Complete Revision Notes on Social Approach Unit 1 Edexcel

These are complete revision notes on unit 1 edexcel psychology AS, the Social Approach. It contains studies, experiments, theory, methodology and their respective evaluations. They have been written with a lot of detail. Enjoy!

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  • Created by: Aina
  • Created on: 16-05-11 13:42

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Social approach
Key assumptions

Interaction between individuals, between groups and in society.



Data-gathering technique which asks questions directly to Ps
Face-to-face situation- opportunity to expand questions
Series of questions.

Interview chosen instead of questionnaire:

Explore more in-depth questions
Participants need reassurance
Access is difficult

3 types:

Structured interview-…

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Contains both open and ended questions, although usually contains + closed
Normally researcher is not present.


A set procedure is used, so all respondents will be asked the same questions so
it is reliable.
They can be carried by post, so there is no need for the researcher…

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Objectivity- standard questions means numbers can be generated and %
Reliability- same questions for all Ps, easy to replicate.
No validity- force P to choose from set answers which P may not totally agree.
If Ps don't say what they think, not true results.
Choice answers mean different…

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Response bias- questions are set in a way P knows what to answer.

Ethical guidelines

Five ethical guidelines: informed consent, deception, debrief, competence + right to

Informed consent= when informing P about study + they agree to take part.

In order to be moral, Ps should know everything

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Difficult expensive + time consuming.

Opportunity sampling= Ps are chosen if they are available at time of study.

Easy + quick
Lack of representation, difficult to generalise findings

Volunteer/self selecting= Ps select themselves.

Motivated Ps
Volunteers may be different from the rest, as they have volunteered. Special


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Social identity theory


Stereotype= develop idea about someone + apply them to similar larger group
Prejudice= opinion, usually negative, based on a stereotype. Attitude is
Discrimination= action carried, consequence of prejudice.

Social Identity Theory (1969)

Based on Tajfel + Turner ideas
Prejudice comes from two different groups being…

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To see if Germans were different for the acts they carried when Holocaust
To see how people obey orders which makes them distressed.


Milgram advertised for volunteers for an experiment about human learning. Ps
were paid.
At Yale Uni
P believed he was drawing lots with another P…

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Ps did not felt responsible- less responsibility.
Evolution theory- Ps followed orders as it was an expt for human learning, for
the good of society.

Variation study of Milgram


To see if the high levels of obedience were due to the location of experiment,
Yale Uni.


Milgram did…

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Ps recruited by newspaper + paid a small fee
Applicant (confederate) was in a separate room to P
P told test was about how stress affects performance + that applicant thought
it was real
Ps told to do negative comments (from a script) so applicant did badly. P knew…

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No task validity- Ps are not used to give negative remarks to applicants for a
Some differences (time difference of 20 yrs, different countries) make data
difficult to be compared to Milgram.
Ps deceived- they thought applicant thought it was real + had no real right to


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