- refers to the psychological position that people react to things differently depending on their immediate environment.
- For example, a person who tries coffee for the first time in a busy or loud establishment may immediately sense that they do not like coffee at all. But, if they are in a quiet group of immediate friends who are all enjoying their coffee together, this person may like their coffee, all because their environment made them perceive it a different way.
seems to be the most important incentive and motivating force of social behavior.
- suggests most behavioral differences we know about between males and females is the result of cultural stereotypes about gender (how males and females are supposed to act) and the resulting social roles that are taught to young people.
- Expectations for the ways in which people are expected to behave in specific situations. These expectations are created and defined by the societies in which the people live, which means that different societies have different social roles (and therefore, different expectations for the ways people are "supposed to act")
Technically speaking, attribution is the process by which people use information to make inferences about the causes of behavior or events. Simply put, this is how we go about inferring behavior (our own and those of others). For example, if you take an exam and you do well but a friend of yours fails, you might say that you did well because you are smart but your friend failed because he partied all night and didn't study. In this case, you "attributed" your success to an internal attribution (you're smart) but "attributed" your friend's behavior to an external attribution (partied all night).
Situational attributions also known as an external attribution
when someone attributes a person’s behavior to some external cause or factor operating within the situation.
Dispositional attributions also known as an internal attribution
when someone attributes a behavior to some internal cause, such as a personal trait, motive, or attitude.
Fundamental Attribution Error
- The tendency to give more attention to dispositional factors than is appropriate for a situation.
- Imagine this situation, you are at school and someone you know comes by, you say hello, and this person just gives you a quick, unfriendly "hello" and then walks away. How would you attribute this situation -- why did this person act this way? If you react to this situation by saying the person is a "jerk" or an "ass", then you have made the fundamental attribution error; the tendency for an observer, when interpreting and explaining the behavior of another person (the actor), to underestimate the situation and to overestimate the personal disposition. Maybe the person was having the worst day of their life, just found out a loved one died, failed a test and was feeling devastated, etc. In this case, the situation may have caused them to act in a way that was different than their normal happy self. But, you, as a normal observer, would instead attribute their behavior to them as a person...acted that way because that is the type of person they are.
- the tendency to attribute one's own behavior primarily to situational factors and the behavior of other primarily to dispositional.
- refers to people's tendency to attribute positive outcomes to personal factors, but attribute negative outcomes to external factors. In other words, "If it's a success, it's because of me. If it's a failure, it's because of someone or something else."
- For example, if I met my sales target, it's because I'm a great salesperson. But if I did not meet my sales target, it's because the economy is bad.
proximity, similarity, and physical attractiveness
strong factors affecting how people are attracted to one another
- a physical or geographic closeness; a major influence on attraction.
- One reason this proximity matters is because of the “mere-exposure effect” where we have a tendency to feel more positively towards a stimulus as a result of repeated exposure to it.
- one type of "grouping rule" that we, as humans, follow in an effort to make sense of our basic sensations and the world around us. We follow these very specific rules nconsciously, but they are very important for our everyday survivial. One grouping principle or rule is "similarity" which refers to the tendency for humans to group together objects or stimuli that seem similar to each other.
- For example, what do you see here: $$$$$ 88888 !!!!! Most people would say they see 5 dollar signs followed by 5 number 8's, and 5 exclamation points. But why not see this as 15 items that mean nothing together, or random symbols and numbers? The reason is that we group similar items together to try and make sense of them or find some pattern.
attract to someone with good looks.
Sternberg's Triangular Theory of Love
three component--intimacy, passion, and commitment--singly and in various combination, produce seven different kinds of love.
- refers to those who likes to be in a loving relationship that leads to romance, physical attraction and sexual consummation.
- Aren't new relationships great? You know that giddy feeling you get when you first fall in love? If you have intense feelings (positive feelings) toward the other person to the point of really being wrapped up in the other person, you have passionate love. This doesn't have to fade over time, but it often does. It's not realistic to expect this heightened state of emotion and passion to be maintained over a long period of time...but it sure is nice!
refers to those feelings in a relationship that promote closeness, bondedness, and connectedness.
refers to the commitment component that consists of (1) a short-term aspect, the decision that one loves another person, and (2) a long-term aspect, a commitment to maintaining that one love over time.
- consists of intimacy and commitment.
- This type of love is often found in marriages in which the passion has gone out of the relationship, but a deep affection abd commitment remain.
- zero passion
- couples who complain of that lack of "spark" or attraction
- a combination of intimacy and passion.
- Romantic lovers are bonded emotionally (as in liking) and physical through passionate arousal.
- zero commitment
- hooking up with your close friend without expecting anything
- consist only passion and is often what is felt as “love at first sight.” Without developing intimacy or commitment, infatuated love may disappear suddenly.
- physiological and emotional drives that lead to romance, physical attraction, and sexual consummation
- that dream guy one-time hook-up
- the only type of love that includes all three components—intimacy, passion, and commitment. Consummate love is the
- most complete form of love, and it represents the ideal love relationship for which many people strive but which apparently few achieve. Sternberg cautions that maintaining a consummate love may be even harder than achieving it. He
- stresses the importance of translating the components of love into action. "Without expression," he warns, "even the greatest of loves can die."
- that perfect relationship with strong emotional, sexual, and mental connections
- Changing or adopting a behavior or an attitude in an effort to be consistent with the social norms of a group or the expectations of other people.
- defined as adjusting one's behavior or thinking to match those of other people or a group standard. There are lots of reasons why people conform, including the desire/need to fit in or be accepted by others and maintaining order in ones life. For example, when you go to class, do you sit in a chair like other students or sit in the aisle? Do you face the front of the room like everyone else or do you sit facing the back wall? Why? Well, according to Muzafer Sherif (he was one of the most influential conformity researchers in psychological history), "When the external surroundings lack stabile, orderly reference points, the individuals caught in the ensuing experience of uncertainty mutually contribute to each other a mode of orderliness to establish their own orderly pattern."
milgram's classic obedience study
- One of the most famous studies of obedience in psychology in 1963
- Stanley Milgram, a psychologist at Yale University, conducted an experiment focusing on the conflict between obedience to authority and personal conscience.
- Milgram selected participants for his experiment by advertising for male participants to take part in a study of learning at Yale University. The procedure was that the participant was paired with another person and they drew lots to find out who would be the ‘learner’ and who would be the ‘teacher’. The draw was fixed so that the participant was always the teacher, and the learner was one of Milgram’s confederates (pretending to be a real participant).
- The learner (a confederate called Mr. Wallace) was taken into a room and had electrodes attached to his arms, and the teacher and researcher went into a room next door that contained an electric shock generator and a row of switches marked from 15 volts (Slight Shock) to 375 volts (Danger: Severe Shock) to 450 volts (XXX).
asch's classic study of conformity
- Asch believed that the main problem with Sherif's (1935) conformity experiment was that there was no correct answer to the ambiguous autokinetic experiment.
- Asch (1951) devised what is now regarded as a classic experiment in social psychology, whereby there was an obvious answer to a line judgment task. If the participant gave an incorrect answer it would be clear that this was due to group pressure.
- Solomon Asch (1951) conducted an experiment to investigate the extent to which social pressure from a majority group could affect a person to conform.
- Using the line judgment task, Asch put a naive participant in a room with four to six confederates. The confederates had agreed in advance what their responses would be when presented with the line task. The real participant did not know this and was led to believe that the other seven participants were also real participants like themselves. Each person in the room had to state aloud which comparison line (A, B or C) was most like the target line. The answer was always obvious. The real participant sat at the end of the row and gave his or her answer last. In some trials, the seven confederates gave the wrong answer. There were 18 trials in total and the confederates gave the wrong answer on 12 trails (called the critical trials). Asch was interested to see if the real participant would conform to the majority view.
The Bystander Effect
- A social factor that effects prosocial behaviors; As the number of bystanders at an emergency increases, the probability that the victim will receive help decreases, and the help, if given, is likely to be delayed.
- a social phenomenon in which a person (or persons) are less likely to offer help to another person (or persons) when there are more people around who can also provide assistance. Many people believe that, when there is an emergency and lots of people are present, the people in need are more likely to get assistance. However, this is not the case. Rather, the more people there are who can help, the less likely each person is to offer help. Thus, when in a group, people are less likely to offer help than when they are alone.
Diffusion of responsibility
The feeling among bystanders at an emergency that the responsibility for helping is shared by the group, making each person feel less compelled to act than if he or she alone bore the total responsibility.
A Self Fulfilling Prophecy
- a prediction that causes itself to come true due to the simple fact that the prediction was made. This happens because our beliefs influence our actions.
- For example, if a woman thinks that her husband will leave her for another woman, she will act in ways that will directly or indirectly cause her belief to come true. She might get jealous easily and make a fuss about him being friends with other women. She might pick fights whenever she suspects that he is cheating on her, or she might go through his personal things to look for evidence of cheating. Eventually, her actions will put a strain on their marriage, and her husband just might leave her, causing her prediction to come true.