1 Introduction - Introduction to Social Psychology and...

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Introduction to Social Psychology and Research Methods May 31, 2011 Professor Jamie Gorman Doctoral Candidate Rutgers University at Newark Smith Hall Room 113 Gormanj@psychology.rutgers.edu
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Who are you? Where are you from? What is your major? Why did you decide to take this course? What is your dream job? What is a psychologist?
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Goals of Psychology Science Explain behavior Predict behavior Control behavior
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Who are we? What makes us unique? Individual Personality traits (OCEAN) Physical and intellectual abilities Group Gender Culture Peer group Species What makes us unique from other animals
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How do we explain/predict/control behavior? Social psychologists ask: Who is the actor? What is the situation? Behavior is a function of the person and the situation - Kurt Lewin
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Mission of Social Psychologists How are one’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors influenced by the imagined or actual presence of others? How does the situation influence our behavior? How does the behavior of others influence an individual’s behavior?
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Social Psychology The exploration of the interaction of an individual person and a given situation Three main areas of interest: social perception social influence social interaction
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Social Psychology Social perception forming an impression of others based on available information Social influence the process by which one’s thoughts and actions are affected by others Social interaction the relationship between two or more individuals
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Why People Study Social Psychology Curiosity About People Experimental Philosophy Making the World Better Applied Research – focuses on solving particular practical problems
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A Brief History of Social Psychology Earliest Social Psychology Experiments How does the presence of others influence individual performance? Norman Triplett, 1897-1898 Social facillitation - Cyclists who competed against each other performed better than those who competed against the clock Max Ringelmann, 1880s Social loafing - During a game of tug-of-war, as group size increased, individual effort decreased.
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Social Loafing vs. Social Facilitation
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How do we learn about ourselves through our interactions with others? Do we act more on the basis of inner moral principles or on the basis of what everyone else is doing? Does modern life make people vulnerable to alienation and exploitation by large social systems? Social Psychology in the Twentieth Century
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A Brief History of Social Psychology Influences in Early 20th Century Gordon Allport ** attitudes are the most useful and important concept in social psychology World War II How did so many traditionally religious and moral people commit such atrocities? Why do soldiers continue their duty despite risk of
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This note was uploaded on 01/11/2012 for the course PSYCH 21:830:335 taught by Professor Jamiegordon during the Summer '11 term at Rutgers.

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1 Introduction - Introduction to Social Psychology and...

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