Social Psych 1

Colbey, Austyn, Flynn, and Chainey.
Explanations that people tend to
make to explain successes or
Can be analyzed with 3 sets of
-Internal vs. External
-Stable vs. Unstable
-Controllable vs. Uncontrollable
People will interpret their
environment in such a way as to
maintain a positive self-image.
•The tendency for an observer, when interpreting and explaining
the behavior of another person, to underestimate the situation
and to overestimate the personal disposition
•Personal disposition is…
Enduring systems of beliefs that can be examined on three
different levels:
Environment, peers, media, operant and classical conditioning all
influence our attitudes.
A way of being persuaded, by the arguments or actual content of
the message.
As opposed to the peripheral route which is being persuaded by
superficial cues (attractiveness or sound of voice)
Example: After watching a political debate you decide to vote for a
candidate because you agree with their opinions as opposed to
voting for them because they are attractive.
People’s tendency to comply
more readily with a large
request if they have already
agreed to a smaller favor
Example: a door-to-door
solicitor can first ask a person
to sign a petition then return a
few weeks later and ask the
person to make a donation
Cognitive dissonance theory
suggests that we have an inner
drive to hold all our attitudes and
beliefs in harmony and avoid
disharmony (dissonance)
Example: You don’t like to lie but
you are forced to lie for a friend
In order to avoid this, some
people adapt by changing their
attitude, the behavior, or creating
a new cognition.