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Myers Social Psychology: Ch. 7 Essay

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persuasion
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the process by which a message induces change in beliefs, attitudes or behaviors – not inherently good or bad.
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central route to persuasion
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focusing on the content and the argument (explicit)
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peripheral route to persuasion
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focusing on cues that trigger automatic acceptance without much thinking (reflective)
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the elements of persuasion
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1) the communicator – who’s talking 2) the message – what they’re saying 3) how the message is communicated 4) the audience Why says What, but what Method, to Whom?
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credibility
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perceived expertise and trustworthiness (diminish after a month or so)
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sleeper effect
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a delayed impact of a message that occurs when an initially discounted message becomes effective, as we remember the message but forget the reason for discounting it after people forget the source or its connection with the message
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attractiveness
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We’re more likely to respond to those we like. Our liking opens us up to their communicator’s arguments (central route) or it may trigger positive associations with when we see the product later on (peripheral route) -similarity -physical attractiveness
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reason vs. emotion
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well-educated or analytical people are responsive to rational appeal. -Thoughtful, involved audiences often travel the central route, they are more responsive to reasoned arguments -Uninterested or bored audiences use peripheral route (do they like the communicator) -use good feelings or fear
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Discrepancy
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disagreement produces discomfort, and discomfort prompts people to change their way – so maybe greater disagreement will produce more change. however, disagreement may lead to the person to discredit the argument. – so maybe it won’t produce more change a *credible source* – one that it hard to discount – would elicit the most opinion change when advocating a position *greatly discrepant* from the recipient’s.
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one-sided vs two-sided appeals
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1 sided – most effective when distributed to people who already agreed 2 sided – most effective when distributed to people who initially disagreed, or if they’re aware of the opposite argument
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primacy vs recency
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primacy effect: info presented earlier is most persuasive recency effect: info presented later has the most influence (less common than primacy effect)
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channel of communication
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the way a message is delivered – either a face-to-face appeal, a written sign or document, a media advertisement – or in some other way
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two-step flow of communication
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the process by which media influence often occurs through opinion leaders, who in turn influence others
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life-cycle explanation
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attitudes change (for example, become more conservative) as people grow older
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generational explanation
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attitudes do not change, older people largely hold onto the attitudes they adopted when they were young. (most evidence supports this)
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need for cognition
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(analytical people) the motivation to think and analyze. assessed by agreement with items such as “the notion of thinking abstractly is appealing to me” and disagreement with items such as “I only think as hard as I have to”
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cult
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a group typically characterized by 1) distinctive ritual and beliefs related to its devotion to a god or a person, 2) isolation from he surrounding “evil” culture, and 3) a charasmatic leader
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social implosion
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(Rodney Stark and William Bainbridge) external sites weaken until the group collapses inward social, each person engaging only with other group members – cut off from friends and families, they lose sight of counterarguments.
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Psychotherapy setting
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provide: 1) a supportive, confiding social relationship 2) an offer of expertise and hope 3) a special rationale or myth that explains one’s difficulties and offers a new perspective 4) a set of rituals and learning experiences that promises a new sense of peace and happiness
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How to resist persuasion
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-challenging beliefs (middle attack their position) -developing counterarguments (attitude inoculation: exposing people to weak attacks upon their attitudes so that when stronger attacks come, they will have refutations available)