Psychology_ Sociocultural LOA.txt

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Psychology_ Sociocultural LOA.txt
2012-04-28 21:10:12
Sociocultural LOA Psych IB

IB Psychology Sociocultural Level of Analysis
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  1. Outline the principles that define the Sociocultural LOA
    Principle 1: Human beings are social animals and we have the basic need to 'belong'

    Principle 2: Culture influences behavior

    Principle 3: Because humans are social animals, they have a 'social self'

    Principle 4: People's views of the world are resistant to change.
  2. Explain how principles may be demonstrated in research throught theories.
  3. Discuss how and why particular research methods are used at the sociocultural LOA
    *In order to see how people interact with each other, modern day psychologists use qualitative research in order to keep the participants behavior as realistic as possible, often times using naturalistic reseach. (Weakness: data is descpriptive and now statistical and there is no manipulated variable.) (Strengths: helps avoid lack of ecological validity.)*

    Interviews: the interviwer must remember gender and nonverbal cues in order to determine the types of questions to be asked and develop ramport while also being able to utilize active listening techniques.

    Focus Groups: this creates an enviroment that could possibly be more stimulating to the interviwer and help them bring up points or ideas that would not normally be brought up in a one on one interview. The researchers use open -ended questions to encourage disscussion.

    Participant Obervations: this is where the researchers immerse themselves in a social setting for an extended period of time and observe behavior. [Overt]: meaning that the confederate is known within the group and requires a great deal of trust. [Covert]: participants do not know about the confederate and is often used with hostile or un-trusting participants, limited by the ethical concerns, and the memory can be distorted.
  4. DIscuss ethical considerations related to research studies at the sociocultural LOA
    Informed Consent: throught overt/covert observations where intent is not disclosed along with decit to gain trust and not always obtained consent

    Anonymity and Confedentiality

    Participants Protected from Potential Harm

    Researchers Protected from Potential Harm
  5. Describe the role of situational and dispositional factors in explaining behavior
    Attribution Theory: (Fritz Heider 1958) - humans have a tendency to give casual explainations for someones behavior often by creating either the situation or the persons' disposition (making inferences about intention and responsibility)

    • Actor-Observer Effect: people make an attribution about behavior depending on whether they are performing it themselves or observing someone else doing it.
    • -Situational Factors: attributed to external factors
    • -Dispositional Factors: attributed to personal traits or tendencies
  6. Discuss two errors in attribution
    • 1. Fundamental Attribution Error: when people overestimate the role of dispositional factors in an individuals behavior and underestimate the situational factors. We like to think of ourselves as adaptable and not a singular 'type' of person and when we observe others we don't know a lot about them so we attribute their actions to their disposition.
    • *How we explain someones behavior affects how we react to it.*

    • 2. Self Serving Bias: when we take credit for our own successes and disassosiate ourselves from our failures attributing them to the situation.
    • -Lau and Russel: (1980)- the football study where when the team wins, it is because of internal factors (i.e. wellness, talent, practice, etc...) when the team looses, it is because of external factors (i.e. injuries, weather, referees, etc...)
    • -Greenberg et al: (1982)- we use the self serving bias to protect our self esteem thus we attribute our wins to ourselves and our failures to the situatino.
    • -Miller and Ross: (1975)- cognatve facotrs may play a role in self-serving bias. When we expect to triumph and we win, it is because of skill and ability. When we expect to fail and we triumph, it is because of luck and external factors. When we expect to triumph and fail, it is because of bad luck and external factors (think of the Aliso Game).
    • *one exception to the self serving bias is people who are severely depressed tend to make more dispositional attributions thus blaming themselves for their negative feelings.*
    • -Kashia and Triandis: (1986): the difference between Japanese students and American students. When asked to remember details from slides of scenes from unfamiliar countries and then questioned on performance, the American students said that it was their abitiy (i.e. good memory) whereas the Japanese tend to explain things in terms of lack of ability illustrating the modesty bias.
  7. Evaluate the social identity theory.
    *individuals try to improve their self-image by trying to enhance their self-esteem based on either their personal identity or various social identities; based on the cognative process of social catagorization, and used to explain social phenomena (i.e. ethnocentrism, in-group favoritism, stereotyping, conformity, etc...) and can produce competitive intragroup behavior*

    -Cialdini et al:
    (1976) - studied the social comparison among college football fans. After a win, more fans would be found visually and verbally supporting the team as compared to after a loss. This explains our need for positive self-concept (bias in intergroup comparisons) {Tajfel (1978) refers to this as the establishment of positive distinctiveness}

    -People exhibit the in-group favoritism and a pattern of discrimination against the out group. The indivuduals self esteem is manipulated by social comparison {the benefits of being in the in-group as opposed to the out-group.}

    -Kandisky v. Klee experiment, Tajfel et. al: (1971) - boys were randomly assigned to a group based on their supposed preference for the art of either Klee or Kandisky. The boys were more likely to identify with the others in their group and rate them higher than those in the other group. Group members see themselves as similar in attitude and behavior and a bond is formed even if they did not know one another prior to the study.

    -Limitations: 1. the theory does not actually identify human behavior. 2. the theory is reductionist (failing to address the enviroment that interacts with the self. Culture may play a role in behavior more than ones sense of in group identity.)
  8. Explain the formation of stereotypes and their effect on behavior
    • -Campbell: (1967) - two key sources to the developement of stereotypes. 1. Personal Experience with individuals and/or groups. 2. Gatekeepers, those who give us our information (i.e. media, parents, and other members of our culture).
    • -Grain of Truth Hypothesis: stereotypes have basis in some reality and that an experience with a group or an individual will become generalized to the whole.
    • -Limitations: errors in attribution (SSB and FAE) may occur

    -Hamilton and Gifford: (1976) - Illusory Correlation {people will see a correlation between two variables even when there is none.} people will form false assosiations between membership of a social group and specific behaviors. Culturally based prejudice about social groups can to some extent be classified as illusory correlation. Conformation Bias {people tend to overlook information that contradicts what they already believe} people pay attention to actions that confirm the belief and ignore those that contradict. *makes stereotypical thinking resistant to change.*

    • Stereotype Threat: the effect a stereotype has on an individuals performance usually occurring when a person is put into a situation where there is a threat of being judged or treated stereotypically or fear of 'confirming' a stereotype.
    • -Spotlight Anxiety: generated from the stereotype threat causing emotional stress and pressure that may undermine peformance. [Steele 1997]

    -Steele and Aaronson :
    (1995) - participants were split into two groups and given a verbal test with varring multiple choice questions. Group one was told that it was an actual test on verbal abilities while group two was told that the test was for a laboratory task used to study how certain problems are generally solved. The African American participants in group one scored significantly lower than their European counterparts, however in group two, the scores were raised to match that of their European counterparts.

    -Spencer et al: (1977) - women v. men in math with equal mathematical abilities. Women under the stereotype threat would underperform compared to the men taking the difficult mathematics test. Because of the negative stereotype, women performed signifigantly lower than the men even though their mathematic skills were equal. However when tested in literature skills, the men and women performed equally.
  9. Explain the social learning theory making reference to two relevant studies.
    *Social Learning Theory assumes that humans learn behavior through observational learning by watching models and imitating their behavior. The models can either have indirect or direct influence on the learner.*

    • -Factors of the Social Learning Theory:
    • 1. attention (observer must pay attention to the model.)
    • 2. retention (observer must remember observed action.)
    • 3. motor reproduction (must be able to physically replicate the action.)
    • 4. motivation (observer must be motivated to replicate action)
    • a) consistency: model must be consitent across situations
    • b) indentification towards the model: connection to them
    • c) rewards/punishments
    • d) liking the model

    -Bandura: (1961) the Bobo doll experiment in which a confederate adult was used to measure hw much a child imitated the adult when the adult was being mean or haming the bobo doll. So what happened was that the child imitated the adult in the Bobo doll experiment in that they also hit, threw, yelled, and/or kicked the Bobo doll much like the confederate adult did. The more aggressive the adult, the more aggressive the child became.

    -Huesmann and Eron: (1986) - longitudinal study that monitors childrens behavior over a fifteen year period and found that the number of violent shows watched positively correlated with aggressive behaviors in teenage years. Eight year olds who watched a lot of violent television shows, had a higher chance to be arrested and prosecuted for criminal acts as an adult.

    • -Kimball and Zabrack: (1986) - the Canadian violent children study to determine if there is a correlation betweem violence on television and aggressive behavior that found that the kids became more aggressive two years after introduction of television into the town
    • -Limitations: there could have been past experiences of violence and/or abuse.

    *Television is not always a negative influence. Sesame Street was aired in order to develop and teach academic and social skills. The Sabido Method was employed, based on Bandura's Socail Learning Theory, to change behavior (i.e. safe sex, family planning, and gender equality)*

    Strenths: -helps explain why behaviors may be passed down through generations -explains why children pick up on human traits without trial and error learning.

    Weaknesses: -although the actions can be aquired, they may not always be demonstrated (a gap exists between observation and behavior). -some never learn how to do a behavior despite the model.
  10. Discuss the use of compliance techiniques.