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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

Key assumptions of Social Psychology:
Social psychology examines human behaviour ­ the role of the individual's relationships with other people
and groups, and how culture and society affect behaviour

Key Features of the Social Approach:
We are constantly influenced by other individuals, often…

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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

At 270V the `learner' gave agonising screams and at 300V the `learner refused to answer

If `teacher' refused to administer a shock the `experimenter' would say one of four scripted verbal
> `please continue'
> `the experiment requires that you continue'

Page 3

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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

had the least effect the orders of the experimenter had the most effect. This suggests that the conclusion
that obedience results from orders given by an authority figure is correct.

Theory (1) ­ Milgram's Agency Theory 1973, 1974
participants in Milgram's study experienced…

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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

Theory (2) ­ Social Identity Theory, Tajfel 1970
Social Identity Theory acts as an explanation as to why prejudice develops

Prejudice = making a judgement, usually negative, about something or someone, without full knowledge
Discrimination = treating people differently according to their group…

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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

U ­ Explains prejudice and discrimination in football violence, gang violence/warfare, and terrorism.
However, many have said the theory presents racism as `natural' but many others disagree. Also, it does
not explain individual differences, different people act differently towards the outgroup.

T ­…

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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

Research Methods

Strengths Weaknesses

Closedended questions
Generate standard replies that Not valid because they force a
can be easily analysed and choice of answer (might not be
compared the answer respondents would
If questions are repeated, they Answers may mean different

Page 7

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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

Usually involves good controls Reduces information about
such as wellstructured questions people to over simplified statistics
or clearly specified set of
answers, so can be replicated
and tested for reliability

Types of Sample Advantage Disadvantage

Random Provides the best chance of an The…

Page 8

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Unit 1: Social Psychology The Social Approach

Semistructured interview = has set questions, some of which can be explored further by

Subjectivity and Objectivity:

Subjectivity = when the analysis of results includes input from the person doing the analysis
Objectivity = when there is no bias affecting the results,…


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