Learning Objectives

Identify how we can make errors in judgments about others and how to reduce those incorrect judgments using psychological tools.

  • Define the fundamental attribution error—and discuss whether it is really “fundamental.”
  • Identify the reasons we are slow to revise our first impressions in the light of new evidence.
  • Explain the variables that contribute to attraction.

Estimate which situations can have the greatest impact on behavioral change.

  • Differentiate between informational and normative influence.
  • List the conditions for persuasive communication.
  • Explain why a change in behavior can elicit a change in attitude.
  • Identify when groups arouse us, relax us, and sometimes make bad decisions.

Contrast variables that increase helping and aggressive behavior.

  • Determine the types of aversive events that predispose people to behave aggressively.
  • Contrast aggression with altruism.
  • List situational factors that influence helping behavior.

Appraise the contribution of culture to our perceptions of the world and others.

  • Evaluate how cultures influence the way people see themselves in relation to others.
  • Define individualism and collectivism, and discuss how cultures differ on this dimension.
  • Explain the role of the environment in our self-conceptions.

Recognize the variables that contribute to prejudice, and assess the brain’s role in stereotype development.

  • Explain how discrimination is a by-product of our thinking.
  • Discuss whether we can control stereotyping.
  • Identify the motives that fuel prejudice.
  • Create an intervention for treating implicit racial bias.