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BU PS 261

Professor Belle Spring 2011

Natural Selection the evolutionary process by which heritable traits that best enable organisms to survive and reproduce in particular environments are passed to ensuing generations
Evolutionary Psychology the study of evolution of cognition and behavior using principles of natural selection
Culture the enduring behaviors, ideas, attitudes and traditions shared by a large group of people and transmitted from one generation to the next
Norms standards for accepted and expected behavior. Norms prescribe 'proper' behavior
Personal Space the buffer zone we like to maintain around our bodies. Its size depends on our familiarity with whoever is near us
Gender the characteristics, whether biological or socially influenced, by which people define male or female
Empathy the vicarious experience of another's feelings; putting oneself in another's shoes
Aggression physical or verbal behavior intended to hurt someone. In laboratory experiments, this might mean delivering electric shocks or saying something likely to hurt another's feelings
Androgynous from ANDRO (man) and GYN (woman)--thus mixing both masculine and feminine characteristics
Gender Role a set of behavior expectations (norms) for males and females
Interaction a relationship in which the effect of one factor (such as bio) depends on another factor (such as environment)
Conformity a change in behavior or belief as the result of real or imagined group pressure
Obedience Acting in accord with a direct order or command
Compliance conformity that involves publicly acting in accord with an implied or explicit request while PRIVATELY DISAGREEING
Acceptance conformity that involves both acting and believing in accord to social pressure
Sherif's studies of Norm Formation Dark room--pinpoint of light moves around--asks how far it went--next day, same thing but w/2 others--after a few days, group opinion shifts so they all give the same answer--ONE YEAR later, they still give the group norm response
Autokinetic Phenomenon self (auto) motion (kinetic)--the apparent movement of a stationary point of light in the dark
The Werther Effect imitative suicidal behavior--after 'the sorrows of a young wether' (book) more men committed suicide after the character.
Asch's studies of Group Pressure seated 6th out of 7--asks which line (of 3) matches the original--1st two rounds, everyone gives the same answer, 3rd round your answer is different-- do you lie to group pressure? 3/4 conformed at least once--37% of responses were conforming
Milgram's Obedience Experiments authority v. conscience--teacher v. experimenter v. learner--65% of experimenters went to 450 volts (high as you can go)
Cohesiveness a "we feeling"--the extent to which members of a group are bound together, such as by attraction for one another
Normative influence conformity based on a person's desire to fulfill others' expectations: often to gain acceptance
Informational influence conformity occurring when people accept evidence about reality provided by other people
Culture people in more collectivist countries conform more than those in individualistic ones (China v. France)
Reactance a motive to protect or restore one's sense of freedom. Arises when someone threatens our freedom of action
Persuasion process by which a message induces change in beliefs, attitudes or behaviors
Central Route to Persuasion occurs when interested people focus on the arguments and respond within favorable thoughts
Peripheral Route to Persuasion Occurs when people are influenced by incidental cues, such as a speaker's attractiveness
Elements of Persuasion 1. the communicator 2. the message 3. how the message is communicated 4. the audience
credibility believability. A credible communicator is perceived as both expert and trustworthy
sleeper effect a delayed impact of a message that occurs when an initially discounted message becomes effective, as we remember the message but forgot the reason for discounting it.
Attractiveness having qualities that appeal to an audience. An appealing communicator (often someone similar to the audience) is most persuasive on matters of subjective preference
Primacy effect other things being equal, information presented first usually has the most influence
recency effect info presented last sometimes has the most influence less common than primacy effects
Channel of Communication the way the message is delivered--whether face-to-face, in writing, on film, or in some other way
Two-step flow of communication the process by which media influence often occurs through opinion leaders, who in turn influence others
Need for cognition the motivation to think and analyze. Assessed by agreement with items such as "the notion of thinking abstractly is appealing to me" and disagreement w/ "I only think as hard as I have to"
Cult (also called new religious movement) a group typically characterized by (1) distinctive ritual and beliefs related to its devotion to a god or a person, (2) isolation from the surrounding "evil" culture, and (3) a charismatic leader. (A sect, by contrast, is a spinoff from a major religion)
Attitude inoculation exposing people to weak attacks upon their attitudes so that when stronger attacks come, they will have refutations available
Group two or more people who, for longer than a few moments, interact with and influence one another and perceive themselves as "us"
co-participants co-participants working individually on a noncompetitive activity
social arousal boosts performance on easy tasks and hurt performance on difficult tasks
social facilitation 1) original meaning: the tendency of people to perform simple or well-learned tasks BETTER when others are present. 2) Current meaning: the strengthening of dominant responses in the presence of others
Factors of arousal 1. Evaluation apprehension 2. Distraction 3. Mere presence
Social Loafing the tendency for people to exert less effort when they pool their efforts toward a common goal when they are individually accountable
Free riders people who benefit from the group but give little in return
Deindividuization people lose self-awareness, w/loss of individuality and restraint in group situations
Factors of Deindividuization group size, physical anonymity, arousing and distracting activities
Group polarization group-produced enhancement of members' pre-existing tendencies; a strengthening of the members' average tendency, not a split within the group
Risky Shift Phenomenon group decisions are usually riskier than individuals i.e. question (what would your likeliness be?)
Social Comparison evaluating one's opinions and abilities by comparing oneself with others
Pluralistic Ignorance A false impression of what most other people are thinking or feeling; or how they are responding
Groupthink the mode of thinking that persons engage in when concurrence-seeking becomes so dominant in a cohesive in-group that it tends to override realistic appraisal of alternative courses of action
Leadership the process by which certain group members motivate and guide the group
Task leadership leadership that organizes work, sets standards, and focuses on goals
Social leadership leadership that builds teamwork, mediates conflict, and offers support
Transformational leadership leadership that, enabled by a leader's vision and inspiration, exerts significant influence
Misinformation effect incorporating "misinformation" into one's memory of the event after witnessing an event and receiving misleading information about it
Reactance a motive to protect or restore one's sense of freedom. Reactance arises when someone threatens our freedom of action
Social Psychology the scientific study of how people think about, influence, and relate to one another
Social Neuroscience An integration of biological and social perspectives that explores the neural and psychological bases of social and emotional behaviors
culture the enduring behaviors, ideas, attitudes, and traditions shared by a large group of people and transmitted from one generation to the next
Social Representations socially shared beliefs--widely held ideas and values, including our assumptions and cultural ideologies. Our social representations help us make sense of our world
Hindsight bias the tendency to exaggerate, after learning an outcome, one's ability to have foreseen how something turned out, also known as the "I-knew-it-all-along phenomenon"
theory an integrated set of principles that explain and predict observed events
hypothesis a testable proposition that describes a relationship that may exist between events
Field Research research done in natural, real-life settings outside the laboratory
Correlational Research the study of the naturally occurring relationships among variables
Experimental research the study of the naturally occurring relationships among variables
Experimental Research Studies that seek clues to cause-effect relationships by manipulating one or more factors (independent variables) while controlling others (holding them constant).
Random Sample survey procedure in which every person in the population being studied has an equal chance of inclusion
Framing the way a question or an issue is posed; framing can influence people's decisions and expressed opinions
Independent variable the experimental factor that a researcher manipulates
dependent variable the variable being measured, so called because it may depend on manipulations of the independent variable
random assignment the process of assigning participants to the conditions of an experiment such that all persons have the same chance of being in a given condition
mundane realism degree to which an experiment is superficially similar to everyday situations
experimental realism degree to which an experiment absorbs and involves its participants
deception in research, an effect by which participants are misinformed or misled about the study's methods and purposes
demand characteristics cues in an experiment that tell the participant what behavior is expected
informed consent an ethical principle requiring that research participants be told enough to enable them to choose whether they wish to participate
debriefing in social psychology, the postexperimental explanation of a study to its participants. Debriefing usually discloses any deception and often queries participants regarding their understandings and feelings
spotlight effect the belief that others are paying more attention to one's appearance and behavior than they really are
illusion of transparency the illusion that our concealed emotions leak out and can be easily read by others
self-concept a person's answers to the question, "Who am I?"
self-schema Beliefs about self that organize and guide the processing of self-relevant information
possible selves images of what we dream of or dread becoming in the future
social comparison evaluating one's abilities and opinions by comparing oneself with others
individualism the concept of giving priority to one's own goals over group goals and defining one's identity in terms of personal attributes rather than group identifications
collectivism giving priority to the goals of one's groups (often one's extended family or work group_ and defining one's identity accordingly
interdependent self construing one's identity in relation to others
planning fallacy the tendency to under-estimate how long it will take to complete a task
impact bias overestimating the enduring impact of emotion-causing events
immune neglect the human tendency to underestimate the speed and the strength of the "psychological immune system," which enables emotional recovery and resilience after bad things happen
differing attitudes differing implicit (automatic) and explicit (consciously controlled) attitudes toward the same object. Verbalized explicit attitudes may change with education and persuasion; implicit attitudes change slowly, with practice that forms new habits
self-esteem a person's overall self-evaluation or sense of self-worth
self-efficacy a sense that one is competent and effective, distinguished from self-esteem, which is one's sense of self-worth. A bombardier might feel high self-efficacy and low self-esteem
locus of control the extent to which people perceive outcomes as internally controllable by their own efforts or as externally controlled by chance or outside forces
learned helplessness the sense of hopelessness and resignation learned when a human or animal perceives no control over repeated bad events
self-serving bias the tendency to perceive oneself favorably
self-serving attributions a form of self-serving bias; the tendency to attribute positive outcomes to oneself and negative outcomes to other factors
defensive pessimism the adaptive value of anticipating problems and harnessing one's anxiety to motivate effective action
false consensus effect the tendency to overestimate the commonality of one's opinions and one's undesirable or unsuccessful behaviors
false uniqueness effect the tendency to underestimate the commonality of one's abilities and one's desirable or successful behaviors
group-serving bias explaining away outgroup members' positive behaviors; also attributing negative behaviors to their dispositions )while excusing such behavior by one's own group)
self-handicapping protecting one's self-image with behaviors that create a handy excuse for alter failure
self-presentation the act of expressing oneself and behaving in ways designed to create a favorable impression or an impression that corresponds to one's ideals
self-monitoring being attuned to the way one presents oneself in social situations and adjusting one's performance to create the desired impression
priming activating particular associations in memory
Belief Perseverance persistence of one's initial conceptions, as when the basis for one's belief is discredited but an explanation of why the belief might be true survives. i.e. babies w/ colic due to bottle milk--perceptions stay
controlled processing "explicit" thinking that is deliberate, reflective, and conscious
Automatic processing "implicit" thinking that is effortless, habitual, and without awareness--corresponds to "intuition"
Over confidence Phenomenon tendency to be more confident than correct--to overestimate the accuracy of one's beliefs
Confirmation Bias tendency to search for info that confirms one's preconceptions
Heuristic a thinking strategy that enables quick, efficient judgements
Representative Heuristic the tendency to presume, sometimes despite contrary odds, that someone or something belongs to a particular group if resembling a typical member. i.e. linda the bank teller/active feminist
Availability Heuristic A cognitive rule that judges the likelihood of thinking in terms of their availability in memory. If instances of something come readily to mind, we presume it to be common place. i.e. shark attacks, famous v. unfamous
Counterfactual thinking imagining alternative scenarios and outcomes that might have happened, but didn't. i.e. olympians--1.3.2 on happiness scale
Illusory correlation conception of a relationship where none exists, or perception of a stronger relationship that actually exists
illusion of control the idea that chance to our influence i.e. gambling
regression toward the average: statistical tendency for extreme scores or extreme behavior to return toward one's average. i.e high-->low test scores, "Harold" arriving to school late
Misattribution mistakenly attributing a behavior to the wrong source. i.e. sexual interest due to friendliness
Attribution theory analyzes how we explain people's behavior. i.e. attributing behavior to internal dispositions or external situations
Spontaneous trait Inference effortless, automatic inference of a trait after exposure to someone's behavior
Situational attribution attributing behavior to the environment i.e. poor student -->physical and social circumstances
Dispositional attribution attributing behavior to a person's disposition and traits: i.e. poor student -->lack of motivation and ability
Fundamental Attribution Error tendency for observers to underestimate situational influences and over estimate dispositional influences upon other's behavior
Self-awareness a self-conscious state in which attention focuses on oneself. It makes people more sensitive to their own attitudes and dispositions
Self-fulfilling prophecy a belief that leads to its own fulfillment. i.e. told stocks will soar--then they do
Behavior Confirmation a type of self-fulfilling prophecy whereby people's social expectations lead them to behave in ways that cause others to confirm their expectations. i.e. telephone convo w/ attractive woman=nice woman
attitude a favorable or unfavorable evaluative reaction toward something or someone (often rooted in one's beliefs, and exhibited in one's feelings and intended behavior)
Implicit Association Test (IAT) a computer-driven assessment of implicit attitudes. The test uses reaction times to measure people's automatic associations between attitude objects and evaluative words. Easier pairings are taken to indicate stronger unconscious associations
Role a set of norms that defines how people in a given social position ought to behave
foot-in-the-door phenomenon the tendency for people who have first agreed to a small request to comply later with a larger request
low-ball technique a tactic for getting people to agree to something. People who agree to an initial request will often still comply when the requester ups the ante. People who receive only the costly request are less likely to comply with it.
cognitive dissonance tension that arises when one is simultaneously aware of two inconsistent cognitions. Dissonance may occur when we realize that we have acted contrary to our attitudes or made a decision favoring one alternative despite reasons favoring another
insufficient justification reduction of dissonance by internally justifying one's behavior when external justification is "insufficient"
self-perception theory the theory that when we are unsure of our attitudes, we infer them much as would someone observing us, by looking at our behavior and the circumstances under which it occurs
Overjustification effect the result of bribing people to do what they already like doing; they may then see their actions as externally controlled rather than intrinsically appealing
self-affirmation theory people often experience a self-image threat, after engaging in an undesireable behavior; and can compensate by affirming another aspect of the self. threaten people's self-concept and they will either refocus or do good deeds in another domain
Prejudice a preconceived negative judgment of a group and its individual members
Stereotype a belief about the personal attributes of a group of people. Stereotypes are sometimes over generalized, inaccurate, and resistant to new information
Discrimination unjustified negative behavior toward a group or its members
Racism 1. An individual's prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory behavior toward people of a given race or 2. institutional practices (even if not motivated by prejudice) that subordinate people of a given sex
Social Dominance Orientation a motivation to have one's group dominate other social groups
Authoritarian Personality a personality that is disposed to favor obedience to authority and intolerance of outgroups and those lower in status
Ethnocentric believing in the superiority of one's own ethnic group and having a corresponding disdain for other groups
Realistic Group Conflict theory the theory that prejudice arises from competition between groups for scarce resources
Ingroup Bias the tendency to favor one's own group
Outgroup "them" group we perceive as distinctly different from our own
Ingroup "us" group of people sharing a sense of belonging
Social identity theory categorize--we put people into categories identify--associate ourselves w/certain groups and gain self-esteem
Social Identity the "we" aspect of a self-concept; the part of our answer to "Who am I?" that comes from our group memberships
Personal Identity Our sense of personal attributes and attitudes
Infrahumanization denying human attributes to outgroups
Terror management according to "terror management theory" people's self-protective emotional and cognitive responses (including adhering more strongly to their cultural world views and prejudices) when confronted with reminders of their mortality
Outgroup homogeneity effect perception of outgroup members as more similar to one another than are ingroup members. thus "they are alike; we are diverse."
own-race bias the tendency for people to more accurately recognize faces of their own race
Stigma consciousness a person's expectation of being victimized by prejudice or discrimination
group-serving bias explaining away outgroup members' positive behaviors also attributing negative behaviors to their dispositions (while excusing such behavior by one's own group)
just-world phenomenon the tendency or people to believe that the world is just and that people therefore get what they deserve and deserve what they get
Subtyping accommodating individuals who deviate from one's stereotype by thinking of them as "exceptions to the rule
Subgrouping accommodating individuals who deviate from one's stereotype by forming a new stereotype about this subset of the group
stereotype threat a disruptive concern, when facing a negative stereotype, that one will be evaluated based on a negative stereotype. Unlike self-fulfilling prophecies that hammer one's reputation into one's self-concept, stereotype threat situations have immediate effects
adaptation-level phenomenon the tendency to adapt to a given level of stimulation and thus to notice and react to changes from that level.
social comparison evaluating one's abilities and opinions by comparing oneself with others
Created by: megblauvelt