My revision notes for Psychology PSYA3 :)

I got 94/100 on this exam which was a massive suprise! So I hope they help :) Fern x

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  • Created on: 11-04-12 15:11
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Each partner tries to maximise rewards and minimise costs.
For relationship to be worthwhile, the rewards have to outweigh the costs. PROFITS =REWARDS ­ COSTS
Rewards can include: Sex, Companionship, Being cared for.
Costs can include: Effort, Financial investment, Time wasted
Social exchange theory stresses commitment to a relationship is dependant on the rewards.
Comparison line is a standard measure to judge present and previous relationships. A new relationship should exceed the comparison line of the previous
relationship to seem worthwhile. It's also used to judge if current relationship is worthy compared to the last one
Rusbult supports the SET as it explains why some women stay in abusive relationships. He argues that people should stay in the relationships if the profit is high
(e.g. financial investment, children, security etc). However some people stay in relationships when there are little or no alternatives (e.g. no where to go/no
money). as a result, this contradictory evidence goes against the SET as people remain in relationships although costs clearly outweigh the profits.
Rusbult conducted socially sensitive research as it refers to women in abusive relationships This has a negative effect as it states women should stay in abusive
relationships if profits outweigh the costs or if there's a form of profit. Therefore this discourages people from leaving abusive relationships. as a result, research
has a negative impact on society and when studying this area ­ care needs to be taken.
Simpson et al used SET by looking at how people in relationships deal with potential alternatives by asking participants to rate people of the opposite sex.
Participants already in relationships gave lower ratings.
However the SET doesn't explain why people leave relationships despite no alternatives.
Marelich used SET to show individual differences between profit and loss. men and women use profit and loss in different ways (e.g. males find that sex is
profitable but for women it's a cost) Research showed that sexual deception is an important part of the SET. Overall, this supports the SET as pleasure and
positive relationship outcomes result in rewards and unwanted sex/guilt/lack of trust result in costs.
Marelich used selfreport methods such as surveys, and People can lie or exaggerate about the state of their relationship in order to be viewed favourably by
others. Therefore there's a social desirability bias presnt, which could have an impact on the final validity of the results.
as a result, Marelich's results are flawed. He also used students in his research, therefore there is a population bias as it uses students as an example of maintaining
longterm relationships
This theory is relevant to many different relationships.
This proves that the theory has real life applications and is useful.

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The social exchange theory can also be used to explain individual differences between and within individuals. Differences change over time because alternatives
change ­ changing the comparison line.
The social exchange theory is therefore useful in real life.
Theory has been criticised for focusing too much on the individual's perspective and ignoring social aspects of a relationship.
Theory is essentially selfish as it suggests that we would go after the most attractive partner as they provide maximum rewards and basic costs remained the same.…read more

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Griffit and Guay conducted a study on how people rated experimenters after experiencing a reward from them or not. The participants were asked to perform a
creative task for the experimenter, and when they'd finished, the experimenter either evaluated it positively, or gave no evaluation. Those that received a positive
evaluation rated the experimenter more highly than those that didn't receive an evaluation. However, Hays found that we gain satisfaction from giving as well as
receiving.…read more

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Dissatisfied ­ One or both partners feels that there are real issues with the relationship and feel dissatisfied.
2. Exposure ­ The problems felt are brought out into the open.
3. Negotiation ­ Exposure of the dissatisfaction may lead to negotiation with the partner through discussion
4. Resolution ­ Partners may attempt to resolve the problems highlighted in the negotiation stage.
5. Termination ­ If the attempts to resolve the issues fail, the relationship comes to an end.…read more

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Supported by reallife breakups. Undergraduates surveyed who had recently been through a breakup. Said they experienced emotional distress also personal
growth. Breaking up gave them new insights into themselves and a clearer idea about future partners. Through Grave dressing & resurrection they were able to
get on with their lives
Research has shown women are more sensitive to the ways in which the relationship is failing to the live up to expectations. However reasons for break up are
the same for both sexes.…read more

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Buss & Schmitt ­asked how many sexual partners' people would want over the next 2 years, next decade and over a lifetime. Men average 2 years =8 and
women =1. Men average lifetime =18 and women =4 or 5Also in all studies the participants may give `social desirable' answers, which they believe are the most
accepted by society and what they believe the researcher wants.
Buss ­ got male and female students to imagine their partner either having sex or loving another person.…read more

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Parental Certainty maternal grandparents are certain a grandchild is genetically related to them, while paternal grandparents are not. In keeping with the
evolutionary explanation, care and resource allocation will therefore come from maternal grandparents rather than paternal ones.…read more

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Individualistic emphasis on the individual, Their goals, rights, attitudes and needs. Consequently there is a focus on acquaintences, close friendships and
intimate partnerships. Monogamy (due to laws).
Voluntary choice with relationships due to a greater availability of potential partners.
Discontinuous change is regarded as important and inevitable so there may be an increased preference for short term relationships and increased rates of
divorce. Rules in relationships may also be less important, if relationships are broken they can be left and another found.…read more

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Physical Attraction
Cunningham ­ high degree of agreement in psychical attraction and different races, large eyes, facial symmetry, small noses, dilated pupils, large smiles and well
groomed hair.
Singh ­ Low waist to hip ratio.
Wetsman ­ Tanzania men, higher weight women are more attractive regardless of WHR, is that just westernised? Yu and Shepard In an isolated area in
matsigenka men prefer a higher Waist to hip ratio.…read more

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Social Learning Theory
The bobo doll experiment by Bandura which was aimed to see whether children may learn aggressive behaviour through rewards and punishment
provides supports for the social learning theory. Children who observed aggressive behaviours being rewarded those in the control group and acted more
aggressively than those who saw the model punished.
The models used distinctive actions, so the children's behaviours could be distinguished as imitation.…read more


Matthew Cleverly

Good information for revision, however hasn't been spell checked and there are some grammatical issues


Sorry mate but we can't all spell and be grammaticlly correct when you are revising the night before


Much easier than writing all of this out of the textbook, great content too. Thanks a lot, you've saved me haha


Theres some good resources here too if you guys need it: Psychology AQA A

Just click on "Resources" - lots of free stuff, past questions, papers and essay structure advice for AS.

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