GenPsych - Ch13 Social1

GenPsych - Ch13 Social1 - Social Psychology Social...

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Social Psychology Social Cognition – today’s lecture. Perceiving, remembering and reasoning about the social world. Impression formation. Attitudes. Stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination. Attributions. Social Behavior – next lecture. Behavior in relationships and groups. Social Cognition Social cognition involves mental representations of the social world and the processes that use them to perceive, remember, make inferences and draw conclusions about others. Many of the concepts and principles we studied under perception, memory, and cognition apply: Schemas as organizing principles. Implicit vs. explicit memory. Automatic vs. controlled processing. Activation (accessibility) of information. The Inherent Ambiguity of Social Cognition Starting at a very young age (approx. 9 months), we view other persons as having minds that contain: Beliefs. Thoughts. Desires, Intentions, and goals. However, we can only observe others’ behaviors in specific situations, and we must infer from these observations the beliefs, thoughts, and intentions of others. Thus, there is a potential for the strong influence of schemas, or existing beliefs, on social cognition. Many of these are absorbed from one’s society and culture.
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Impression Formation We rapidly evaluate others from their appearance and behavior. Impressions often are formed in 10 seconds. The primacy effect. Early information carries more weight. Self-fulfilling prophecies. Expectations induce others to behave in a manner consistent with those expectations. Stereotypes: Social Schemas Schemas allow us to enter new social situations with some idea as to how we and others are to act. Since schemas generate expectancies, they can produce a self-fulfilling prophecy effect. A stereotype is a social schema: Characteristics are assigned to persons based on their membership in a specific group. Prejudice is an unfavorable attitude toward a group of people, usually associated with
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GenPsych - Ch13 Social1 - Social Psychology Social...

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