg. 191-223 1. The Nature and - Attitudes are evaluations of people, objects or ideas and are made up of 3 parts: Origin of 1. Affective component: your emotional reactions toward the attitude object Attitudes 2. Cognitive component: thoughts and beliefs about the attitude object. 3. Behavioral component: actions or observable behaviour toward the attitude object. Where do attitudes come - Some attitudes come from our genes, that‟s why identical twins share more attitudes than from? fraternal twins. - Attitudes are indirectly related to our genetic makeup because they‟re related to temperament and personality, which are directly related to your genes. o Ex. People inherited a temperament and personality from their parents that made them like jazz more than rock-and-roll. Cognitively Based Attitudes - Cognitively based attitudes are based primarily about the properties of an attitude object Cognitively based attitudes o Ex. How many miles to the gallon of a car Affectively based attitudes - Affectively based attitude is based more on emotions and values than on objective appraisal of Affectively based attitudes pluses and minuses. o Ex. Liking a car regardless of how many miles it has. o People‟s feelings about abortion, death penalty, and premarital sex are often based more on their values than on a cold examination of the facts. o Liking the taste of chocolate even though it has a lot of calories. - Classical conditioning has a stimulus eliciting an emotional response is paired with a neutral Classical conditioning stimulus that doesn‟t until eventually the neutral stimulus elicits the emotional response by itself. - Operant conditioning: behaviours that we freely choose to perform become more or less Operant Conditioning frequent depending on whether they‟re followed by a reward or punishment o Ex. A 4-year old white girl goes to the playground and plays with an African girl, her father tells her „we don‟t play with that kind of child‟  the girl will associate interacting with Africans with disapproval - Affectively based attitudes: 1. Don‟t result from a rational examination of the issues 2. Not governed by logic 3. Linked to people‟s values so trying to change them challenges those values. Behaviorally based attitudes - Behaviorally based attitude comes from people‟s observations of how the behave toward an Behaviorally based attitude object - People sometimes don‟t know how they feel until they see how they behave. o Ex. If you ask a friend how much she likes to exercise and she says she likes it because she‟s always seems to be going for a run  attitude based on observation of her behaviour. Explicit vs. Implicit Attitudes - Explicit attitudes are ones we consciously endorse and can easily report - Implicit attitudes are involuntary, uncontrollable and unconscious - The Implicit Association Test (IAT) is when people categorize good and bad words with black or white faces. How do attitudes change? - Attitudes change in response to social influence Changing Attitudes by - When you can‟t find external justification for your behaviour, you attempt to find internal Changing Behavior: justification, by bringing the two cognitions (attitude & behaviour) closer together. Cognitive Dissonance - Counterattitudinal advocacy: saying is believing Revisited - To change the attitudes of a mass of people, you need persuasive communication which is a communication such as a speech or ad that advocates a particular side of an issue Persuasive Communications and Attitude Change - Hovland et al. conducted many studies on conditions under which people are most likely to be influenced by persuasive communications. Yale attitude change - Yale attitude change approach: Study source of communication, nature of communication approach and nature of audience The Central and Peripheral Routes to Persuasion - When is it best to stress factors central to the communication? (i.e. strength of arguments) - When is it best to stress peripheral factors to arguments‟ logic? (i.e. credibility or attractiveness of person delivering speech) Elaboration Likelihood - Elaboration likelihood model: under certain conditions, people are motivated to pay attention model to the facts, taking the central route to persuasion. Or they are persuaded if the surface Central Route to Persuasion characteristics of the message - i.e. if delivered by an expert – they‟re using the peripheral Peripheral Route to route to persuasion. Persuasion The Motivation to Pay Attention to the Arguments - Personal relevance of the topic determines whether people are motivated to pay attention to a communication. o Ex. College students were asked to listen to a speech arguing that all college seniors should be required to pass a comprehensive exam before they graduate o Half were told the university was seriously considering these exams, the other half were told these exams wouldn‟t be implemented until another 10 years. o 2 variables were introduced: strength of the arguments and prestige of the speaker o If issue was highly relevant, students were vastly influenced by the quality of the arguments, prestige didn‟t matter much o In low relevance, strength of the arguments didn‟t matter, but the speaker mattered. - People‟s motivation for a speech depends on their personality, some people enjoy thinking Need for Cognition things through more than others – high in the need for cognition - Central route persuasion had longer lasting effects. Emotion and Attitude change Fear Arousing Communications - Fear arousing communication: attempting to change people‟s attitudes by stirring up their fears - Does this work? It depends on whether the fear influences people‟s ability to pay attention to and process the arguments in a message o Ex. Group of smokers watched a lung cancer film, watched film and read pamphlet on how to quit smoking, or none. o The film & pamphlet condition did the best in reducing smoking because the film scared people but pamphlet reassured them that there was away to reduce this fear. Emotions as a Heuristic - Heuristic-Systematic model of persuasion : when people take the peripheral route to persuasion, they use heuristic (mental shortcuts – ex. Experts are always right) - Emotions and moods can determine our attitudes. If we feel good, we have a positive attitude about the product. Emotions and Different Types of Attitudes - Not all attitudes are created equally, some are based on beliefs about the attitude object whereas others are based more on emotions and values - Fight fire with fire: if an attitude is cognitively based, try to change it with rational arguments; if it‟s affectively based, try to change with emotional appeals. o Ex. To find out about which kind of ad – affectively based or cognitively based – is more effective o If ad was about a utilitarian product (air conditioner or vacuum), people‟s attitudes tend to be formed after an appraisal about the utilitarian (energy efficiency) aspects of the products. o People‟s attitudes about „social identity products‟ such as perfume or greeting cards reflect a concern with how they appear to others and are more affectively based. o People reacted most favourably to the ads that matched the type of attitude they had. If their attitude was cognitively based, the ads that focused on the utilitarian aspects were most successful. Culture and Different Types of attitudes - People in Western cultures base their attitudes more on concerns about individuality and self- improvement, whereas people in Asian cultures base their attitudes more on concerns about their standing in their social group. o Ex. Researchers created different ads for the same product that stressed independence
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