Unformatted text preview: Group Processes What is a group? Two or more people who interact and are interdependent. Real groups are distinguished from aggregations by:
1. 2. 3. interdependence group identity group structure Why do people join groups?
1. Information Need for accuracy Informational social influence Social Identity Theory Need to feel good Normative social influence Divide the labor 2. Identity 3. To get things done Features of groups Similarity: people are attracted to similar others Group cohesiveness: the more cohesive, the more likely group members will stay Social norms: violating norms results in pressure to conform Social roles: roles are helpful but they have costs What if roles are arbitrary? Stanford Prison Study, 1971 Stanford Prison Study video Zimbardo interview video "The power of the situation." "The guards began to use the prisoners as playthings for their amusement. They would get them to simulate sodomy. They also stripped prisoners naked for various offenses and put them in solitary for excessive periods." Group Influence
Social Facilitation Social Loafing Deindividuation Social Facilitation
Social Facilitation Norm Triplett (1897) Bike racers faster in competition than alone 1st social psych experiment: children wind fishing reels as quickly as possible But... People sometimes do worse when someone is observing them social inhibition Social Facilitation
Zajonc, 1969 Cockroaches run maze in a cockroach stadium IVs: DV: time to complete maze Results: 1. 2. maze difficulty (simple vs. difficult); merepresence of others (alone vs. "cockroach fans") Simple maze: presence of others faster Difficult maze: presence of others slower Presence of Others Physiological Arousal Dominant Response Dominant Response (simple/welllearned task) (complex task) On simple or well learned tasks, dominant response is correct On difficult or complex tasks, dominant response is wrong Improved Performance Impaired Performance Social Facilitation
Why does the presence of others lead to arousal? 3 theories
1. Alertness 1. Evaluation apprehension DistractionConflict 1. Social Loafing When individual performance cannot be evaluated: Ringelmann, 1913 Latane, 1979 Why? Simple tasks impaired performance Complex tasks enhanced performance Identifiability! Social Loafing Social Facilitation vs. Social Loafing
Social Facilitation vs. Social Loafing Can individual efforts be evaluated? Yes: arousal social facilitation effects better at simple tasks, worse on complex tasks No: relaxation social loafing worse on simple tasks, better on complex tasks Deindividuation Mob mentality. Becoming anonymous loosens normal restraints on behavior. Lynchings (Mullen, 1986) Warriors (Watson, 1973) Uniforms (Rehm et al., 1987) Hurting Others (Zimbardo, 1970) Deindividuation Deindividuation Why?
1. No accountability Group norms 1. Group Decisions Are Two Heads Better Than One? Process Loss Process loss Why? No one listens to the expert Communication problems Failure to share unique information
Stasser & Titus, 1985 Kelly & Karau, 1999 Group Decisions How to avoid process loss:
1. 2. Assign each person different responsibilities Take time to discuss unshared ideas Transactive memory
1. 2. Knowledge held by individual group members Communication network Group Polarization Tendency for groups to make extreme decisions Why?
1. Persuasive arguments Social comparison 1. Group Polarization
Imagine you were considering the pros and cons of going to grad school, and you talked it over with two groups: Your family: Who was initially slightly opposed to the idea Your fellow students: Who were initially slightly favorable What would happen after discussion within each group? Attitude Towards Grad School Definitely GO After discussion, the group that initially favored grad school would be even more strongly in favor Unsure Conversely, the group that initially disfavored grad school would be even more opposed Definitely NO (Get A Job!) Before Group Discussion After Group Discussion Groupthink When group cohesiveness is more important than considering the facts. Antecedents of groupthink: 1. Highly cohesive group 2. Group isolation 3. Directive leader Symptoms of groupthink: 1. Illusion of invulnerability 2. Belief in moral correctness of group 3. Stereotyped views of outgroup 4. Selfcensorship 5. Pressure to conform (mindguards) 6. Illusion of unanimity Challenger Explosion Groupthink Challenger video Groupthink How to avoid grouphink:
1. 1. 1. 1. Impartial leaders Get outside information Divide into subgroups Secret Ballots Group Decisions Is diversity valuable? Heterogeneous groups do better on: Tasks in which only one person is needed to get the right answer. Tasks requiring creative or innovative solutions, for which different perspectives are important. Juries
Group Processes in Action Juries Problems can arise at each phase of trial:
1. Before trial During trial After evidence has been presented 1. 1. Pretrial Pretrial Publicity Emotional publicity is most biasing Linking names & events damaging, even when in opposite direction
E.g., "Bob Talbert Not Linked with Mafia" Solutions?
1. 2. Voir dire "Please disregard what you have seen." The Trial Information processing
Jurors decide on best story Story order vs. witness order Defense Evidence Prosecution Evidence Story Order Witness Order Story Order 59 78 Witness Order 31 63 Deliberations In 97% of cases, the jury's final decision (guilty vs. not guilty) will the one initially favored by the majority. But... minority views have an effect Jury Size Jury size: 6 vs. 12? Problem with 6: will minority view be represented? A minority of 1 on a 6person jury is much more likely to conform than 2 people on a 12person jury. Social psychologists answer: 12 jurors Leadership Leadership Personality? Personality traits are surprisingly unrelated to leadership Person in the situation Fiedler's contingency theory
Taskoriented: most effective in situations that are either very high or very low in control. most effective in situations that are moderate in control. Relationshiporiented ...
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This note was uploaded on 03/20/2008 for the course PSYC 260 taught by Professor Traceycallison during the Spring '08 term at UNC.
- Spring '08
- Social Psychology