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Flashcards in Social Psychology Glossary Deck (52)
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Actor-Observer Effect

In casual attribution, the tendency for the observer to over-estimate the effects of dispositional factors when making attributions about an actor's behavior but to overestimate the effects of situational factors when making self-attributions


Attitude Inoculation

A method of reducing the effectiveness of a persuasive message that is based on the medical model. It involves giving the recipient of the message arguments against his own position and weak counterarguments (refutations against those arguments).


Autokinetic Effect

a perceptual phenomenon in which a stationary point of light appears to move in a dark room. Used to study conformity to group norms.


Balance Theory

uses principle of cognitive consistency to explain attitude change and focuses on the relations among 3 entities: (P)erson, (O)ther person, and a third person, object or event (X). Relations may be balanced or not depending on the pattern of likes or dislikes among the entities.


Barnum Effect

tendency to accept vague, general descriptions of one's self (e.g. horoscope) to be accurate.


Base Rate Fallacy

tendency to underutilize or ignore relevant statistical (base rate) data and rely on irrelevant information when making probabilistic judgements about an event or characteristic.


Bases of Social Power
French and Raven

6 bases of social power that induce compliance in another person: 1) coercive 2) reward 3) expert 4) legitimate 5 referent 6) informational


Bystander Apathy

tendency of people to not intervene emergency situations when other people are present. 3 Factors; 1)social comparison 2) evaluation apprehension 3) diffusion of responsibility


Catharsis Hypothesis

predicts that an act of aggression reduces an individual's arousal level which then decreases the likelihood that he will act aggressively again in the near future. Not backed by research.


Characteristics of the Communicator

research on attitude has confirmed that credible communicators are more persuasive and that 1 factor that contributes to credibility is trustworthiness (e.g., if the person is arguing agains his best interest he may seem more trustworthy).


Cognitive Dissonance Theory

purposes that inconsistencies in cognition that produce discomfort (dissonance) that motivates the individual to reduce the dissonance by changing his cognitions.


Confirmation Bias

tendency to seek or pay attention to information that confirms one's hypothesis or current beliefs and to ignore disconfirming information.


Deindividuation Model

state of relative anonymity that allows an individual to feel unidentifiable. Associated with higher levels of anti-social behavior because the deindividuated person's behavior is no longer controlled by guilt, fear or evaluation, or other inhibitory controls.


Effects of Crowding

Crowded conditions tend to enhance positive experiences and increase the unpleasantness of negative experiences. Men seem to be more stressed by crowded conditions than women and are more likely to react with increased aggressiveness. apparently because men require more personal space.


Effects of Media Violence

research generally confirms that viewing media violence increases aggression by providing viewers with models for aggressive behaviors. Impacts attitude as well; frequent viewing of violent media linked to overestimating the likelihood that one will be a victim.


Effects of Pornography

exposure to mild erotica may reduce aggressiveness; exposure to violent themes tends to increase aggressive behaviors towards women as well as increase acceptance of rape myths and the adoption of callous attitudes towards sexual violence.


Elaboration Likelihood Model

cognitive theory of attitude change that distinguishes between 2 information processing routes: Central & Peripheral. Use of Central Route is likely when listener is motivated and has ability to process the information contained in the message and the listener is neutral or slightly negative in mood. Peripheral is used when listener is unmotivated and lacks ability to process the information, and or is in a positive mood.


Emotion-in-Relationship Model

provides an explanation for the experience of strong emotions in close relationships and proposes that there is an innate mechanism that generates emotion in response to unexpected events that disrupts ongoing sequences of behaviors.


Epinephrine Studies
Singer & Schachter

supported the predictions of self-perception theory by confirming > when internal cues are insufficient or difficult to interpret, people acquire information about themselves by observing their external behaviors and/or the context in which those behaviors occur.


Equity Theory

predicts that motivation (i.e. motivation to remain in a relationship) is affected by a comparison of the input/outcome ratios of oneself and one's partner.


Field Theory

describes human behavior as being a product of interdependent factors in the person and his physical and social environment.


Fundamental Attribution Bias

the tendency for an observer to overestimate dispositional causes and underestimate situational causes when making attributions about an actor's behavior.


Frustration-Aggression Hypothesis

aggression is motivated by by frustration, and predicts that frustration leads to aggression in the presence of aggressive cues.


Gain-Loss Effect

predicts that people tend to be most attracted to individuals who show increasing for liking them and tend to be least attracted to individuals who show decreasing liking for them.


Gender Differences in Affiliation

research shows women generally spend more time than men engaged in conversation; are more likely to talk to people of the same gender; may affiliate more than men do in public places.


Kobassa et al.

personality trait of hardiness acts as a protective factor against stress and has 3 primary characteristics: 1) commitment (sense of purpose and involvement in one's life events/relationships) 2) Challenge (openness to new experiences and change) 3) Control (belief that one has the ability to control or manage life's events)



are short mental shortcuts people use when making attributions and other social judgements and include: representativeness, availability, simulation, anchoring and adjustment heuristics. May result in errors.


Intraindividual Conflict
Lewin & Miller

4 motivational conflicts: 1) approach-approach 2) avoidance-avoidance 3) approach-avoidance 4) double approach-avoidance. Double approach-avoidance (having to choose between 2 goals both having positive and negative affects) is most difficult.


Jigsaw Method

method of learning in which assignments must be completed by teams when each team member is assigned a different part of the project. Improves intergroup relations / self-esteem / cooperation / and academic achievement esp for members of minority groups.


Law of Attraction

we are attracted to others who have similar attitudes because interacting with those individuals is more rewarding than interacting with people who have dissimilar attitudes. Therefore, more likely to generate positive effect.