Psych 456/556 Questions to Ponder

(Chs. 1, 9, & 2 in The Social Animal)

1. How does the hindsight bias make social psychology seem "obvious?"

2. Distinguish among the 3 kinds of responses to social influence Aronson describes.

3. "When physical reality is unclear, other people become a major source of information." Which studies that you read about in Chapter 2 that illustrate this phenomenon? Can you think of other examples in which you have relied on other people's behavior when you were unclear about what was going on?

4. Recall an incident when you witnessed an emergency. How did you feel? What did you do? What did other people do? Did the situation fit with the research you read about? What would the answers have been to the questions Aronson says people ask themselves when deciding whether to help out or not?

5. What is groupthink?

6. How is social psychology a science? How is it an art?

7. Why do social psychologists do experiments? What are some of the difficulties they face that are unique to social psychology as opposed to other sciences?

8. What are some special ethical issues in doing social psychology research? What are some ways of dealing with these issues?

9. What is mundane realism? What is experimental realism? Can either be found in a laboratory setting? In a field study?