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PSYC260Lecture05

PSYC260Lecture05 - PSYC 260 Sept 11th 2008 How Do We Form...

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PSYC 260 Sept 11 th , 2008 How Do We Form Beliefs About Ourselves and the Social World? Maintain Self - Esteem (e.g., Dissonance Theory, Lecture 2) Use Strategies to Increase Accuracy (Social Cognition) Topic 3: Social Cognition 1. Social Cognition a. The power of the human brain Amazing capabilities to perceive and understand the social world b. Sophisticated strategies i. But: These strategies can lead to errors ii. NOT because of self-esteem maintenance iii. Social cognition is not perfect c. Two modes of social cognition: i. Automatic Thinking : Nonconscious, Unintentional, Involuntary, Effortless ii. Controlled Thinking: Conscious, Intentional, Voluntary, Effortful 2. Automatic Thinking: using schemas a. The Good News: We possess a powerful unconscious mind that helps us make decisions automatically b. The Bad News: Can unknowingly produce bad decisions c. Revolution in Research Psychology i. There is a vast, functional, set of unconscious processes that are vital to human functioning ii. Sizes up our environments, disambiguates them, interprets them, and initiates behavior quickly iii. Estimate of Norretranders (1998) 1. Our five senses take in 10,000,000 bits of information per second 2. We process 7-40 pieces of information consciously per second 3. What happens to the other 9,999,960? iv. What Automatic Processing Does: 1. Lower-Order Mental Processing (e.g., perception, memory) 2.
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