3-28-SocialCognition2 - Social Cognition II Social...

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1 Social Cognition II Social Cognition II Attribution • Attitudes Attribution Attribution refers to the process of inferring the causes of mental states and behaviors of yourself and of others • Try to determine the extent to which situations, persons, and behaviors vary with each other External attributions : Behavior is due to the situation : – “The boss yelled at me because this is April 15th and his taxes are not done…” Internal attributions : Behavior reflects the person : – “The boss yells at everyone… even his mom…”
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Issues in Attribution Whether attributions are made to the person or the situation depends on: 1. Consensus: The extent to which a behavior is operative in a group Consensus responses induce bias toward viewing the behavior as situational 2. Consistency: Refers to the extent to which a person responds reliably to a stimulus. Consistent responses elicit internal attributions 3. Distinctiveness: Extent to which person responds to different stimuli Distinctive responses elicit internal attributions Biases in Attribution Fundamental Attribution Error: observers’ bias in favor of internal attributions in explaining others’ behavior – i.e., we would be more likely to say: “The boss yells at everyone… even his mom…” – Observer may not be aware of all situational factors Actor-Observer Difference: when we are the observer, we tend to emphasize dispositional factors (fundamental attribution error) but when we are the actor, we emphasize external causes Biases in Attribution Defensive attribution: tendency to blame victims for their misfortune so that one feels less likely to be victimized in a similar way. • Blaming the victim helps people maintain the belief
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This note was uploaded on 05/23/2011 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 1101 taught by Professor Parks,nate during the Spring '08 term at Georgia Institute of Technology.

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3-28-SocialCognition2 - Social Cognition II Social...

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