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Canada (161,962)
Psychology (1,899)
PSY220H5 (98)
Chapter 14

Ch. 14: Groups

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Ulrich Schimmack

Ch 14 Groups importance of companionship and of living in groups is taken as given in psychology The Nature and Purpose of Group livinggroup life offers large primates some notwellunderstood advantages in the struggle for survival generally maintained that life with others offered our human ancestors protection from predators efficiency in food acquisition assistance with child rearing and defense against human aggressors also generally maintained that these benefits are so crucial to survival that we have a psychological need to be with others and belong to a group When isolated from others people typically experience great stress and become extremely upset many who are kept socially isolated for a sufficiently long time lose their minds a group is a collection of individuals who have relations to one another that make them interdependent to some significant degree more of a group with more frequent interactions and are more likely dependent on one anotherSocial Facilitation Initial research the fastest bicycle racing times were recorded when cyclists competed directly against one another on the same track at the same timethus Triplett believed that the presence of others tended to facilitate human performancenot the best test there is drafting to improve times and the type of competition Triplett conducted what is widely regarded as social psychologys first experimentinvited a group of 40 children to his laboratory and had them reel in fishing lines as fast as they could 3 tests by themselves and 3 more tests with otherswhat Triplett found was the presence of other appeared to facilitate human performance Social facilitation initially a term for enhanced performance in the presence of others now a broader term for the effect positive or negative of the presence of others on performancesubsequent experiments reinforced Tripletts findings and extended them in tow important ways1 the same effects were obtained when others present were not doing the same thing but were merely present as an audience of passive observers2 Also the same effect was also observed in a vast number of animal species indicating this phenomenon was quite general and fundamental unfortunately not all of the relevant findings conform to this patternex Students at Harvard and Radcliffe asked to refute philosophical arguments Found the students provided higherquality arguments when working alone than in the presence of another student the presence of others has also been shown to inhibit performance on arithmetic problems memory tasks and maze learningResolving the contradictions Zajoncs theory zajonc argued that the presence of others indeed the mere presence of others tends to facilitate performance on simple or welllearned tasks but to hinder performance on difficult or novel tasks three components1 the mere presence of other makes a person more aroused
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