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Flashcards in Social Psychology Test 1 Deck (44):

What is Cognitive Bias?

Inferences about people or situations that are drawn in an illogical fashion


ex: Conformation bias or Hindsight bias "I knew it all along"


What are attributions?

An explanation of why yourself or others are engaged in a certain behavior

ex: dancing at a party vs. dancing on a dinner table


What is an Internal attribution?

An attribution based on stable traits about the person. 

ex: personality... being crazy for dancing on a table.


What is an External attribution?

An attribution based on situational/ environmental factors

ex: location (party)


What is the Fundamental Attribution Error (FAE)?

Tendency to make dispositional attributions for others’ behavior, even when plausible situational explanations exist

ex: ignoring the fact that people didn't choose to write about Castro.


What is Actor- Observer Bias?

Tendency to make internal attributions for others behaviors

ex: They are an ass

Tendency to make external attributions for our own behaviors

ex: The dog had rabies


What is Sedikides study of attributing credit?

People who were in the better group attributed the success to internal reasons & people in the poor group attributed it to external reasons.


What is the Self- Serving Biases?

Taking credit for successes (internal attributions) OR blaming other people/factors for failures (external attributions)


What is a Heuristics?

Mental shortcuts that provide quick estimates about the likelihood of events.



What is the Availability Heuristic?

Tendency to estimate likelihood of event by how easily it comes to mind

ex: only having to come up with 3 examples vs. 6


What is the Simulation Heuristic?

Tendency to be influenced by the ease with which you can imagine (or mentally simulate) an event 

ex: missing a flight by 2 min (almost there)


What is the concept of Anchoring & Adjustment?

When people anchor on to what was suggested and then adjust it accordingly

Tendency to be influenced by a starting point (anchor) when making decisions

ex: 3000mil vs. 6000mil

ex: How happy will you be in 20 days?

ex: Drinking


What is the Conjunctive Fallacy?

Believing the probability of 2 events being true is more likely than just 1 being true

ex: specifics make it easier to believe


What is the Representativeness Heuristic?

Tendency to estimate the likelihood of event by how well it matches your expectations

ex: flipping all heads vs. heads and tails


What is False Uniqueness?

Underestimating the number of people who share our positive characteristics


What did Thomas Malthus believe about population?

If things are left unchecked populations grow exponentially ex:rabbits

But there are checks and balances on population. 


What did Charles Darwin believe?

Proposed evolution by natural selection. Not natural selection but the means of it


What is a Gene?

A section of DNA on a specific location of a chromosome.

Ex: gene for hair color


What are Alleles?

A version of a gene that codes for specific protein

ex: Blonde or brunette hair color


What is humility?

Being humble and admitting you don't know everything


What is the Naturalistic Fallacy?

It occurs in nature so it must be good

ex: eating placenta after birth


What is the Moralistic Fallacy?

If it is terrible, it is not true.

Immoral things dont happen in nature.


What is the Confirmation Bias?

The tendency for people to favor information that confirms their beliefs or hypotheses.


What is Operationalization?

To make something measurable.

Define a concept in a way that other researchers can use in their studies.

Tell people how you measured the concept.


What are the 3 principles of natural selection?

1. Variation

2. Variation affects survival & reproduction

3. Variation is heritable


What is Evolutionary Psychology?

Applies principles of natural selection to the human brain

How are brains have been shaped by natural selection.


What is a proximate Question?

A question that examines actual states of an organism and immediate cues to the environment. Most areas of Psy. 

ex: Who? What? How? Which? 


What is an ultimate question?

Questions that observe evolutionary pressures WHY QUESTIONS!!! Long range causes


What is the order of human evolution?

Australopithecine --> Homo Habilis --> Homo Erectus --> Homo Heidelbergensis (Neanderthals) --> Homo Sapiens


What are the functions of emotion?

Motivational Signal our intentions/ commitments to others.


What is Franks Commitment Theory?

Blushing signals trustworthiness


Robert Franks idea that love is...

A contract

ex: Landlord/ Tennant


What was Buss conclusion about sexual emotion and jealousy?

Men find sexual infidelity worse

Women find emotional infidelity worse


What was Kuhle conclusion about questions asked by men and women?

Men asked more about sex and denied feelings

Women asked emotional questions and denied having sex


What is Cuckoldry?

Investing in another mans offspring


What is indignation?

strong displeasure of something considered unjust

ex: Turning down $2 just so they don't get $8


Explain Ketelaar and Au Ultimatum guilt game w/t 2 trials

Guilty people were more generous the second time Non-guilty people did not make a generous offer the second time.


True or false Happiness (good) is stronger feeling than bad.



What is Haselton and Nettle's Paranoid optimist concept?

Paranoid: We avoid dangerous things that make us sick

Optimist: Positive self illusion, think we have more control than we actually do and our future will be bright. 

Causes cautiousness and motivation.


What is Hamilton's rule? What does it relate to?

Hamilton’s rule: r b > c r = relatedness b = benefit to helpee (relative) c = cost to helper (me)

It relates to helping your kin more than a random stranger!


What is Humility?

The ability to admit that it is ok to not know the answer. 


What is the concept inheritance?

Hint: Big muscles...

Traits that you develop during your life time do not get passed on to your off spring. 


Who is Alfred Russell Wallace? 

Also came up with the concept of natural selection.


What is heritability?

The laws of genetics...

1. Traits do not blend

2. Traits are passed on independently