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Chapter 13

PSY 1305 Chapter Notes - Chapter 13: Columbine High School Massacre, Stanford Prison Experiment, Cognitive Dissonance

Course Code
PSY 1305
Danielle Young

of 6
Psychology Notes on Chapter 13
Chapter 13
Social psychology
is the scientific study of how we think about, influence and relate to
one another
Attribution Theory
explains someone’s behavior by crediting either the situation or the
person’s disposition
Fundamental Attribution Error
is the tendency, when analyzing others’ behaviors, to
overestimate the influence of personal traits and underestimate the effects of the
Napolitan and Colleagues
In 1979, students attributed behavior of woman to personal traits, even when
they were told that her behavior was part of the experiment.
are feelings influenced by beliefs, that predispose reactions to objects, people
and events.
Peripheral Route Persuasion
uses incidental cues to try to produce fast but relatively
thoughtless changes in attitudes.
{Actions can modify attitudes}
Foot-in-the-door Phenomena
involves compliance with a large request after having
agreed to a small request.
Role Playing
involves acting a social part by following guidelines for expected behavior
Zimbardo Prison Experiment
--otherwise known as the Stanford Prison Experiment--
--it took only 6 days for it to become out of control; it was supposed to last 2
Guards sadistic
Prisoners depressed
Cognitive Dissonance Theory
is when attitudes do not fit with actions, tensions are
often reduced by changing attitudes to match actions.
-we act to reduce the discomfort (dissonance) we feel when two of our thoughts
(cognitions) clash
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--brain regions become active when people experience cognitive dissonance
is the act of adjusting our behavior or thinking
Autonomic Mimicry
Chartrand and Colleagues (1999)
--chameleon effect
--mimic and feel what other feel
Suggestibility and mimicry sometimes lead to tragedy
--copycat violence threats after Colorado;s Columbine High School shootings
--suicide contagion (5%)
ASCH’s Conformity Experiments
--group conformity
--37% of people conformed
Normative Social Influence
to gain approval
Informative Social Influence
to accept others’ opinions as new information
Stanley Milgram’s Experiments
--people obeyed orders even when they thought they were harming another
--strong social influences can make ordinary people conform to falsehoods or
exhibit cruel behaviors
--can explain great evil acts that a=occur in societies (Nazis)
-- people were willing to administer fatal shocks if they were told to by an
authority figure
--obedience was highest when:
a) Authority was nearby
b) Experiment was supported by a prestigious institution
c) Victim was depersonalized/ at a distance
d) No role model for defiance was available
Social Facilitation
(Triplett) is when the presence of others arouses people and
improves performance on easy or well-learned tasks.
Social Loafing
is the tendency for people in a group to exert less effort when pooling
their efforts towards attaining a common goal rather than when individually
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a) Less accountable
b) Individual contribution does not matter
c) Lack of identification or membership
involves the loss of self-awareness and self-restraint occurring in group
situations that foster arousal and anonymity; thrives in many different settings.
Group Polarization
discussions with like-minded people strengthen members’
prevailing beliefs and attitudes
people are driven by a desire for harmony within a group
Individual Power
minority can sway majority
is a negative attitude
1. Beliefs (stereotypes)
2. Emotions
3. Predisposition to actions
overt and intentional; this has decreased over time
utilizations of unconscious biases; subtle prejudice remains
-may not be conscious of
-implicit racial associations
-unconscious patronization
Social Roots of Prejudice:
social inequalities: have often developed attitudes that justify status quo
just-world phenomena: good is rewarded and evil is punished
stereotypes: rationalize inequalities
is a negative behavior
-through social identities people associate themselves with others
-evolution prepares people to identify with a group
who we are
who we are not
Ingroup Bias
favoring of our own group
Scapegoat Theory
proposes that when things go wrong, finding someone to blame can
provide an outlet for anger.
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find more resources at oneclass.com