First Semester Final Exam Review
Topics Covered
Social Psych
Critical thinking
Stress and Health
Nature and Nurture of
• Developing Person
Attributing Behavior to Persons or to
Attribution Theory: Fritz
Heider (1958) suggested
that we have a tendency
to give causal
explanations for
someone’s behavior,
often by crediting either
the situation or the
person’s disposition.
Fritz Heider
Attributing Behavior to Persons or to
A teacher may wonder whether a child’s
hostility reflects an aggressive personality
(dispositional attribution) or is a reaction to stress
or abuse (a situational attribution).
Dispositions are enduring
personality traits. So, if Joe is
a quiet, shy, and introverted
child, he is likely to be like
that in a number of
Napolitan and Goethals experiment at
Williams College
• They had students talk, one at a time, talk to a woman
who was either acting critical or was being warm. They
told half the students that she was being spontaneous
and told the other half the truth. What do you suppose
the effect of being told the truth was? NO EFFECT- if
friendly, they thought she was warm. If unfriendly,
believed she was cold. Thus, they thought her behavior
was dispositional rather than situational- even when
told her behavior was situational. FAE is universal.
However, does it occur more in Western countries or
East- Asian countries?
Who are we more likely to commit FAE
• When explaining our own
behavior, or the behavior
of those we know well
and see in varied
situations, we are
sensitive to how behavior
changes with the
• When explaining others
behaviors, we disregard
the situation and leap to
unwarranted conclusions
about personal traits.
Effects of Attribution
How we explain someone’s behavior affects how
we react to it.
Effects of Attribution
• Real life examples• Deciding whether a shooting was
malicious or self- defense ?
• Happily married couple- He/ she
are having a bad day;
• Unhappily Married couple- why
did I marry such a mean person?
• Political effects – Some people
blame New Orleans residents for
not evacuating before the
predicted 2005 Hurricane Katrina.
Others attributed their inaction
to their situation- to their not
being cars or bus transportation
A belief and feeling that predisposes a person to
respond in a particular way to objects, other
people, and events.
If we believe a person is mean,
we may feel dislike for the
person and act in an unfriendly
Attitudes Can Affect Action
Our attitudes predict our behaviors imperfectly
because other factors, including the external
situation, also influence behavior.
Democratic leaders supported Bush’s attack on Iraq under public pressure.
However, they had their private reservations.
Attitudes Can Affect Action
Not only do people stand for what they believe in
(attitude), they start believing in what they stand
D. MacDonald/ PhotoEdit
Cooperative actions can lead to mutual liking (beliefs).
Attitudes Guide Our Actions if
• Outside influences on what
we say and do are minimal
• Attitudes is specifically
relevant to behavior
• We are keenly aware of our
• How does this occur?
• Through central route
persuasion and peripheral
route persuasion
• Real life example- Al Gore’s filmInconvenient Truth changed some
minds through central route
persuasion- when interested
people focus on arguments and
respond with favorable thoughts
(took the scientific evidence)
Other persuasion techniques
include a faster peripheral routeincidental cues such as
endorsements by respected
• What to remember? You change
mind due to info- CRP; you
change mind due to person, PR
Small Request – Large Request
In the Korean War, Chinese communists
solicited cooperation from US army prisoners
by asking them to carry out small errands. By
complying to small errands they were likely to
comply to larger ones.
Foot-in-the-Door Phenomenon: The tendency
for people who have first agreed to a small
request to comply later with a larger request.
Foot in the door Phenomenon- Good
Deeds vs. Bad Deeds
• Good Deeds• Boost charitable
• Blood donation
• Product sales
• Bad Deeds• Hazing
• Zimbardo Experiment
• Abu Ghraib
Role Playing Affects Attitudes
Zimbardo (1972) assigned the roles of guards
and prisoners to random students and found
that guards and prisoners developed roleappropriate attitudes.
Originally published in the New Yorker
Phillip G. Zimbardo, Inc.
Actions Can Affect Attitudes
Why do actions affect attitudes? One
explanation is that when our attitudes and
actions are opposed, we experience tension.
This is called cognitive dissonance.
To relieve ourselves of this tension we
bring our attitudes closer to our actions
(Festinger, 1957).
Role Playing Affects Attitudes
• Role- a set of make
explanations about a
social position, defining
how those in the position
ought to behave.
• Examples- soldier,
teacher, military
• “Fake it until you make it”
• Example- Zimbardo
Details of Zimbardo Experiment
• College students
volunteered to spend
time in a laboratory
situation, half guards,
half prisoners? Guards
succumbed to the
situation- same thing
happened at Abu
Ghraib Prison
Cognitive Dissonance
• Proposed by Leon
Festinger; says when our
attitudes and actions
don’t coincide, we
experience tension, or
cognitive dissonance.
Thus, we bring our
attitudes in line with our
actions. Ex- WMD’s in
Iraq, public changing
Cognitive Dissonance
Social Influence Examples
• People stare upwards and
passersby do the same
• Put your own money in tip
• Laughs, cough, yawning
• We are natural mimics
• This is called the
chameleon effectunconsciously mimicking
other’s expressions,
postures, and voice tones
• We get happier around
happy people and sadder
around sad people
Shootings and Suicide
• After Columbine, every
state experienced copycat
• Marilyn Monroe suicidesuicides increased by 200
that month
• Saddam Hussein
execution- dozens of boys
accidently hung
themselves, after slipping
nooses around their own
Group Pressure and Conformity
• Conformity- adjusting one’s
behavior of thinking to
coincide with a group standard
• Solomon Asch ExperimentActors pick the wrong line and
then people are coerced by
conformity to pick something
they know is wrong
• Alone- less than 1% made
• In Groups- wrong 33% of the
Conditions that Strengthen Conformity
One is made to feel incompetent or insecure.
The group has at least three people.
The group is unanimous.
One admires the group’s status and
One has no prior commitment or response.
The group observes one’s behavior.
One’s culture strongly encourages respect for a
social standard.
Reasons for Conformity
Normative Social Influence: Influence resulting
from a person’s desire to gain approval or avoid
rejection. A person may respect normative
behavior because there may be a severe price to
pay if not respected. Example- GBN Hazing Case
Informative Social Influence: The group may
provide valuable information, but stubborn people
will never listen to others. Example- Ku Klux Klan
Informative Social Influence
Baron and colleagues (1996) made students do
an eyewitness identification task. If the task was
easy (lineup exposure 5 sec.), conformity was
low in comparison to a difficult (1/2 sec.
exposure) task.
Informative Social Influence
Baron et al., (1996)
Stanley Milgram designed a
study that investigates the
effects of authority on
Courtesy of CUNY Graduate School and University Center
People comply to social
pressures. How would they
respond to outright
Stanley Milgram
Both Photos: © 1965 By Stanley Miligram, from the
film Obedience, dist. by Penn State, Media Sales
Milgram’s Study
Milgram’s Study: Results
Obedience is Highest When?
• Person giving the orders is
considered a legitimate
authority figure
• Authority figure
supported by prestigious
university (Yale higher
than CLC)
• Victim depersonalized or
at a distance, even in
another room
• No role models for
Real Life Examples
• German reserve
police officer story;
ordered in Poland500 men, only 15
• GBN Hazing Case
• Pledge of Allegiance
Lessons from the Conformity and
Obedience Studies
In both Ash's and Milgram's studies, participants
were pressured to follow their standards and be
responsive to others.
In Milgram’s study, participants were torn between
hearing the victims pleas and the experimenter’s
Group Influence- How is our behavior
affected by being a part of the group?
1. One person
affecting another
2. Families
3. Teams
4. Committees
Individual Behavior in the Presence of
Michelle Agnis/ NYT Pictures
Social facilitation: Refers
to improved performance
on tasks in the presence of
others. Triplett (1898)
noticed cyclists’ race times
were faster when they
competed against others
than when they just raced
against the clock.
If your good, you do
better, if your bad you do
Social Facilitation and Crowding
• Comedy routines seem
funnier when the room
is densely packed room
• Arousal triggered by
crowding amplifies
other reactions
Social Loafing
The tendency of an
individual in a group to
exert less effort toward
attaining a common
goal than when tested
individually (Latané,
Example- Kids in group
projects once they
identify the
Example 2- Tug of War
The loss of self-awareness and self-restraint in
group situations that foster arousal and anonymity.
Example- class colors; GBN Hazing case
Mob behavior
Effects of Group Interaction
Group Polarization
enhances a group’s
prevailing attitudes
through a discussion. If
a group is like-minded,
discussion strengthens
its prevailing opinions
and attitudes. Examplepolitics; racist jokes
A mode of thinking that occurs when the desire
for harmony in a decision-making group
overrides the realistic appraisal of alternatives.
Attack on Pearl Harbor
Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis
Watergate Cover-up
Chernobyl Reactor Accident
Power of Individuals- Minority
Margaret Bourke-White/ Life Magazine. © 1946 Time Warner, Inc.
The power of social influence
is enormous, but so is the
power of the individual.
Non-violent fasts and
appeals by Gandhi led to the
independence of India from
the British.
Key Point- a minority that
holds its position is far more
successful at swaying
majority than a minority that
Social Relations
Social psychology teaches us how we relate to
one another through prejudice, aggression, and
conflict to attraction, and altruism and
Simply called “prejudgment,” a prejudice is an
unjustifiable (usually negative) attitude toward
a group and its members. Prejudice is often
directed towards different cultural, ethnic, or
gender groups.
Components of Prejudice
1. Beliefs (stereotypes)
2. Emotions (hostility, envy, fear)
3. Predisposition to act (to discriminate)
Reign of Prejudice
Prejudice works at the conscious and [more at]
the unconscious level. Therefore, prejudice is
more like a knee-jerk response than a conscious
How Prejudiced are People?
Over the duration of time many prejudices
against interracial marriage, gender,
homosexuality, and minorities have decreased.
Experiments that illustrate
unconscious Prejudice
• Implicit Racial Associationswords associated with races
• Unconscious Patronizationwhite teachers score black
essays higher
• Race influenced perceptionsComputer simulation where
people shot faster and more if
suspect was black
• Black Faces- death sentences
given to defendants that had
stereotypically Black features
• Nine out of ten white
respondents were slow
when responding to words
like “peace” or “paradise”
when they saw a black
individual’s photo
compared to a white
individual’s photo
(Hugenberg &
Bodenhausen, 2003).
Examples of public and private
Black motorists stopped more and
searched more than whites by police
in CA
9/11 aftermath- 4/10 admitted
prejudice against Muslims
Gays and lesbian discrimination
Most women still live in more
poverty than men.
About 100,000,000 women are
missing in the world. There is a
preference for male children in
China and India, even with sexselected abortion outlawed.
Social Roots of Prejudice
• Prejudice develops when
people have money, power,
and prestige, and others do
not. Social inequality
increases prejudice.
• Example- Blame- thevictim- dynamic- poverty
produces higher crime rate;
which someone can use to
justify discrimination of
those who live in poverty
• Allport- believes this causes
self- blame and anger
In and Out Groups
Ingroup: People with whom one shares a common
identity. Example- Cubs fans Outgroup: Those
perceived as different from one’s ingroup. ExampleWhite Sox Fans Ingroup Bias: The tendency to favor
one’s own group.
Mike Hewitt/ Getty Images
Scotland’s famed “Tartan Army” fans.
Cognitive Roots of Prejudice
One way we simplify our world is to categorize.
We categorize people into groups by
stereotyping them.
Michael S. Yamashita/ Woodfin Camp Associates
Foreign sunbathers may think Balinese look alike.
Cognitive Roots of Prejudice
In vivid cases such as the 9/11 attacks, terrorists can
feed stereotypes or prejudices (terrorism). Most
terrorists are non-Muslims.
Cognitive Roots of Prejudice
© The New Yorker Collection, 1981, Robert Mankoff from All Rights Reserved.
The tendency of people to believe the world is
just, and people get what they deserve and
deserve what they get (the just-world
Aggression can be any physical or verbal behavior
intended to hurt or destroy.
It may be done reactively out of hostility or
proactively as a calculated means to an end.
Research shows that aggressive behavior emerges
from the interaction of biology and experience.
Genetic Influences: Animals have
been bred for aggressiveness for
sport and at times for research.
Twin studies show aggression may
be genetic. In men, aggression is
possibly linked to the Y
Neural Influences: Some centers
in the brain, especially the limbic
system (amygdala) and the
frontal lobe, are intimately
involved with aggression. Case
Study- 15 death row inmates all
suffered head injuries
Biochemical Influences: Animals with diminished
amounts of testosterone (castration) become docile,
and if injected with testosterone aggression increases.
Prenatal exposure to testosterone also increases
aggression in female hyenas.
The Psychology of Aggression
Four psychological factors that influence aggressive behavior are:
Dealing with aversive events
Learning aggression is rewarding
Observing models of aggression
Acquiring social scripts
Aversive Events
Studies in which animals and humans experience unpleasant events reveal that
those made miserable often make others miserable. Frustration Aggression
Example- A principle in which frustration (caused by the blocking of an attempt to
achieve a desired goal) creates anger, which can generate aggression.
Jeff Kowalsky/ EPA/ Landov
Ron Artest (Pacers) attack on Detroit Pistons fans.
Learning to Express and Inhibit Aggression
When aggression leads to
desired outcomes, one learns
to be aggressive. This is shown
in both animals and humans.
Cultures that favor violence
breed violence. Scotch-Irish
settlers in the South had
more violent tendencies
than their Quaker Dutch
counterparts in the
Northeast of the US.
• Inhibiting Aggressionreplacement programs
have brought re- arrest
rates of gang members
by improving
learning to control
anger, and encouraging
moral reasoning.
TV violence, pornography, and society
• Pornography leads
some men to accept
the rape myth- the
idea that some
woman invite or
enjoy rape
Observing Models of Aggression
Sexually coercive men are
promiscuous and hostile in
their relationships with
women. This coerciveness
has increased due to
television viewing of Rand X-rated movies.
Experiment- men who
watch X rated films- find
partner not as attractive,
woman’s friendliness as a
come on
Do Video Games Teach or Release
The general consensus on
violent video games is that, to
some extent, they breed
Adolescents view the world
as hostile when they get into
arguments and receive bad
grades after playing such
Experiments- Mortal Kombatarousal and hostility rose;
Myers does not believe in
catharsis hypothesis- the idea
we feel better if we blow off
 by pursuing our self-interest
and not trusting others, we
can end up losers
Person 1
Choose A
Person 2
Choose B
Choose A
 Conflict has occurred in society
since the beginning of times,
but psychologists see it as a
perceived incompatibility of
actions, goals, or ideas. This
occurs due to our pursuing of
our own interest rather than
the collective well being. This
leads to social traps.
Social trap
Choose B
Social Relations
Person 1
Person 2
Choose B
Choose A
Choose A
Choose B
 Social trap
 by pursuing our
self-interest and
not trusting
others, we can
end up losers
Enemy Perceptions
• Those in conflict have a
curious tendency to
form diabolical images
of one another. This
leads to mirror image
perception- as we see
our side as ethical and
peaceful, the other side
views us as evil and
3 components to attraction
• Proximity- geographic
nearness; occurs due to the
mere exposure effectrepeated exposure to novel
stimuli increases liking of them
• We prefer people who
also look like us which is
the idea of the mirror
images. (works when we
3 components to attraction
• Physical attractivenessstudy; people liked good
looking dates the best;
predicts popularity;
dating; unrelated to selfesteem
• Universal Aspects- men
prefer youthful
appearance; woman to
those they deem mature,
dominant, affluent
• Both prefer symmetrical
3 components to attraction
• Similarity- prefer
people who have our
attitudes, beliefs, and
• Reward theory- simply
states we will continue
relationships that offer
more rewards than
Social Relations- Romantic
 Two factor theory of emotionadrenaline makes the heart
grow fonder- explain study
 Passionate Love
 an aroused state of intense
positive absorption in another
 usually present at the
beginning of a love relationship
 Companionate Love
 deep affectionate attachment
we feel for those with whom
our lives are intertwined
Social Relations
 Equity
 a condition in which people receive from a
relationship in proportion to what they give to it
 Self-Disclosure
 revealing intimate aspects of oneself to others
 Altruism
 unselfish regard for the welfare of others
Altruism + Examples
• Darley + Latane- attributed inaction to
situational factors- the presence of
others; They believe we will only help if
we 1- interpret situation; 2- interpret as
emergency; 3- assume responsibility;
• Why did Genovese murder occur?
Diffusion of responsibility- any single
person less likely to help
• Best odds of helping- appears to need
and deserve help, similar to us, just
observed someone being helpful, not in
a hurry, small town or rural area, feeling
guilty, not preoccupied, are in a good
Social Relations
 The decision-making process for bystander
Social Relations
 Bystander Effect
 tendency for any
given bystander
to be less likely to
give aid if other
bystanders are
Social Relations- Psychology of
 Social Exchange Theory
 the theory that our social behavior is an
exchange process, the aim of which is to
maximize benefits and minimize costs
 Social Responsibility Norm- an
expectation that people will help those
dependent upon them- example religious
Social Relations- Peacemaking
 Occurs through cooperationNeed to have
 Superordinate Goals
 shared goals that override
differences among people
and require their
cooperation; Examplepatriotism after 9/11- 90%
approval rating
 Communication- third party
mediator- win, win rather
than win-lose; ExampleRelationship troubles
Social Relations
 Graduated and Reciprocated Initiatives
in Tension-reduction (GRIT)
 a strategy designed to decrease
international tensions
 one side announces recognition of mutual
interests and initiates a small conciliatory act
 opens door for reciprocation by other party
 Example- Kennedy’s gesture of stopping
atmospheric nuclear tests began a series of
conciliatory acts that culminated in 1992
atmospheric ban- treaty

First Semester Final Exam Review