Chapter 2 Social Cognition - Vocab, studies

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Chapter 2 Social Cognition - Vocab, studies
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essential social psyc vocab
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essential social psyc vocabulary and studies
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  1. Social cognition
    the way in which perceivers encode, process, remember and use information in social contexts in order to make sense of other people's behavior
  2. Social context
    a real or imagined scenario including reference to self or others
  3. Social inference
    the way in which we categorize others and use cognitive shortcuts to clarify and understand all of the information bombarding our senses
  4. Two primary needs people are motivated by, according to Heider
    • 1. the need to form a coherent view of the world
    • 2. the need to gain control over the environment
  5. Naive scientists
    people rationally and logically test out hypotheses about the behavior of others because of a desire for consistency and stability
  6. Cognitive misers
    theory that, far from being naive scientists, we are reluctant to expend cognitive resources and look for an opportunity to avoid engaging in effortful thought
  7. Heuristics
    time-saving mental short-cuts that reduce complex judgements to simple rules of thumb
  8. Representative heuristic
    • tendency to allocate a set of attributes to someone if they match the prototype of a given category
    • quick and easy way of putting people into categoires
  9. Social categorization
    the way in which we organize our social world by putting people into groupings - males and females, old and young, black and white
  10. Base rate fallacy
    • tendency to ignore statistical information in favor of representativeness information
    • fallacy of the representative heuristic
  11. Availability heuristic
    tendency to judge the frequency of an event in terms of how easy it is to bring to mind examples of that particular event; we use availability as a cognitive short-cut; the easier it is for something to come to mind, the more likely it is that it will affect our behavior
  12. Accessibility
    extent to which a concept is readily brought to mind
  13. False consensus effect
    • robust bias we have to overestimate how common one's own opinion is in the general population
    • tendency to exaggerate how common one's own opinions are in the general population
  14. Who said people are flexible social thinkers who choose between multiple cognitive strategies based on their current goals, motives and needs?
    Kruglanski, 1996
  15. Motivated tacticians
    • the idea that people are neither cognitive misers nor naive scientists; instead, they are strategic in their allocation of cognitive resources, deciding whether to be a cognitive miser or a naive scientist depending on the situation
    • People are flexible social thinkers who choose between multiple cognitive strategies based on their current goals, motives, and needs
  16. Who developed the outline determining whether people adopt systematic or heuristic processing?
    Macrae, Hewstone and Griffiths, 1993
  17. Time (motivated tactician)
    • In heuristic versus systematic processing
    • people are more likely to be a cognitive miser when they are short of time; in addition, the longer the time lag between assessing a person's attitude and behavior toward a stimulus, the less likely it is that attitude and behavior will correspond with one another
  18. Cognitive load (motivation tactician)
    • In heuristic versus systematic processing
    • to be a naive scientist, one must think, analyze and contemplate; people are therefore more likely to be a cognitive miser when they have lots on their mind and do not have the cognitive resources available to think in depth about an issue
  19. Importance (motivation tactician)
    • In heuristic versus systematic processing
    • if a decision we have to make is important to us, then we are much less likely to use a heuristic and much more likely to be a naive scientist
  20. Information (motivation tactician)
    • In heuristic versus systematic processing
    • we can only act as naive scientists if we have all the information we need at hand; where there is lack of information, we are more likely to rely on heuristics to make a decision; possessing more information about an attitude object leads to greater attitude strength and greater correspondence between attitude and behavior
  21. Categorization
    • - the process of understanding what something is by knowing what others things is is equivalent to, and what other things it is different from
    • - a way of classifying some collection of objects, events, opinions, attitudes, concepts or people
    • - labeling
    • - comparing
  22. Prototype
    the most representative or typical object, person, or characteristic in a particular category
  23. Stereotype
    prototype of a social category
  24. Illusory correlation
    belief that two variables are associated with one another when there is little or no actual association
  25. Shared distinctiveness
    term that describes when two things are both infrequent and therefore distinctive, which tends to lead to an illusory correlation
  26. Heterogeneous (in categories)
    a category that is perceived to be made up of many different sorts of people
  27. Homogeneous (in categories)
    a category that is perceived to be made up of only a few types of people who are all very similar to one another
  28. Outgroup homogeneity effect
    the general tendency that people have to perceive outgroup members to be more homogeneous than ingroup members
  29. Familiar
    the outgroup homogeneity effect may be explained by the fact that we are more familiar with our own group, holding a more detailed and varied impression of it
  30. Perceptual salience
    we tend to categorize on the basis of the features that are the most salient in a particular situation; the fundamental attribution error may be explained by the fact that the person being observed is the most perceptually salient aspect of the situation
  31. Chronic accessibility
    some categories, such as age, gender, and race, are used so frequently that they become chronically accessible, and are automatically applied to people in most situations
  32. Stereotype consistent
    categorization heightens accessibility of info that is consistent with the category stereotype
  33. Stereotype inconsistent
    • information that goes against our normal stereotypical expectation about a member of a particular group; may be better remembered than stereotype consistent info because it is attention getting, but only if people have enough cognitive resources available to process it
    • Salient and attention-grabbing
  34. Subtype
    even if stereotype inconsistent information is remembered, it may often be discounted as an 'exception to the rule' where the stereotype is concerned; subtyping often preserves and perpetuates the overall stereotype as it negates the impact of disconfirming information
  35. Behavioral assimilation
    phenomenon whereby when people think about a particular category they can unconsciously begin to act in line with the stereotype associated with that category (elderly = slow)
  36. Subliminal priming
    unconscious activation of knowledge structures, such as traits or stereotypes, which can then have an unintended influence on an individual's subsequent behavior
  37. Stereotype threat
    when a negative stereotype about the group to which we belong is made salient, we tend to show impaired performance on dimensions related to that stereotype
  38. Dual process theory
    theory that argues when forming impressions of others, people take either a heuristic or a systematic approach
  39. Continuum model
    • Fiske and Neuberg argue that there is a continuum from category-based (heuristic) processing where people are seen as individuals to attribute based (systematic) processing where people are seen as representative of a group
    • They say people begin the process of impression formation by adopting a cognitive miser mode of processing, unless they find there is not a good fit - then they shift to naive scientist mode
  40. Individuation
    seeing a person as an idiosyncratic individual with unique characteristics rather than as an interchangeable group member
  41. Decategorization
    process by which people switch from forming impressions based on categories to forming impressions based on individual characteristics
  42. What is social cognition?
    Describes the way people encode, process, remember, and use information in social contexts in order to make sense of other’s behavior
  43. What is systematic versus heuristic processing?
    • 1. Time
    • 2. Cognitive overload
    • 3. Importance
    • 4. Information
  44. Two ways we use systematic versus heuristic processing
    • Naïve scientist
    • Cognitive miser
  45. What is a cognitive miser?
    Processing resources are valuable so we engage in time-saving mental shortcuts when trying to understand the world
  46. Who developed the definition of a cognitive miser?
    Fiske and Taylor, 1991
  47. Who developed the concept of the naïve scientist?
    Heider
  48. Types of heuristics (4)
    • Representativeness
    • Availability
    • Anchoring
    • False consensus effect
  49. What are heuristics?
    • Time-saving mental shortcuts that reduce complex judgments to simple rules of thumb
    • Quick and easy, but can result in biased information processing
  50. What are the two most commonly used heuristics?
    • Representativeness
    • Availability
  51. Who made definitions for heuristics?
    • Tversky and Kahneman, 1974
    • Ajzen, 1996
  52. What is the representativeness heuristic?
    Tendency to judge the category membership of people based on how closely they match the prototypical member of that category
  53. Who developed the representativeness heuristic?
    Kahneman and Tversky, 1973
  54. What is the easy way to explain the representativeness heuristic?
    Quick and easy way of putting people into categories
  55. What is the base rate fallacy?
    • The representativeness heuristic is prone to error
    • It has a tendency to ignore statistical information in favor of representativeness information
  56. What is the availability heuristic?
    Tendency to judge the frequency or probability of an event in terms of how easy it is to think of examples of that event
  57. Who developed the availability heuristic?
    Tversky and Kaneman, 1973
  58. What concept is the availability heuristic related to?
    Concept of accessibility
  59. What study did Schwarz and colleagues do in 1991?
    • Methods
    • Had participants recall 12 or 6 examples of assertive/unassertive behavior, then rate themselves as assertive or unassertive
    • Results
    • Participants recalled 6 examples of their assertive (or unassertive) behavior subsequently rated themselves as more assertive (or unassertive) than those who had recalled 12 examples
    • People attend to the difficulty of retrieving instances of certain behaviors and not just the content – when recalling 12, examples became less available to them so they didn’t believe they were assertive/unassertive
  60. ****Who developed the false consensus effect?
    Gross and Miller, 1997
  61. Ross, Greene and House performed what study in 1977?
    • The false consensus effect
    • Methods
    • “Would you walk around campus for thirty minutes wearing a large sandwich board saying EAT AT JOE’S”
    • Students estimated that the number of students who would make the same choice as them
    • Results
    • Whatever choice the participant made, they estimated that the majority of other people would make the same choice
  62. What is the anchoring heuristic?
    Anchoring is the tendency to be biased toward the starting value or anchor in making quantitative judgments
  63. Who defined anchoring?
    Wyer, 1976
  64. What did Plous do in 1989?
    • The anchoring heuristic
    • Methods:
    • Survey during the Cold War
    • Asked either:
    • Is there a greater than 1% chance of nuclear war occurring soon?
    • Is there less than a 90% chance of a nuclear war occurring soon?
    • Results:
    • Participants who received the 1% question anchor estimated a 10% chance of nuclear war, while those who received the 90% anchor estimated a 25% chance
  65. What did Greenberg et al find in 1986 that was similar to Plous' findings on the anchoring heuristic?
    In a mock jury study, participants asked to consider first a harsh verdict were subsequently harsher in their final decision than participants asked to first consider a lenient verdict
  66. What do studies on the anchoring heuristic generally tell us about judgments?
    Our judgments on a range of issues are significantly influenced by the point at which we start our deliberations
  67. What types of cognitive strategies could a person employ as a motivated tactician?
    • Speed/ease
    • Accuracy/logic
  68. What factors determine whether we use heuristic vs systematic strategies?
    Time constraints, cognitive overload, low importance, little information regarding issue = heuristic
  69. After the perceiver decides between systematic vs heuristic processing what happens?
    • In systematic processing the perceiver acts like a naïve scientist, using rational, logical analysis of available information – higher accuracy
    • In heuristic processing the perceiver acts like a cognitive miser making quick and easy analyses – lower accuracy
  70. Is heuristic processing or systematic processing more accurate?
    Systematic
  71. ***Who defined the motivated tactician theory?
    Kruglanski, 1996
  72. What is categorization?
    • Process of understanding what something is by knowing what other things it is equivalent to, and what other things it is different from
    • Way of classifying some collection of objects, events, opinions, attitudes, concepts or people
  73. What is the classical view of social categorization?
    Bruner, Goodnow, and Austin (1956) – category membership determined via defined features, if one feature was missing, then it was something else
  74. What is the problem with the classical view of social categorization?
    Many categories have uncertain or “fuzzy” boundaries – Rosch, 1978
  75. What is the newer view on social categorization?
    • Not all or nothing
    • Members are more or less typical of a category
    • Typicality is variable
  76. What are prototypes?
    Most representative members of a category
  77. What happens to categorization of less typical members of a category?
    May be slower/error-full because they are less available
  78. How are categories defined (in general)?
    By prototypes
  79. When we are dealing with social categories, we are dealing with?
    Stereotypes
  80. Why do we come to perceive some characteristics as typical of certain categories?
    • Social learning and exposure
    • Illusionary correlations
  81. What can social learning and exposure lead to?
    Stereotypes
  82. What are stereotypes?
    Prototypes that are social categories
  83. What is an illusionary correlation?
    Two variables are associated with one another when there is little or no actual association
  84. What can illusionary correlations lead to?
    Negative stereotypes associated with minority groups
  85. What study did Hamilton and Gifford perform in 1976?
    • Illusory correlations
    • Methods:
    • Asked participants to read info about people from two made-up groups
    • Twice as much info was provided about group A (majority) than group B (minority)
    • Twice as much of the info provided for both groups involved desirable behaviors rather than undesirable
    • Results:
    • More of the undesirable negative behaviors were attributed to group B, than group A
    • Participants believed that negative behaviors were more characteristic of the smaller group than the bigger group
    • Explained this through shared distinctiveness
  86. How are categories structured?
    • Heterogeneous
    • Homogenous
  87. What is a heterogeneous category?
    Perceived to be made up of many sorts of people
  88. What is a homogenous category?
    Perceived to made up of only a few types of people who are all very similar to each group
  89. What is the outgroup homogeneity effect?
    The general tendency to perceive outgroup members to be more homogenous than ingroup members
  90. What study did Shapiro and Penrod perform in 1986?
    • Outgroup homogeneity effect
    • Found that white people found it difficult to tell Asian faces apart, and Asian people found it difficult to tell white faces apart
  91. What study did Park and Rothbart (1982) perform?
    • The outgroup homogeneity effect in how people structure their memory
    • People remember more about someone they encounter from their own group than another group
  92. What are the two main reasons we categorize?
    • Saves us time and cognitive processing
    • Categorization provides meaning
  93. How does categorizing save time and cognitive processing?
    Frees up cognitive resources for other tasks
  94. How does categorization provide meaning?
    • Reduces uncertainty
    • Provides prescriptive norms for understanding ourselves in relation to others
  95. When do we categorize? (3)
    • Temporal primacy
    • Perceptual salience
    • Chronic accessibility
  96. What is temporal primacy?
    We categorize on the basis of the features we encounter first
  97. What are consequences of categorization?
    • Heightened accessibility of stereotype consistent information
    • Categorization and prejudice
  98. How does categorization lend to heightened accessibility of stereotype consistent information?
    Selective encoding of subsequently acquired target information
  99. How does categorization lead to prejudice?
    People recall more positive than negative information about someone from their own group, but more negative than positive information about someone in another group
  100. Categorization and unconscious behavior
    When people think about categories, they can unconsciously begin to act in line with the stereotype associated with those categories
  101. Behavioral assimilation
    When people think about categories, they can unconsciously begin to act in line with the stereotype associated with those categories
  102. What defines typicality in categorization?
    Prototypes
  103. What were the methods and results of Bargh, Chen and Burrows study in 1996?
    • Investigated whether priming participants with a social category would lead them to behave in line with the stereotypical traits associated with that category
    • Methods:
    • Participants were primed with words related to the elderly stereotype vs neutral words using a "scrambled sentence task"
    • They were then told the experiment was finished
    • The experimenters then timed/observed the participants walking down the hall
    • Results:
    • Participants who had been primed with the elderly stereotype walked significantly slower from the experimental norm
    • The participants behaviorally assimilated to the stereotype they were primed for
  104. What happens a stereotype threat is felt?
    The individuals tend to show impaired performance on dimensions related to that stereotype
  105. What is self-efficacy?
    Your estimation of how effective you are
  106. What study did E.G. Schmader perform in 2002 on stereotype threats?
    • Stereotype threat and gender identification
    • Methods:
    • Female and male participants indicated how important their gender identity was to them at the beginning of the semester
    • Two conditions - gender identity relevant condition and gender identity irrelevant
    • Participants then took a difficult math test
    • Results:
    • In the gender identity relevant condition, women performed significantly worse than men if they HIGHLY identified with their gender group, proving the stereotype threat effect
  107. Dual process theory in social cognition
    Either a heuristic versus systematic approach is used when forming impressions of others
  108. In the dual process theory, heuristic and systematic approaches are comparable to what?
    Cognitive miser and naive scientists
  109. How is impression formation in the dual process theory based on?
    • Categorization (heuristic)
    • Individuation (systematic)
  110. What is decategorization in the dual process theory in social cognition?
    A switch from using categorization to individuation (target primarily defined as individual rather than group member)
  111. Do we want people to use categorization or individuation when forming impressions of others?
    Individuation because it defines individually instead of in groups
  112. Cohen performed what study in 1981 about consequences of categorization?
    • Methods:
    • Showed participants a videotape of a woman having a birthday dinner
    • They were told she was a waitress or a librarian
    • Results:
    • Participants told she was a waitress remembered her drinking beer
    • Participants told she was a librarian remembered her wearing glasses
    • This illustrates how stereotypes can influence our attention and what we remember from any social scene
  113. Gaertner and McLauglin (1983) found what about categorization and prejudice?
    Found that white participants were faster to name positive words after they had seen the racial category 'white' compared to 'black'
  114. Dijksterhuis and van Knippenberg performed what study in 1998?
    • On behavioral assimilation
    • Found that participants who imagined a typical professor subsequently outperformed those who imagined a typical secretary, on a general knowledge task
    • Although priming did not change the participants' actual intelligence, it did temporarily induce participants to behave differently in their reaction to the multiple choice task
  115. What did Steele and Aronson find out about stereotype threats in 1995?
    Found that African-Americans underperformed on a test when they were told it was indicative of intelligence, but they also found simply asking African-Americans to state their race before taking a test reduced the students' subsequent performance

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