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The evolutionary process by which heritable traits that best enable organisms to survive and reproduce in particular environments are passed to ensuing generations.
The study of the evolution of cognition and behavior using principles of natural selection.
The enduring behaviors, ideas, attitudes, and traditions shared by a large group of people and transmitted from one generation to the next.
Standards for accepted and expected behavior. Norms prescribe "proper" behavior. (In a different sense of the word, norms also describe what most others do - what is normal).
The buffer zone we like to maintain around our bodies. Its size depends on our familiarity with whoever is near us.
In psychology, the characteristics, whether biological or socially influenced, by which people define male and female.
Physical or verbal behavior intended to hurt someone. In laboratory experiments, this might mean delivering electric shocks or saying something likely to hurt another's feelings.
From andro (man) + gyn (woman) - thus mixing both masculine and feminine characteristics.
A relationship in which the effect of one factor (such as biology) depends on another factor (such as environment).
Conformity that involved publicly acting in accord with an implied or explicit request while privately disagreeing.
Self (auto) motion (kinetic). The apparent movement of a stationary point of light in the dark.
A "we feeling"; the extent to which members of a group are bound together, such as by attraction for one another.
Conformity based on a person's desire to fulfill others' expectations, often to gain acceptance.
Conformity occurring when people accept evidence about reality provided by other people.
A motive to protect or restore one's sense of freedom. Reactance arises when someone threatens our freedom of action.
Central Route to Persuasion
Occurs when interested people focus on the arguments and respond with favorable thoughts.
Peripheral Route to Persuasion
Occurs when people are influenced by incidental cues, such as a speaker's attractiveness.
A delayed impact of a message that occurs when an initially discounted message becomes effective, as we remember the message but forget the reason for discounting it.
Having qualities that appeal to an audience. An appealing communicator (often someone similar to the audience) is most persuasive on matters of subjective preference.
Other things being equal, information presented first usually has the most influence.
Information presented last sometimes has the most influence. Recency effects are less common than primacy effects.
Channel of Communication
The way the message is delivered - whether face to face, in writing, on film, or in some other way.
Two-Step Flow of Communication
The process by which media influence often occurs through opinion leaders, who in turn influence others.
Need for Cognition
The motivation to think and analyze. Assessed by agreement with items such as "The notion of thinking abstractly is appealing to me" and disagreement with items such as "I only think as hard as I have to".
Cult (also called new religious movement)
A group typically characterized by (1) distinctive ritual and beliefs related to it devotion to a god or a person, (2) isolation from the surrounding "evil" culture, and (3) a charismatic leader. (A sect, by contrast, is a spinoff from a major religion).
Exposing people to weak attacks upon their attitudes so that when stronger attacks come, they will have refutations available.
Two or more people who, for longer than a few moments, interact with and influence one another and perceive one another as "us".
(1) Original meaning: the tendency of people to perform simple or well-learned tasks better when others are present. (2) Current meaning: the strengthening of dominant (prevalent, likely) responses in the presence of others.
The tendency for people to exert less effort when they pool their efforts toward a common goal than when they are individually accountable.
Loss of self-awareness and evaluation apprehension; occurs in group situations that foster responsiveness to group norms, good or bad.
Group-produced enhancement of members' preexisting tendencies; a strengthening of members' average tendency, not a split within the group.
A false impression of what most other people are thinking or feeling, or how they are responding.
The mode of thinking that persons engage in when concurrence-seeking becomes so dominant in a cohesive in-group that it tends to override realistic appraisal of alternative courses of action.
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