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Social Psychology Mid Term

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internal validity
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the extent to which a study examines the effects that it claims to examine (ex: study w/ random assignment has greater internal validity than non-random assignment)
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external validity
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the extent to which the findings of a study can be generalized to other settings, populations or time periods (more validity when results can be generalized widely)
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probability sampling
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procedures for which each case in the population has some known probability of being included in the sample and all segments of the population are represented in the sample
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simple random sample
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requires a complete list of all members of the population from which participants are selected using a random number table or a computer program
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stratified sample
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the population is divided into groups based on important features and participants are selected from among each group
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single item measure
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respondents are asked to agree or disagree (or undecided)
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likert scale
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multi-item scale: asks respondents to indicate their level of agreement or disagreement with several different statements related to a topic. scores from individual items are combined to create an overall index of attitudes toward the issue
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theory
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set of interrelated propositions that organize and explain a set of observed phenomena
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middle-range theories
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narrow, focused frameworks that explain a specific behavior
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theoretical perspectives
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broader than middle-range theories & attempt to explain a wide array of social behaviors in various settings
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role theory
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concerned with social statuses and social roles (knowing that someone is a mother tells us a lot about how to expect that person to behave)
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reinforcement theory
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-emphasizes the observable behavior of people. explains which behaviors are more or less likely to continue. asserts that social behavior is caused by external events, primarily pleasurable rewards (conditioning)
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social learning theory
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people acquire new behaviors through both conditioning and imitation
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social exchange theory
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views social interaction as exchanges of goods and services among individuals. views people as rational hedonists who will seek to maximize rewards and minimize costs
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equitable situation
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when the rewards they experience are commensurate with the costs they bear
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cognitive theory
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asserts that mental activities (cognitive processes: perception, memory, judgement, problem solving, decision making) are important for social behavior. this theory contrasts with the behaviorist view of the reinforcement theory. cognitive theory tries to make sense of behaviors based on underlying perceptions and meanings
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schema
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a basic sketch of what someone knows about something, and how they organize their understanding about that something
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principle of cognitive consistency
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states that people prefer to have consistent cognitions
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symbolic interaction
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people communicate using symbols. symbols have different meanings for different people because their meanings are negotiated through shared understandings
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role-taking
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an individual imagines how she or he looks from another persons perspective
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significant other
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person whose opinions and actions are important to the individual (a recruiter, person you are dating)
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evolutionary theory
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asserts that genes govern social behavior
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socialization
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the process through which individuals learn the skills, knowledge, values, motives and roles associated with their statuses in their culture. individuals learn language, expectations, and how to conform
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developmental perspective
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focuses on the unfolding of a child’s natural abilities
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social learning perspective
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children are believed to develop their own innate skills -children learn shared meanings and values from the group in which they are raised -both nature and nurture are required from development to occur
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interpretive perspective
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based on symbolic interactionism -socialization occurs through social interaction -children do not simply learn culture, but they come to understand it through interpretive reproduction, a process in which they acquire and reproduce culture through interaction
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agents of socialization
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family, peers, school systems
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attachment
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close relationships that produce security and stimulation, which are needed for the development of interpersonal skills
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borderwork
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made up of interactions aimed at strengthening gender boundaries, is often found in younger peer groups, which are likely to be stratified by gender -three forms: chasing games, cooties, gender takeover
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manifest functions
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obvious and intended consequences -include the dissemination of information, social integration, bestowal of status
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latent functions
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obvious and unintended consequences (hidden curriculum: teacher/student power dynamic, etc)
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goal displacement
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placing social control first and learning second
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shaping
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form of instrumental conditoning in which behaviors that remotely resemble the desired behavior are rewarded -as time goes by, rewards are only giving for the desired behavior, and the behaviors that only closely resemble the desired behavior are no longer rewarded
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extrinsic motivation
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children depend on someone else for their reward or punishment
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intrinsic motivation
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motivation derived from ones own personal goals
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self-reinforcement
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the act of judging ones own behavior
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internalization
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occurs when people adopt external behavior standards as their own -guides a persons behavior, even when there are no observers who can reward or punish the actor
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norms
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rules that guide behavior (waiting in line until its your turn)
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folkway
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type of norm that governs everyday conduct (saying you’re welcome). no punishment should be expected when a folkway is violated
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more
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norms with strong moral imperatives and strict enforcement
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anomie
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a notable lack of norms or expected behaviors that may result from not having a clear role or being thrust into a new social role that has unclear expectations
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anticipatory socialization
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development of knowledge, skills, and values related to a role that a person does not yet occupy
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self
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the individual who is both the source and target of the behavior
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self-schema
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the organized structure of attributes people ascribe to themselves (who we understand ourselves to be)
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self-differentiation
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ability to differentiate oneself from others
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social comparison
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the idea that only through comparing ourselves to others
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generalized other
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the norms and values that are perceived to be widely shared by the social group to which one belongs
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identities
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meanings attached to oneself and others to the self one’s self has more than one identity
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situated self
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the identity that one adopts within a specific situation
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self-efficacy
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a sense of competence
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self-serving bias
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strong tendency to have a higher opinion of ourselves than others have of us -claim credit for our successes and blame others for our failures
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false consensus effect
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we believe other people agree with us more than they actually do
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attribution
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the process a person uses to make inferences about the causes of attitudes or behavior -often based on schemas
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schema
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a basic sketch of what someone knows about something -help to organize complex information about people, groups, situations -guide how we percieve the social environment, organize memories, and make judgments
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categorization
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the tendency to locate stimuli as parts of groups rather than isolated incidents
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prototypes
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typical representations of a certain phenomenon -in a restaurant, when someone asks you what you want to eat, you might assume that person to be a server, based on your prototypical understanding of a server’s roles
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person schema
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cognitive structures about specific people or types of people for example a police officer, teacher, friend, or politician -shape our assessment of their behavior
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implicit personality theory
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certain personality traits go together -a person who is view as unpopular may also be viewed as unsociable, irritable, and moody
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the halo effect
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occurs when one person’s liking for another person influences the evaluation of behavior, beliefs or traits
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self schema
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structures that organize one’s thoughts, qualities and expectations regarding the self -if you consider yourself a religious person
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group schema
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aka stereotypes -cognitive structures about a specific group of people
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role schema
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designate which features are characteristics of a person occupying a specific role
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event schema
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aka scripts -structures regarding recurring social events -dictate the sequence of activities
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confirmatory bias
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results from asking questions and making inferences that are supportive of a schema without considering those that do not support it
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reconstructive memory
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claims that we cannot remember every detail, but we remember the important ones and let schemas do the rest -not always accurate
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confirmation bias
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we typically seek information that confirms our perceptions
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impression formation
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the process of organizing different information about a person into one coherent understanding
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trait centrality
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occurs when the presence (or absence) of a specific trait has a large influence on impression formation
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additive method
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people subconsciously assign scores to traits and add those scores together (the sum signifies the observer’s overall impression)
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averaging method
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people take the average of the trait scores to form an impression
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weighted averaging method
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the people take the average of trait scores to form an impression, but they also assign different weights to different traits, based on trait centrality
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heuristics
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mental shortcuts to select the most appropriate schema
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availability heuristic
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schema that is used the most often or is more easily accessible
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representative heuristic
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when someone tries to match a few known characteristics against an already existing schema -young people are reckless drivers
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anchoring and adjustment heuristics
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someone begins with a starting point and modifies that position until it seems appropriate
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attribution theory
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we observe someones behavior and infer backward to its causes
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dispositional attribution
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understand behavioral causes lie within the acting person
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situational attribution
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places behavioral causes in the person’s environment
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subtractive rule
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the observer subtracts the perceived situational forces from the implied personal disposition before inferring the strength of the personal disposition
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principle of covariation
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behavior is attributed to the factor that is both present when the behavior occurs and absent when the behavior does not occur -ex: teacher gives you a bad grade. this can be attributed to the actor (teacher), the object of behavior (you), or the context (the setting)
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consensus
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concerned with many actors related to one object (if all teachers give you bad grades)
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consistency
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concerned with one actor related to one object (if your teacher always gives you a bad grade)
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distinctiveness
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concerned with one actor and many objects (if your teacher gives all students bad grades –> distinctiveness is low)
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fundamental attribution error
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the observer disregarding the subtractive rule (the observer is neglecting to take into account the effects of the situation and subtract those effects before attributing the actor’s behavior to their internal disposition)
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focus of attention bias
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in focusing on certain aspects of a situation or interaction, we may not notice other factors that may be influential
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actor-observer difference
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tendency for an observer to make dispositional attributions while the actor makes situational attributions about the same behavior
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identity markers
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visible characteristics of individuals that lead others to attribute to them specific identities (male, black, etc)
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attitudes
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the predisposition to respond to an object in either a favorable or unfavorable manner (aka whether or not you like something)
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three processes of socialization
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instrumental learning observational learning internalization
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instrumental conditioning
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we develop attitudes based on our previous experiences
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schematic function
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you might organize your thoughts about a classmate and develop a construct of the type of person who skips class a lot -perhaps you would expect this person to be untrustworthy in other areas as well
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vertical attitude structure
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single set of primitive beliefs, or unquestioning acceptance of some authority
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horizontal attitude structure
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based on multiple sets of beliefs
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cognition
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individuals perceptions about attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors -for many people it is important that these three things do not contradict each other –> cognitive consistency
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sentiment relations
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the attitudes on has about people and objects
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unit relations
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refer to an association between two or more items – positive relations = ownership, friendship, causality – negative relations= ex spouses, competing sports teams, etc
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balance theory
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– if all relations are positive OR if one is positive and two are negative = balanced state & cognitive consistency -all other cases= unbalanced state
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cognitive dissonance
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psychological state of tension resulting from conflicts between cognitive elements -commonly arises after making a decision or after behaving in ways that are incongruous with attitudes
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dissonance effect
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increasing rewards for counter-attitudinal behavior actually produce less attitude change (attitude changes in order to reduce dissonance between behaviors and attitudes, the greater the discrepancy between the two, the greater the attitude change is likely to be)
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forced compliance
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don’t really have a choice
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conditions important for understanding the relation between attitudes and behavior
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1) when external influences on our actions are minimal 2) when the attitude is specific to the behavior 3) when we are conscious of our attitudes
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characteristics of attitudes influence behavior
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1) behavior is more predictable when there is a consistency between beliefs about objects and the emotion attached to them 2) previous experience is related to behavior 3) those with stronger attitudes regarding an object are more likely to have predictable behavior 4) in order to predict behavior, attitudes must be stable over time
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correspondence
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prediction of behavior depends on the correspondence of four elements: action, target, context, and time (the more elements a person has a consistent attitude about, the more accurately one can predict their behavior)
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situational constraint
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an influence on behavior that results from the response or presumed response of others -Melissa’s behavior might not match her attitudes if she is among people who are not receptive to homelessness
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subjective norm
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one’s perception of what others think is appropriate behavior
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perceived behavioral control
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focused on the possession of the appropriate resources needed for specific behavior
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social influence
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when one person’s behavior causes another person to change her or his opinion or behavior
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elaboration likelihood model
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two routes through which a message can change a person’s attitude: central route and peripheral route
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central route
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when a target analyzes and evaluates the arguments in a message and then incorporates the arguments into a consistent stance on the issue (attitude change via this route only occurs when the arguments are consistent and stronger than the target’s previously held notions)
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peripheral route
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when the target pays attention to information unrelated to the argument, such as characteristics of the source, message, or situation (attitude change via this route depends on the target’s evaluation of these unrelated characteristics)
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communication-persuasion paradigm
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method of understanding persuasion -focuses on attributes of the source, message, target, and effect
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features of the source that may influence persuasion
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1) level of expertise 2) level of trust between target and source 3) physical attractiveness of the source
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features of the message that may lead to persuasion
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1) the discrepancy of the message 2) the presence of an appeal based on particular emotions, such as fear 3) whether the message is one-sided or two-sided
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characteristics of the target that are important for persuasion
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1) how educated the target is about the issue 2) the level of involvement of the target with the issue 3) how much attention the target gives to the source
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attitude inoculation
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process of exposing targets to weak arguments against their attitudes in order to strengthen the original attitude when a stronger attack is present (named because it works just like medical inoculation, which exposes a person’s body to a weak version of a virus. the weakened virus triggers the production of antibodies in response, but it is not strong enough to overhwhelm the body’s resistance. later when exposed to the full virus, the body knows what to expect and is better able to resist it)