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psy Social_Psychology - Social Psychology I Attitudes and...

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Social Psychology I. Attitudes and Attitude Change a. Attitude: positive or negative evaluation or belief about something which may affect one’s behavior i. Usually oriented towards people, groups or events ii. Attitudes form a predisposition for behavior 1. We behave certain ways based on our attitudes b. Attitude structure i. Three components ii. Affective component 1. Emotional feelings connected to an attitude iii. Cognitive component 1. Beliefs or knowledge about an attitude iv. Behavioral component 1. Actions and behaviors associated with an attitude 2. Many believe that this is the core component v. The three components mostly work together 1. One may be suppressed a. Prejudice i. Basing an attitude mostly on one part ii. Acting before feeling or thinking c. Self-perception theory (Bem’s theory) i. Internal beliefs come from our behavior ii. We are active observers of our own behavior 1. We are keenly aware of what we do 2. We learn from our behavior 3. We use our behavior to form our attitudes
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4. Backwards of intuitive thought a. Intuitive = I think then behave b. Bem = the way I behave infers my thought i. I play basketball everyday so I’m good at it ii. If I sign a petition for safe driving, I must be an advocate for safe driving d. Festinger and Carlsmith (1959) i. Make subjects participate in boring tasks ii. Subjects were then asked to convince the next subject that it was interesting and fun iii. Some subjects were offered $1 or $20 to do the task iv. Theory: Paid subjects had a greater attitude toward the task than the underpaid subjects v. $1 subjects had a better attitude towards the task e. Cognitive dissonance theory i. We want to be consistent ii. If inconsistent, cognitive dissonance occurs 1. Cognitive dissonance = a highly uncomfortable emotional state 2.
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