CHAPTER 3 – PERCEPTION, ATTRIBUTION, AND JUDGEMENT OF
Perception: The process of interpreting the messages of our sense to provides order and
meaning to the environment.
Perception has three components:
1. The perceiver
o Influenced by experience
o Perceptual defense: The tendency for the perceptual system to defend
the perceiver against unpleasant emotions, i.e. see what we want to
2. The target
3. The situation
o Perception of the target changes with the situation.
Social Identity Theory
People form perceptions of themselves based on their characteristics and memberships n
• Our personal identity is based on our unique personal characteristics, like interest,
• Our social identity is based on our perception that we belong to various social groups,
like gender, nationality, religion, etc.
Perceptual selectivity, constancy, and consistency.
• Primary and recency effects
o Primary effect: The tendency for a perceiver to rely on early cues or
o Recency effect: The tendency for a perceiver to rely on recent cues or
• Reliance on central traits
o Central traits: Personal characteristics of a target person that are part
of a particular interest to a perceiver.
• Implicit Personality Theories
o Personal theories that people have about which personality
characteristics go together.
o The tendency for perceivers to attribute their own thoughts and
feelings to others.
o The tendency to generalize about people in a certain social category and ignore variations among them.
Dispositional attributions: Explanations for behavior based on an actor’s personality or
Situational attributions: Explanations f