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PSYC 221 – Fall 2013Study Guide for Exam 1A word of advice: read the textbook chapters thoroughly (but you can skip over any sectionthat I tell you to skip; see below). The chapters that will be covered are 1, 3, 4, and 5.I) The Science of Social Psychology- The basics – what is social psychology designed to do? What are social psychologists interested in studying? Social psychology- the scientific study of how people affect and are affected by others. It Aims from a broad understanding of the social factors that influence how human beings think, act, and feel. Focuses on normal adult human beings, some study children and mild mental illness. Concerned with the effect of other people on our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.ABCS- affect (how people feel inside), behavior (what people do, their actions) and cognition (what people think about)Behaviorism- theoretical approach that seeks to explain behavior in terms of learning principles, without reference to inner states, thoughts, or feelings.Freudian psychoanalysis- theoretical approach that seeks to explain behavior by looking at the deep unconscious forces inside the person.- Focus on scientific method- Concerned about the effects of personal and situational influencesWhy do they study social psychology? -Curiosity about people- Experimental philosophy- the pursuit of knowledge about fundamental matters such as life, death, meaning, reality, and truth- Making the world better- Advantages to research vs. lay-theories/folk-theoriesBasic Research- research that focuses on a general understanding of basic principles that can be applied to many different problems.Applied research- research that focuses on solving particular practical problems.Theories- unobservable constructs that are linked together in some logical way.- Theoretical perspectives (e.g., power of situation, evolutionary psych, positive psych)Power of the situation- situation matters affects includes color of walls, seasons, and setting, temperature, more than personality.Evolutionary Psych- “survival of the fittest”Positive psych- we should be studying positive emotions not just anxiety and mortality rates.-Emotions (joy and pride), behaviors (cooperation, love), and outcomes (life satisfaction)- Theories vs. phenomenaPhenomena are the things that we have observed, while theories are our interpretations or explanations of the phenomena.- Validity (internal vs. external)Internal Validity- the extent to which changes in the independent variable caused changes in the dependent variable.External Validity- the extent to which the findings from a study can be generalized to other people, other settings, and other time periods.- Correlation vs. causationCorrelation- the relationship or association between two variables.Correlational approach- a nonexperimental method in which the researcher merely observes whether variables are associated or related.Causation- changes in one variable they measured directly caused changes in theother.- Methods for studying behavior/mental processes/physical processesII) Social Cognition- Conscious vs. automatic mind (also called “rational” & “associative”)Conscious- more able to control it and more able to change it.- Slow, reasoning, effortful/taxing, deliberate/controllable, flexible.Automatic- Fast, evaluations based on gut instinct, effortless, unintentional, stable/stubborn.- Automaticity- a process that can be carried out rapidly and without effort- Embodied cognition (“embodiment”)- mind-body connection, sensitive to physical, environmental cues. (Ex. Sitting in hard chairs-> tough negotiation, heavy backpack-> weighty decisions, etc.)- Priming (“spreading activation of related mental nodes”)- Schemas – what are they?(a) Types of schemas- cognitive structures representing ideas in the mind(b) Stability over time, impact behavior, thoughts, emotional response(c) Impact on person perception, impression, how to behave in certain situations- Behavioral confirmation (self-fulfilling prophesy)A prediction that causes it to come true due to simple fact that the prediction was made, beliefs influence our actions.- The cognitive miser perspective –Faster judgments/conclusions based on small amounts of information, we form impressions about people within seconds of meeting them.(a) Use of heuristics, mental shortcuts, to ease cognitive load(b) Systematic errors and biases (e.g., “gambler’s fallacy”)Gambler’s fallacy- tendency to believe that a chance event is affected by previous events, will “even out”-randomness doesn’t appear random; we often see patterns that aren’t really there.- Confirmation bias & Motivated reasoningConfirmation bias- the tendency to notice and search for information that confirms one’s beliefs and to ignore information that disconfirms one’s beliefsMotivated reasoning- when weighing evidence, we seek preferred conclusions, confirm existing schemata and worldview.- Social comparison- compare to other people especially in ambiguous situations. (goal to make self look good) It is not possible for everyone to be above the mean. (a) Positive illusions (self-serving bias & optimistic bias)- Self- serving bias- a pattern in which people claim credit for success but deny blame for failure.(b) Accuracy for perceiving others, but not for self- Reducing bias:i) Metacognition/mindfulness, self-referencing- thinking about thinking; reflecting on one’s own thought processes.- Attributions – what are they? How we assign causes for behavior, events, and consequences.(a) Internal vs. external; stable vs. unstable(b) Explanations for behavior, events, success/failure(c) What variables increase likelihood of making an attribution? Unexpected/salient events, painful events, successes/ failures, personalism(d) Fundamental Attribution Error- the tendency for observers to attribute other people’s behavior to internal or dispositional causes and to downplay situational causes(e) Actor-Observer Bias- the tendency for actors to make external attributions and observers to make internal attributionsIII) The Self/Personality- The specific effect of self-awareness – self- awareness enables humans to develop elaborate sets of beliefs about themselves.- Self-serving biases- Self-verification (compared to self-enhancement)- motivation to maintain self-schema. - Self-esteem – appraisal of self as good/bad. Associated with a “clear understanding” of the self.)(a) Ingredients, outcomes,


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UMD PSYC 221 - Study Guide for Exam 1

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