Social influence notes - Psychology AQA B

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Social facilitation
Social facilitation = the tendency for people to perform better on tasks in the presence of others
than when alone.
Social inhibition = the tendency for people to perform worse in the presence of others than when
alone
Arousal = the level of alertness than an individual displays on a task. It is affected by the presence
of an audience.
Audience = a group of people observing a task being performed
Audience effect = the impact of the presence of an audience on the individual task performance
Co-actors = where 2 or more people perform the same task as each other
Dominant response = the response that a person is most likely going to display

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Social facilitation is the tendency for people to perform better on tasks in the presence of others
than when alone. A number of psychologists have investigated this phenomenon, although some
have found the opposite effect ­ this is called social inhibition, the tendency for people to perform
less well in the presence of others than when alone.
Arousal theory explains social facilitation in terms of the arousal, or alertness, which is
automatically caused by the mere presence of other people.…read more

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Research has shown that any distraction e.g. noise can cause social facilitation and social
inhibition; the distraction does not have to be an audience.
Social facilitation in animals can also be explained by this theory; it is possible that animals can
become distracted by the presence of others.…read more

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Evaluation of social facilitation research
Audiences in empirical studies tend to be passive; whilst in real life would be more active. There is
therefore a lack of generalisation.
Studies typically ignore individual differences e.g. In Triplett's study, 25% actually showed
inhibition when in the presence of a co-actor. Individuals in a team may actually perform worse
social loafing.
Lack of ecological validity as experiments are typically artificial, yet experimental method does not
control variables and establish cause and effect so is objective.…read more

Comments

Jade

AMAZING NOTES! Thank you soo much these are super helpful :)

Lauren Stubbs

You're welcome!!

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