Psychology 46-339 Social notes

22 views6 pages
Published on 19 Apr 2013
School
University of Windsor
Department
Psychology
Course
PSYC 3390
Professor
Unit%3%Notes:%Social%Psychology%
%
Attitude%Formation%
attitudes!are!defined!as!enduring!systems!of!beliefs!that!can!be!examined!on!three!different!levels:!!
cognitive!(how!we!think!or!reason!through!an!attitude)!
emotional!(how!we!feel!regarding!an!attitude)!
behavioral!(how!we!act!on!an!attitude)!
%
Origins%of%Attitudes%
research!has!indicated!there!are!several!ways!in!which!we!acquire!attitudes!
one!of!our!earliest!agents!of!attitude!formation!are!our!parents,!later!followed!by!our!peers!and!
the!media!
four!major!sources!of!attitude!formation!are:!
classical2conditioning:!associating!behaviors!and!attitudes!as!"good"!or!"bad"!(i.e.!it's!good!to!
tell!the!truth,!it's!bad!to!steal)!!
operant2conditioning:!being!rewarded!or!punished!for!behavior!and!attitudes!(i.e.!being!
praised!for!telling!the!truth!or!being!punished!for!stealing!something)!!
cognitive2appraisals:!weighing!logical!arguments!in!determining!your!attitude!!
observational2learning:!learning!attitudes!through!peer!behavior!and!the!media!
%
Persuasion%
persuasion%is!an!attempt!to!change!a!person's!attitudes!
research!has!indicated!there!are!several!key!components!that!make!messages!more!persuasive,!
the!persuasive!communicator!and!the!persuaded!audience.!
!
the!persuasive2message!has!several!variables:!
familiarity:!messages!are!more!persuasive!if!we!are!familiar!with!the!product!or!information!!
repetition:!the!more!a!message!is!repeated!(especially!if!it!is!complex),!the!more!persuasive!it!
is!!
two8sided2arguments:!both!sides!to!an!argument!are!presented!!
emotional2appeals:!commercials,!especially,!are!more!persuasive!if!they!appeal!to!the!emotions!!
arguments2that2run2counter2to2the2communicator's2interests:!messages!that!seem!to!go!against!
the!interests!of!the!person!speaking!tend!to!be!more!persuasive!
%
the!persuasive2communicators!tends!to:!
show!expertise!!
be!trustworthy!!
be!attractive!!
be!similar!to!the!audience!!
come!from!health!professions!!
research!has!indicated!that!when!food!and!music!are!added!to!messages,!their!persuasiveness!
increases!
!
the!persuaded2audience!tends!to!have!two!characteristics:!
low!self‐esteem:!low!sense!of!self‐worth!!
high!social!anxiety:!a!high!need!to!fit!into!society!!
!
Leon%Festinger:%%Cognitive%Dissonance%
the!theory!of!cognitive2dissonance!is!proposed!by!Leon!Festinger!
Festinger!states!that!when!we!have!two!contradictory!beliefs!we!feel!anxiety!
for!example,!we!know!how!to!fix!our!car!but!we!bring!it!to!a!mechanic!to!fix‐‐we!will!attempt!to!
reduce!our!anxiety,!called!dissonance%reduction,!by!coming!up!with!a!reason!for!our!actions!
we!might!justify!the!mechanic!working!on!our!car!because!we!"don't!have!the!proper!tools"!or!
"don't!have!the!time!to!fix!it"!
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cognitive!dissonance!also!occurs!when!our!thoughts!and!behaviors!are!inconsistent!
a!person!knows!smoking!cigarettes!is!bad!for!his!health!but!smokes!them!anyway;!he!may!
rationalize!this!by!saying!"he's!not!smoking!that!much"!or!"evidence!is!contradictory!on!the!
effects!of!smoking!on!health"!
%
cognitive!dissonance!also!operates!on!the!idea!that!"you!get!what!you!pay!for"!!
the!thinking!that!something!that!costs!more!must!be!of!higher!quality!explains!this!
the!idea!behind!this!is!the!more!you!must!give!up!for!something!(money)!the!more!valuable!it!
must!be!(higher!quality)!
patrons!at!a!movie!matinee!will!more!likely!rate!the!movie!as!moderately!entertaining!whereas!
patrons!at!an!evening!performance!will!rate!it!significantly!higher!or!lower!because!they've!paid!
more!for!the!movie!
%
Balance%Theory%
balance2theory%is!also!used!to!explain!our!attitudes!and!anxiety!related!to!people!we!know.!There!
are!three!possible!states!in!balance!theory:!
balance:!when!someone!we!like!holds!the!same!attitudes!as!we!do!!
imbalance:!when!someone!we!like!holds!a!contradictory!attitude!to!ours!!
nonbalance:!when!someone!we!don't!like!holds!a!contradictory!attitude!to!ours!!
!
Interpersonal%Attraction%
studies!conducted!among!college!students!have!indicated!that!the!number!one!thing!males!look!
for!in!a!long‐term!interpersonal!relationship!is!looks!
the!number!one!thing!females!look!for!is!personality!
proximity,!or!the!physical!closeness!of!one!person!to!another,!is!the!most!important!characteristic,!
according!to!research!
%
Other%Factors%in%Attraction%
there!are!several!other!factors!involved!in!interpersonal!attraction:!
attitudinal2similarity:!research!suggests!we!are!more!attracted!to!people!who!share!the!same!
attitudes!as!we!do!!
the2"Romeo2and2Juliet"2effect:!early!in!a!relationship,!parental!disapproval!can!actually!intensify!
feelings!of!interpersonal!attraction!!
propinquity:!attraction!is!likely!to!develop!between!people!in!close!proximity!because!they!will!
see!more!of!the!other!person's!inner!qualities!!
playing2hard2to2get:!playing!hard!to!get!is!actually!seen!as!an!undesirable!attitude;!devotional!
behavior,!or!channeling!attention!to!only!one!person,!is!seen!as!most!desirable!
%
Body%Language%
body!language!has!been!studied!with!varying!results!
most!research!indicates!that!the!eyes!can!express!when!someone!is!paying!attention!or!lying!
crossed!arms!and!legs!can!be!signs!of!defensiveness!
rapporting!is!the!unconscious!act!of!mirroring!the!body!posture!of!someone!you're!talking!to;!if!
you!cross!your!arms,!the!person!talking!to!you!may!do!the!same!thing!
%
Eye!movements!correspond!to!how!we!access!parts!of!the!brain!
Where!a!person!looks!when!thinking!can!indicate!whether!they!are!recalling!information,!making!
it!up,!telling!the!truth!or!telling!a!lie.!
!
Personal%Space%
personal2space%is!the!imaginary!area!we!keep!around!ourselves!to!be!comfortable!in!varying!social!
situations!
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