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an explanation for the cause of behavior or events

Dispositional Attribution

behavior comes from personality

Situational Attribution

behavior comes from environment

Fundamental Attribution Error

Misjuding that causes of other's behavior as due to internal causes rather than external

Saliency Bias

Focusing on the most noticeable factors when explaining causes of behavior

Self Serving Bias

taking credit for our successes and externalizing our failures

Different Cultures

eastern cultures tend to be more collectivist and encourage people to blend in with the group, they blame external factors until western cultures


learned predisposition to respond cognitively, affectively, and behaviorally to a particular object

Components of Attitudes

Cognitive, Affective, Behavioral

Cognitive Dissonance

feelings of discomfort caused by a discrepancy between an attitude and behavior


learned, generally negative, attitude toward a specific people because of their membership in a group


cognitive aspect of prejudice, set of beliefs about the characteristics of people in a group that apply to all members


behavioral component of prejudice, action

Causes of prejudice

learning, mental shortcuts, economic and political competition, and displaced aggression

prejudice as learned response

children growing up see prejudice by parents or on TV/books, learn it is acceptable, they might also be praised for prejucial remarks

Prejudice as a mental shortcut

it is easier to make quick judgements and allows people to create in and outgroup

Ingroup favoritism

viewing members of an ingroup more positively than members of an outgroup

Outgroup homogeneity effect

judging members of an outgroup as more alike than members of an ingroup

Prejudice from competition

when the dominant group eels threatened they maintain prejudice to protect their interests

Prejudice as displaced aggression

when frustration comes from something unbeatable, people scapegoat

interpersonal attraction

positive feelings toward another

three factors in attraction

physical attractiveness, proximity, and similarity

Physical Attractiveness

looks are the most important initial factor

matching hypothesis

men and women of approximately equal physical attractiveness tend to select each other as partners


attraction base on geographic closeness

mere exposure

repeated exposure increases overall liking

need complementarity

attraction toward those with qualities we admire but personally lack

need compatibility

attraction based on sharing similar needs

liking vs. loving

loving couples look into each other's eyes more, love is more intense and made of: caring, attachment, intimacy

romantic love

intense feeling of attraction to another within an erotic context and with future expectations
- based on mystery which doesn't work in long run

companionate love

strong and lasting attraction characterized by trust, caring, tolerance, and friendship
- overlook faults


experiement with people in groups deciding which line is more similar


changing behavior because of real or imagined group pressure

normative social influence

conforming to group pressure out of a need for approval and acceptance


cultural rule for behavior describing what is acceptable in a given situation

Informational Social Influence

conforming because of a need for information and direction

reference groups

people we conform to because we like and admire them and want to be like them


following direct commands, usually from an authority figure


shock experiement, 65% of people obeyed

Factors in obedience

legitimacy and closeness of authority
remoteness of victim

relaxed moral guard

when people look good and trustworthy, we are more obedient

foot in the door

small request is used to get more later on


prison study that had to be ended after 6 days b/c people took roles seriously,


reduced self consciousness, inhibition, and personal responsibility that occurs in a group when members feel anonymous

group polarization

groups move toward riskier or more conservative behavior depending on members initial dominant tendency


faulty decision making that occurs when a highly cohesive group strives for agreement and avoids inconsistent information


behavior intended to harm another living being

Biological Factors in Aggression

Instincts - evolved b/c of survival of fittest
brain and nervous system
substance abuse

Psychosocial Factors in Aggression

Aversive stimuli - noise etc. things that cause frustration
culture - different cultures value peace etc.
violent media - teach children that violence is acceptable

Frustration-aggression hypothesis

blocking of a goal creates anger that leads to aggression

incompatible responses

doing something that isn't compatible with aggression may reduce it (joke etc.


actions that help others with no benefit to the helper

egoistic model

helping is motivated by gain later on (less guilt, rewards)

empathy altruism hypothesis

helping because of empathy for someone in need

what has to happen for help?

notice, interpret, personal responsibility, decide how to help

diffusion of responsibility

group members spread out responsibilty so people don't help

Ways to combat prejudice

cooperation and superordinate goals
increased contact (close interaction, interdependence, equal status)
cognitive retraining - pay attention to similarities
cognitive issonance


we are taught by society to follow teachers etc.

power of situation

follow people who are in change

door in the face

ask for a lot in order to get just a little

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