Social Psychology Chapter 7: Attitudes and Attitude Change

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Cognitively Based Attitude

Attitude based primarily on people's beliefs about the properties of an attitude object

Affectiively Based Attitude

Attitude based more on people's feelings and values than on their beliefs about the nature of an attitude object

Attitude

Evaluations of people, objects and ideas

Classical Conditioning

When stimulus elicits an emotional response in repeatedly paired with a neutral stimulus that does not, until the neutral stimulus takes on the emotional properties of the first stimulus

Operant Conditioning

Behaviors that people freely choose to perform increase/decrease in frequency, depending on whether they are followed by reinforcement or punishment.

Behaviorally-Based Attitude

Attitude based on observations of how one behaves towards an attitude object

Explicit Attitudes

Attitudes that we consciously endorse and can easily report.

Implicit Attitudes

Involuntary, uncontrollable and sometimes unconscious atttitude.

Persuasive Communication

Communication advocating a particular side of an issue.

Yale Attitude Change Approach

Study of conditions under which people are most likely to change their attitudes in response to persuasive messages, focusing on "who said what to who" - the source of the communication, the nature of the communication, and the nature of the audience.

Elaboration Likelihood Model

Model explaining 2 ways in which persuasive communication can cause attitude change: centrally, when pople are motivated and pay attention to the arguments, and peripherally, when people don't pay attention to the arguments but instead swayed by surface characteristics.

Central Route to Persuasion

Case whereby people elaborate on a persuasive communication, listening carefully to and thinking of the arguments

Peripheral Route to Persuasion

People do not elaborate on the arguments in a persuasive communicationn but instead swayed by peripheral cues.

Need for Cognition

A personality variable reflecting the extent to which people engage in and enjoy effortful cognitive activities.

Fear-Arousing Communications

Persuasive messages that attempt to change people's attitudes by arousing their fears

Heuristic-Systematic Model of Persuasion

Explanation of the 2 ways in which persuasive communications can cause attitude change by either systematically processing the merits of the arguments or using mental shortcuts (heuristics)

Attitude Inoculation

Making people immune to attempts to change their attitudes by initially exposing them to small doses of the arguments against their position.

Reactance Theory

Idea that when people feel their freedom to perform a certain behavior is threatened, an unpleasant state of reactance is aroused, which can be reduced by performing the threatened behavior.

Attitude Accessibility

The strength of the association between an attitude object and a person's evaluation of that object, measured by the speed with which people can report how they feel about the object.

Theory of Planned Behavior

Idea that the best predictor's of a person's planned, deliberate behaviors are the person's attitudes toward specific behaviors, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control.

Subliminal Messages

Words or pictures not consciously perceived but nevertheless influence people's judgements, attitudes and behaviors.

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