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psych 308, mad psych students are dumb


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social brain hypothesis (rdunbar)
humans have gigantic body to brain ration - to consumes 20% of our oxygen
if was not usefull to our body evolution would of got rid of it.
only relaible predictor of brain size is social group size.

rule of 150
the natural group size human brain processes well
batallions ubc, family freinds

all hunter gather socies were 150, if larger they split up.

Broken Windows Theory (Wilson and Kelling)
crime is affected by perceptions of disorder
imagine you are living in a neiboourhood were there are borken windows and nobody cares, the messages is we dotn care about disorder, it is okay to have borken windows and thus it is okay to do more violent crimes.
the moral of broken windows theory
small situational changes have big effects (power of the situation)

non- conscicious interpretations of social reality matter

Fundamental ATtribution error
underestimated the importance of situational inlfuences on behvoir and overestmating the importance of personality traits on behvoir.


helpfull seminary students people who devote their life to help people

"it does not matter what type of person you are just how much time you have"

power of the costual
people often perceive or construe the same stimulus or situation in dofferent ways.
cooperation game
construal :wall street game vs. Community game
does personality matter, not really.
Obesity Rates lower in france
portion sizes much smaller in France than in North America. even fast food production is smaller.
Portion size or # of portions influence amount eaten.
create an idea that it is the perfect amount to eat.

Unit Bias - Geier Rozin and Doros
Put a stand with junk food with portion sizes, people eat more when you give them bigger portion sizes
non conscious thinking
conscious awareness does not capture all of psychological reality ( ice berg metaphor)
awareness of non conscious thoughts do not necesarily change them having a ethic bias, sometimes they can
yet non coscious process affect behvoir.

change blindness
our brain sees big major change, small minor chagnes are not seen, but when you are conscouly aware of it you see it.
moral dumbfounding
morality should be based on harm and care, injustice if no one is harmed and no injustice involved it is not immoral.

our moral conscience is shaped by our powerful emotional reaction to it.

morality profound culture difference.

physical attractiveness stereotype affects life outcomes
attractive people earn more

MBA were rated on 5 point scale in terms of their attractiveness. each unit of attractiveness was associated with an additional 2600/yr salary for males and 2150 yr for females.
works more strongly for males

Distal Explanations
evolution - explaining human behaviors in terms of the cultural context in which humans live
no tmuutaly exclusvie but complementary
evolution and human behvoir
traits that enhance the probability of survival and reproduction are passed on to subsequent generations, traits that are not conductive for reproduction less likley to pass on.
evolutionary psychology
Evolutionary Psychology
- Human mental faculties shaped by natural selection
o (ex. person A has fear of tigers, person B has no fear of tigers – who is more likely to survive - those with a fear of predators – and it gets passed on)
o (ex. children has a natural fear of snakes (which doesn’t make much sense today) but children have no fear of cars (which kills most children today) – it is because our brain evolve for the Savannah)
- Over a very long time span (historical perspective)
o We cannot look at modern time to understand human mental faculties but to look at history – our life in Savannah - - ex. our craving for sugar and fat from a young age – because in ancestor environment where our brain were shaped – fat and sugar rare and are sources of calories that can be stored. - - because people don’t store food – they go through famine. – this makes no sense anymore as we can store food.
- Functionally specialized mental faculties more than general problem solving abilities (the 4Fs)
o Specific problems have specific solutions, can’t have general solutions for specific problems.
o Ex. problem of going against predators and finding a mate - - two different problems.
- Explains why some aspects of human psychology are universal
o (4Fs – Fleeing, Fighting, Feeding, Sex) - - universal –

evolved face recognition device

prosopagnosia; selective impariment
unable to recognize faces even though vision is perfectly fine.
face to face interaction has been what human history has been about.

kin selection and altruism
helping others due to the degree of reladness, the stronger the genetic relatedness the more volunteering to help, (cunningham et al. 1995)
this pattern holds across cultures)
naturalistic fallacy
what is natural / biological must be good
it is natural so we should do it, or it is unnatural so we should not do it.
evolution reasons why men have agressive tendencies - hunter gatherer have common warfares (people naturally have wars it is not good.

biology is desnity fallacy
if behvoir is inlfuenced by biology it cannot be altered by experience or culture.

cultural learning is socially transmitted.
capacity most developed in humans to learn by observation and imitaiton from others, bird singing is not completely genetic, they have teh acapcity to sing but it is activted by lesing to other birds.

allows the accumulation of knowlege , you dont have to learn it yourself.

cultural homogeneity fallacy
- culture is a statistical distribution of beliefs and behaviours, with average differences; but individual differences within each culture
- (I may be a certain culture – but I am also an individual)

participant observation
common in anthropology and socoliogy, psychology use it less so.

pros; external validity - observing natural human behvoir in its natural enviroment and not interfering with it

con - the observer is inlfuencing peopels behvoir without realizing it

no causal attribution

experimenter bias.

correlational research
examine whether two variables are related

varies between -1 and 1

no causality

can you think of any problems that link red wine and corinary hart disease

3rd variable. directionality issues.

exposure to some cause affects behvoir
people with certain characteristics tend to choose certain enviroment or things.
random sample
taken at random from the population
conveience sample
taken from some available subgroup in the population
sampling problems in psychology
rarely use representative samples.


american undergraduate 4000x more likely to be in a study than anyone else.

Why Weird
wealthy nations can afford to do so it is a luxury, india focus on engineers and shit.
the social self
development of self awareness, place a mark on a childs forhead, young than make the conneciton between himself and the image in the mirror by about 18-24 months it notces the red dot an ameks the conneciton between themslves and the mirror.
independent self
stable chracteristics across situations personality traits, attitudes

interdependent self
roles relationships, group membership both selves co-exist in all individuals but differentially accessible.
a cultural pattern in which individual goals and preferences take president over group goals

mainly western culture
independent self

a cultural pattern in which group goals kick ass.
most of the world has this pattern
self characterization
american undergraudates, more personal characteristics

Kenyan undergraduates more personal charactersitics

workers in Nairobi, mainly social relations.

Masai tribes people think of themselves as fundimentaly related to their group of themselves an individual.

fitting in vs. individual capacity
Percent choosing individual capacity

USA – 92 %
Can 91 %
Aus 91%
Netherlands 88%
Germany 87
UK 71
Belgium 69
Italy 62
France 57
Sweden 53 %
Jap 49%
Singapore 39%

birth Order and Personality
effect of birth order on personality first noted by alfred alder

first born; receive attention and resources later, dethroned, by later born, why the new one is getting attetion

later borns; receive less attetion resources, jealous of privileges of privileges of first born.

Sulloways Birth Order and Personality
Pro-establishment vs. anti establishment achievements for first vs. later borns
o Sulloways’s historical analysis of reaction of 3000 scientists to new theories
 First borns more likely to resist/reject the theories
 Later borns more likely to accept the theories
 Darwin’s evolutionary theory (back then highly controversial): 83% of proponents were later borns; 17% of proponents were first borns
 Dinosaur extinction theory: the gigantic meteor hit the earth – most supporters were later borns

two kinds of evidence of heritability of personality
Two kinds of evidence for heritability of personality
Heritability – the degree to which a certain trait (physical or psychological) is influenced by genes
It is not absolute – it ranges from 0-1, 0 no heritability (preference – do you drink coffee or tea in the morning), 1 guaranteed heritability (dominant eye color brown – brown, no environmental influence), usually something in the middle (height ~.5 has genetic factors and environmental factors - anything that affects growth hormones; ex. nutrition, amount of sleep)

Interested in knowing to what extent is trait heritable and what are those traits?
- Adoption studies
o Compare one’s personality to adopted parents (low) vs biological parents (high)
 The child shares 50% of genes with biological parents and 0% of genes with adopted parents, want to test the effect of environment.
o Tease apart genetic influence to environmental influence
 In typical family where child are growing up with biological patterns – and child grow up to have similar personality as parent – what causes that personality? – the environment or the genes?
- Twin studies
o Compare personality of identical twins (100%) vs. fraternal twins (50%)
 The children are under shared environment (own family)– holding that constant – we are only measuring the genetic

twin studies
compare the personality of identical twins vs fraternal twins
the children are under a shared enviroment, holding that constant so we are only measauring genetics
adoption studies
compare ones personality to adopted parents, vs biologic parents

child shares 50% of genes with biological parents 0% with adopted parents, want to test the effect of environmental influence.

heritability of personality Traits
each line is a study correaltion grouping many studies
some traits are very heritable, some are not
extroversion is very heritable neurisim is hertaible but less so, conscientousness very midly heritable.

critique of heritability studies
between family environmental differences may not be that different

family environment is not the same for siblings

identical twins may be treated differently that fraternal twins.

High coefficient for IQ much lower in SES than high SES groups

Multiple Origins of self and personality
the enviroment we live in overrides our natural tendencies

our natural tendencies may shape what enviroment we choose to

enviroment work with the tendency they amplify each other and in a

self esteem
positive or negative overall evaluations you have of your self

trait self esteem
enduring level of confidence and affection that people have for themsevles across time
state self esteem
dynamic changable self evaluations that are experinced as momentary feelings about the self.
implicit self esteem
evaluative feelings of ourselves that are outside of conscious awareness
influence of culture on self esteem
cultural change shifts in self esteem

self esteem and self enhancement is more in north america

Japanese have low self esteem, having been in N.A. have high self esteem.
by third generation asian canadains cant tell differances in self esteem.

confucian culture
the need for improvement, how can i improve myself, wants to focus on flaws to improve. verse west self esteem where you do not want to focus on the flaws

self enhancement;
seeing oneself in a postive light, exaggerating ones favorable attributes, minimizing unfavorable ones.
self acceptence
valuing oneself without attachments (unconditional positive regard.
self enhancement strategies
strategic downward social comparison
unrealistic optomism
exaggerated sense of control
better than average affect
these are more pronounced in western cultures

downward social comparison
to get an ego boost, we strategically compare ourselves to others who are less smart, health, less talented
unrealistic optamism
having unrealstic optomism about their prospects in lfie.

peopel think they are more likely to end up in good stuff.

exaggerated sense of control
illusory beleif that the self can influence random events

- Lottery study (Langer, 1975)
o Either chose the ticket (chose the numbers) or given one by the researcher. When asked to sell back:
o Given : $1.96
o Chosen: $9

better than average affect
like wobegon
consequences of high self enhancement and self esteem
high self esteem predicts inuitive, resillience and postive feelings.

very low self esteem is a risk factor for anxiety and drug use.

Japan lower self esteem but lower depression to


difficulty accepting critisicm cannot improve self
when ego is threatened, agression and putting others down.

narcissism and inflated ego, social difficulties esp. when ego is threatened. narcism.

i think i can
Average 8th grade science scores
- East asian countries tend to score higher than western countries
Percentage of 8th grade science students with high self confidence in learning science
- Western societies – have high self esteem – being told they are doing well – over confidence hinder their self improvement
- East Asian countries – have lower self esteem but they scored higher in the tests.

contingent self esteem
is self worth based on conditions that we or others place upon ourselves.
inconsistent self esteem
is consciously held inlflated views of the self that masks underlying insecurities that one is unaware of.
self esteem collides
inconsistent self esteem leads narcissim and defensiveness

high explicit self esteem + low implicit self esteem = narcissism

secure high self esteem
is unconditional acceptance of a indiviudal by another person or oneself.
unconditional postive regard
i love you no matter what you do.
self acceptance
a healthier form of self esteem

accept that there are flaws and thus more willing to change.

self compassion, not narcissism

accepting responsibility for ones life, not blame

acceptance of the world is not defeatism or complacency, opposite of reactivity

victor Fankl
noticed people reacted differnetly to the same de humanizing situation of the death..

- “A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears toward a human being … or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life. He knows the “why” for his existence, and will be able to bear almost any “how” “ pg 127

does explanatory Style Early in Life predict
- Longitudinal study – measure optimism level of participants and detailed medical records of the subjects
- Correlation between physical health (visit to doctors and illness) and optimism
- Different correlation at different ages – at 30-40 – how optimistic you are does not have any relation to physical health, from 40 and upwards – how optimistic you are have a higher correlation to physical health -- Correlation up to 0 – until age 40 (once you reach 40 – more variability – some people remain healthy some get sick)
- Control from young – in case being healthy makes you optimistic – (correlation study – selection explanation


inferring the causes of ones own and others behavior
Internal/external explanatory style
maybe a freind lost interest in chemistry (internal)

maybe the friend is going through a lot of stress at home (external)

stable unstable explanatory style
she failed becuase she has perimientaly lost interest in univeristy
she failed becuase she lost inerest in this professor.
global specific explanatory style
a wide variety of things are happening or a specific thing is happening
Optimistic attribution style
Optimistic attribution style
o Negative events are viewed as external, unstable specific
o Ex. break up - it is not me, this long distance relationship didn’t work

- Pessimistic attribution style
o Negative events are viewed as internal stable global
o Ex. break-up – I am a bad relationship partner, it is always going to be that way, in fact I suck at everything

Optimistic Attributional style predicts
- Academic achievement (More self efficacious )
- Physical health
- Longevity (nun study)
- Relationship satisfaction
- Likelihood of being elected to office
o (Chris Peterson) – analyze presidential candidates running for office – quoting from their campaign trails and speeches
Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill – not optimistic- suffered from depression

personality psychology
is a close cousin of social psychology but it stresses individual difference in behavior rather than in social situation
cognitive psychology
the study of how people perceive think about and remember aspects of the world
channel factors

Kurt Lewin

introduced the a concept of channel factors to help explain why certian circumstances appear more unimportant on the surface can have great consqeunces for behavoir, either facilitating it or blocking it.

yale innoculation study

gestalt psychology
approach stresses the fact that objects are perceived not by means of some automatic registering device but by active usualy unconcous interpreations of the world, prisoners dilemma
generalized knowledge about physical and social world such as what kind of behvoir to expect when dealing with a minister, sales clerk, or professsors
schemas that we have for people of various kinds research on steorotypes examine one of these person chemas and how they are applied and somtimes misapplied.
unconscious processes


just mentioning the word elderly makes people walk slower
group living, language and theory of mind
greater success in finding foraging areas access to makes other adaptive fictions. the ability to produce and understand langauge has facilitated the ability to live in groups and to convey not only emtions and intnetions but also beelifs and attidues.
infants and language
all infants are born with a full range of possible sounds (phenoms) that exist with language acquisition consists of dropping all the wrong phenoms that are not used by the childs particular langauge. thus children can learn to speak any langauge.
theory of mind
the ability to recognize that other people have needs and desires.

children recognize before the age of three that other peoples beliefs are false.

small amount of children could not play the candy box game.

ocean model of personality traits
openess to experince

from a evolutionary perspective these five traits are through of as strategies that enable the individual to adapt to the social environment and enhance the chances of survival and reproduce success.

mono zygotic
twins who originate from a single fertolized egg that splits exact replicas.
twins who origin from two differnt eggs fertilized by different sperm cells, like orignaly siblings but they share an average of half there genes.
macoby- culture gender and the social self
girls groups tend to focus on cooperative games that are oriented toward interpersonal relationships, boys groups tend to focus on cooperative gaves that are realted toward heirachy and distinction.
distinctiveness hypothesis

mcguire padawing singer

what is distinct about who you are is most central to your identity.
george mead

symbolic interaction ism

elaborated on the construal process that create social self

we come to know our social self by understanding how other people view us.


Social comparison theory

when people have no objective standard they can use to define their abilities they do so in a large part by comparing themselves to others.

donward social comparisons; help us define ourselves rather favorable giving a boost to our self esteem.

upward social comparison; particularly likely to include this when we aspire to be substantially better at some skill or when we wish to improve some component of our character or personality.


Better than Average Effect

people rate themesves as better than average, everyone makes numbers that are mathmatically impossible

when a situation was contexutlized, the better than average effect diminishes dramatically.

personal beliefs (self knowledge)
refer to our understanding of our own personality traits, like the big five, as well as our beliefs about other abilities and attributes our preferences tastes and talents.
social self beleifs
concern the roles duties and obligations we assume in groups.
rational self beleifs
refer to our identities in specific relationships.
collective self beleifs
referring to our idenity with the social collections in which we belong. in one study american colledge students define themselves primarly in terms of their personal attributes.
self reference effect
the tendency to elaborate on and recall infomration that is intograted into pre exisitng knowledge stuctures is more easily recalled.
self image bias
refers to the tendency to judge other peoples personalities according to thier similiarty or dissimilairty to our own

- Lewicki created a measure of how important the trait was in the participant’s judgment of the 20 indivuals. Lwsicki found that the traits that participants rated themselves most positively on were also the most important in their judgment of other people

torry Higgins Self Discrepency thoery
based on the idea that we all have an actual self that who we truley beleive our selves to be and that frequenlty we compare our acutal self with ideal and ought selfs, important motivation implications

ideal self
represents the wishes and aspirations we have about ourselves.
promotion focus
includes sensitivity to positive outcomes,

when primed to think about our ought self we expereince prevention focus.

promotion focus; cinludes sensitive to postive outcomes.

confirmation bias
tendency to test a proposition by searching for evidence that would support it

the danger of the confirmation bias then is that we look for one type of information we are likely to find it.

similarity of feature matching
the most common detering of whether a particular schema will be activated and brought to bear in interepting new information is the degree of simiarity or fit between the schema and the incoming stimulus.


ultimatum game

recent activation
expectations as we saw earlier influence information processes by lowering the threshold
the availability heuristic
the process whereby judtments of freqency of probabliy are based on the east pertinent instance are brought to mind.

how easy an example can be broght to mind

representativeness heuristic
 The process whereby judgments of likihood are based on the assessment of similarity between individual and a group of pro-o-types or betweens cause and event.

Disintegrating Ease of retrieval from the amount of information retrieved
result indicated that it was the ease of generating examples rather than the amount of examples generated which determiend success.
biased assessment of risk
suicide rates much higher the murder rates.

overestmiate the frequency of dramatic deahts.

Biased Estimates of contributions to joint projects.
with the availability heuristic in mind, social psychologist predifcted that people would tend to overstimate thier own contribution to a group on such projects.
refers to the ease or diffuclty associted with information processing.

base rate neglect
tendency for people to ignore or under utilize base rate information when assessing whether somone belongs to a particular category

planning fallacy
- Is something of a paradox because people overly optimistic assessment about their ability to finish a current project exist side by saide with their knowledge that the among of time needed in the past has typically exceeded
attitudes are sometimes inconsistent
in particular there can be a rift between the affective component and the cognitive compent, when there is a inconsistnecy between affective and cognative of an attitude it is hardly surpirsing that the attitdue may not predict behvoir very well.
Introspecting about reasons for our attitudes
The attudes of participants in the first group were much more accurate predictor of the current status of the relationship than were those of participants who had introspected about the reasons for liking their partners. Thinking about why we like someone can somlies lead to confusion about what our true feelings are.
- The contaminating effect of introspection is limited to those circumstances in which the true source of our attitudes are hard to pin down, as when the basis of our attitude is largely affective, in such cases the cognitive analysis sis likely to lead on seemingly plausible but misleading cognitive reasons. When the basis of our attitude is largely cognitive, however the search for reasons is more likely to yield the real reasons and introspection is unlikely to dimis the relationship between attitude and behavior.
- Regan and fazio were interested in whether the correlation between the student attitudes and their overt behavior was higher among the directly affected students, than among the others. Among the directly affected students those with strong attitudes about the crisis were much more likely to take relevant action that those with less strong option. Among student who ere

Mismatch Between general attitudes and specific Targets
highly specifc attitudes typically do a better job of predicting behvoirs

womens attitudes toward birth control.

balance theory
people try to maintain beleifs, cognition and sentiments.

For example: a Person who likes an Other person will be balanced by the same valence attitude on behalf of the other. Symbolically, P (+) > O and P < (+) O results in psychological balance.

This can be extended to objects (X) as well, thus introducing triadic relationships. If a person P likes object X but dislikes other person O, what does P feel upon learning that O created X? This is symbolized as such:

* P (+) > X * P (-) > O * O (+) > X
cognitive dissonance theory
festinger argued that people are troubled by inconsistency between their thoughts, sentiments and thier actions and tha tthey will expend psycholgoical energy to restore consistency
efforts justification
on campus perhaps fraternity hazing someone who undergoes painfull or humiliating initiation ritiual will have the need to beleive it was all worthwhile and one way to do that is to extol the virtues of being in a particular fraternaty.
self affirmation and dissoance steele
predicted that wearing a lab coat would affirm an important identity for sceince and no tbuisnes majors. the results support this, scince majors did not use dissonance practices.
is dissonance universal
for easterns it may be promted by a concern about the ability of the self to make a choice that would be aprroved by others.
Bems Self Perception Theory
according to bems people come to know thier own attitudes not as we would expect by looking inward, rather they look outward at their behvoir and the ocntext in which it had occured.
testing for arousal Zanna and cooper
- Dissonance theory posits that the inconsistency between behavior and prior attitudes or values produces an unpleasant physiological state that motivates people to reduce the inconsistency. No arousal no attitude change. Self perception theory in contrast contends that there is no arousal involved people coolly and rationally infer what their attitudes must be in light of their behavior and context in which it occurs.
- The investigators predicted that this effect would dissipate when the participant were told incorrectly that the drug would make them tense
- The greatest difference between participants in the free choice and no choice conditions that is the biggest dissonance effect was observed among participants who had been told that the drug would make them feel relaxed

dissoance or self perception thoery
- Dissonance reduction processes are invoked when people act in ways that are inconsistent with preexisting aptitudes that are clear cut and provide some importance. Self perception processes in contrast are invoked when behavior clashes with attitudes that are relatively vague or of little importance
System justification theory
those who benefit from a given system are those who are wealthier and occupying more powerful positions in a society have both a psychological and economic incentive to defend the system. those who do not beneift , have a psychologcal insentive to do so.
terror management Theory
strive for symbolic immpooranlty through the presevation of a valued worldview and the coniction that one has lived up to its values and presciptions.
morality saleince manipulations
john kerry vs george bush vote for bush when secuty goes up.
is self awareness uniquely human
toddlers as young as 2 year old pass the test.

gorillas and monkeys pass, (rest of the animal kingdom fail

self characterization study
American undergraduates – more personal characteristics
o American – sometimes don’t even put down their social roles
- Kenyan undergraduates – more personal characteristics
o (Most university students think more individualistic than the cultures they come from)
- Workers in Nairobi – mainly social relations
- Masai tribespeople – think of themselves as fundamentally related to their group, their role, not of themselves as individual.
- (Varies across culture)
- Most of world outside of middle class West is collectivistic
o (The WEIRD –er you get – the more individualistic you are – Education, Social Class, exposure to western ideas – makes you more individualistic)
o (Immigrants from China to Canada – very collectivistic – 1st gen – more individualistic, 2nd gen – even more Canadian – individualistic)
o (Bi-culture – ability to switch between individualistic and collective – depending on context and culture)

Birth Order Personality


first born; receive attention, try to maintain the order.

later born; receive less attention and resources jealous of privileges of first born.
second born, destorys world order

birth order personality and darwins theory
later borns were the ones who agreed

first borns were the one that did not agree with darwins theory.

bi cultural priming (Self Esteem Scale)
Chinese Canadian bi cultural students completed SE scane in English and chines

in English had higher self esteem than in Chinese.

IAT self esteem
reaction times measured in responce to postive and negative words

those who have low self esteem have low reaction times to postive words and fast reaction times to negtiave words. about thes elf.

self enhancement
seeing oneself in a postive ligh, exxaggerating ones favorable attributes, minmizing unfavorable ones.
does explanatory style early in life predict later physical health.
Longitudinal study – measure optimism level of participants and detailed medical records of the subjects
- Correlation between physical health (visit to doctors and illness) and optimism
- Different correlation at different ages – at 30-40 – how optimistic you are does not have any relation to physical health, from 40 and upwards – how optimistic you are have a higher correlation to physical health -- Correlation up to 0 – until age 40 (once you reach 40 – more variability – some people remain healthy some get sick)
- Control from young – in case being healthy makes you optimistic – (correlation study – selection explanation)

How we interpret things are important and have an impact on our health – but how??
Nuns and the detailed dairies
- Quote the nuns on level of optimism, and length of life
- Optimistic nuns at age 20-30 – are living longer

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