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Chapter 1

Psychology 2720A/B Chapter Notes - Chapter 1: Gordon Allport, Proverb, Interpersonal Attraction

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Richard Sorrentino

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Psych 2720A
Chapter 1: Introducing Social Psychology
What is Social Psychology?
social = involving other people
The Science of Social Behaviour
social psychology = science of social behaviour
According to Gordon Allport, social psychology is the scientific study of how
individualsʼ thoughts, feelings, and behaviours are influenced by people
the definition has 4 key aspects:
influenced by other people
thoughts, feelings, and behaviours
individualsʼ perspective
scientific study
Influenced by other people
study of how other people affect us
ie. research on aggression, altruism, intergroup relations, and interpersonal
other people can influence us without having to be physically present
Thoughts, feelings, and behaviours
social psychologists study on how we store and use information, and examine
peopleʼs feelings and emotions such as prejudice against certain groups
ultimate goal is to understand as to why various kinds of actions toward other
people occur o do not occur (conformity, aggression, helping, and discrimination)
Individualʼs Perspective
whatever one believes to be the other personʼs motive will determine on how one
social psychologists are interested on the subjective perspective of things
a terms that is often used to refer to individualsʼ perceptions of a situation is social
constructs - how individuals personally interpret or perceive a social situation
even when studying groups, social psychologists still focus on the individual
members of that group
Scientific Study
various methodologies that social psychologists use to test theories and
How Other People Affect Us
the decisions we make as individuals are still directly or indirectly influenced by others
how we interpret events, how we feel about ourselves, and how we behave are all
socially influenced
Other People Affect How We Interpret Events
the analysis of a situation or an event that requires immediate attention is
influenced by the people around us
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