A2 Psychology - Aggression

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  • Created on: 23-02-16 14:41

SLT - A01

Suggests that aggression is learned, the theory proposes that aggressive behaviour is learnt via either observation or direct experience. A key part of this theory is the idea of reinforcement. If an individual is positively reinforced for their aggressive behaviour they will be more likely to repeat the behaviour in the future. Punishment = less likely.

Aggression can also be learnt indirectly via the observation of role models, if an individual observes a role model being rewarded for aggressive behaviour then they may imitate this behaviour themselves, this is known as vicarious reinforcement.

Factors that increase the likelihood that aggressive behaviour will be imitated includes:

  • The individuals ability to observe and store the information
  • The status of the role model
  • Whether the role model's behaviour was positively reinforced
  • The individuals levels of self-efficacy
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SLT - A02

Bandura (Supporting Research for SLT):

Used 66 children from a nursery school at Stanford University, three conditions. All children shown a video clip of an adult behaving aggressively towards a Bobo doll before being left to play with the doll themselves. Condition 1 = role model was rewarded. Condition 2 = role model was punished. Condition 3 = no consequence. Found that those who observed the role model being punished were the least aggressive to the doll and there was no difference in the other two groups. When offered a reward, all groups did. Supports because....

Williams (Supporting Research for SLT):

Studied the levels of aggression in boys and girls aged 6-11 in a community in Canada where TV had only just been introduced. He compared these to those who live with one TV channel and one which had several TV channels. He found that the levels of physical aggression increased in the 6-11 year olds who had never seen TV before, whereas there was no increase in either of the other two communities. Supports because....

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SLT - A02

Anderson and Dill (Supporting Research for SLT):

Conducted a study to investigate whether playing violent viedo games leads to the likelihood on individuals acting more aggressively. Used over 200 American college students. One group played a violent video game whilst the other played non-violent games. Afterwards they were allowed to punish an opponent with a loud blast of noise. Found that the goup who played the violent video games used longer blasts than the non-violent group. Suggests....

Oversimplified (Evaluation of SLT):

SLT can be citicised for being limited and oversimplified as it ignores a wealth of biological evidence which suggests aggression is due to genes and hormones. These pieces of evidence have good scientific validity and so should be taken into consideration when explaining the causes of aggression. It may be more plausible to take an approach which suggests that aggressive behaviour is due to both social and biological factors.

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SLT - A02

Deterministic (Evaluation of SLT):

Because it suggests aggression is learnt by observing aggressive role models and ignores the influence of free will and individual choice in aggression. This is an example of soft determinism because it isn't as deterministic as a genetic explanation of aggression. This is controversial because our legal system holds the view that people are responsible for their aggressive behaviour and therefore suggest that people do have free will.

Real World Applications (Evaluation of SLT):

Applications could include advising parents/guardians to limit childrens time viewing aggressive films or aggression in TV. This would mean that aggression is less likely to be observed and so then stored in memory ready to be imitated. Also, in the media, any aggressive behaviour could be punished as we now know from research that aggressive behaviour which is punished is less likely to be imitated by children.

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SLT - A02

Individual Differences (Evaluation of SLT):

Can be praised for being able to explain individual differences and cultural differences in aggression because not all of the children demonstrated the same levels of aggression, this could be due to differing levels of self-efficacy or due to the environment in which the different studies were placed.

Face Validity (Evaluation of SLT):

The SLT provides an explanation as to why children learn and repeat some behaviour and not others, it has been praised for explaining why a child would be motivated to imitate aggressive behaviour without the presence of a role model. Therefore has good face validity.

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Deindividuation - A01

Deindividuation is a psychological state in which an individual loses their sense of identity when placed in a group situation. LeBon proposed that this occurs because being in a group provides anonymity, which difuses personal responsibility and allows impulsive, irrational behaviour to take place. The deindividuation theory is used to explain how usually rational, civilised individuals can become aggressive when placed in a group or crowd situation.

Deindividuation is thought to cause:

  • A reduced need for social approval
  • A reduction in rational thinking
  • Reduced inhibitions
  • Poor self monitoring of behaviour

There are various factors that are thought to increase the likelihood that deindividuation occurs, these include:

  • The size of the group
  • Whether the individual is wearing items which makes them difficult to identify
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Deindividuation - A02

Zimbardo (Supporting Research for Deindividuation):

Divided women into two groups, one group were dressed in white lab coats and hoods, addressed as a group rather than individuals and not introduced to one another. The other group wore their usual clothes with name badges on, were given instructions individually and were introduced to each other by name. Participants were all told they were to take part in a conditioning study where they had to administer electric shocks. Found that the women in lab coats and hoods shocked the victims for twice as long than those in ordinary clothes.

Watson (Supporting Research for Deindividuation):

Researched the practices of warriors in 23 different tribes, the warriors in 15 of the 23 tribes changed their appearance prior to entering into battle. In 12 of these 15 tribes warriors were described as being more destructive in the killing and torturing of their victims. Those who did not change their appearance were seen as the least aggressive and destructive tribes.

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Deindividuation - A02

Johnson and Downing (Supporting Research for Deindividuation):

Participants made anonymous by either KKK style hoods or nurses uniforms. Found that participants shocked more when wearing hoods and less when wearing nurses uniforms. Used to support deindividuation as in both conditions participants were deindividuated. However, another reason for the difference in behaviour could be that the participants were just conforming to the behaviour expected by these two groups.

Contradicting Research (Evaluation of Deindividuation):

Has been supoported by lots of research evidence, however some findings do contradict the deindivuation theory, for example, Postmes and Spears carried out a meta-analysis on over 60 studies and did not find deindividuation to have a significant influence on an individuals behaviour.

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Deindividuation - A02

Fails to explain pro-social behaviour (Evaluation of Deindividuation):

Criticised as deindividuation does not always lead to aggression. The behaviour of an individual when deindividuated can also be pro-social, when studies similar to Zimbardo's have been repeated using altruistic acts such as giving money, participants were found to be significantly more pro-social than when they were unidentifiable. This theory is therefore limited in the extent to which it can explain the cause of aggressive behaviour.

Aggressive behaviour is not necessarily random or irrational (Evaluation of Deindividuation):

There have been incidents such as the St. Pauls riots where aggressive behaviour was aimed at specific targets and the members reported being fully aware of the acts they were committing and why. This reduces the validity of the theory as the theory suggests that being part of a large group should lead to irrational, poorly self-monitored behaviour.

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Institutional Aggression - A01

Institutional aggression is defined as aggression that takes place as a result of being in an institutional setting e.g. prison, hospital, psychiatric institution. It can include aggression within a group or between groups e.g. between different prisoners or between groups such as the prisoners and the guards.

Aggression can be caused by factors such as:

  • Addictions
  • Lack of freedom
  • Genes/Hormones
  • Frustration

The Importation Model (Dispositional Factors):

According to Irwin and Cressey aggression occurs in institutional settings because of the pre-exisiting characteristics of the prisoners. This theory implies that aggression is not caused by the situation but the characteristics they bring in with them that affect how they adapt to prison life. Factors that have an important influence on levels of aggression: Education, Employment History and Race.

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Institutional Aggression - A01

The Deprivation Model (Situational Factors):

Situational models propose that aggressive behaviour originates from within the institution itself, not outside of it. There are many different situational factors which may affect an individuals behaviour. For example, in a prison setting situational factors could include:

  • Overcrowding
  • The way the prison is led
  • The level of security
  • The experience of the staff who work in the prison
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Institutional Aggression - A02

Mills (Supporting Research for Dispositional Factors):

Studied 207 male inmates recently admitted to a prison in Canada. Measured the prisoners levels of aggression based on whether they had been reported to commit an act of serious misconduct and they compared these findings with their scores on the Alcohol Dependence Scale. Found that those who has substantial alcohol dependency were more likely to have committed serious misconduct.

Supporting Research (Evaluation of Dispositional Factors):

This model is supported by various studies which have found significant relationships between outside gang membership, race and educational level and the level of institutional aggression shown. Kane and Janus found that non-whites and younger inmates are more likely to be aggressive in prison.

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Institutional Aggression - A02

Accounts for differences between prisoners (Evalution of Dispositional Factors):

Praised for providing a more complex account as to why aggression occurs within institutions. It does not assume that all inmates will be influenced in the same way but instead acknowledges factors such as age, culture and membership to sub cultures. This therefore means that it accounts for individual differences and is likely to be accepted as a plausible explanation for aggression in institutions.

Practical Applications (Evalution of Dispositional Factors):

Has some practical value, for example, if it is an underlying cause such as alcohol dependency that cause the levels of aggression in prison then these issues can be dealt with on an individual basis. However, some psychologists argue that this is not a cost effective or efficient way of dealing with aggression in institutions and that there are factors within the prison itself which can be adjusted to have more impact.

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Institutional Aggression - A02

Sykes (Supporting Research for Situational Factors):

According to Sykes aggression arises via various forms of deprivation that prisoners experience on a day-to-day basis. Based on research he developed the deprivation model. Types of deprivation include: Deprivation of Liberty (loss of civil rights/loss of respect), Deprivation of Autonomy (no longer have the same choices/decisions made for them) and Deprivation of Security (scared of fellow inmates). According to Sykes, aggression occurs as a way for prisoners to vent these frustrations and reduce stress.

Zimbardo (Supporting Research for Situational Factors):

Emphasised that the situation an individual is in can have a powerful influence on their willingness to harm others. In his Stanford Prison Experiment he found that institutional factors such as lack of external constraints and pressure from peers led to aggression towards inmates.

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Institutional Aggression - A02

Research has found conflicting results (Evaluation of Situational Factors):

Some studies have suggested that increasing personal space had no effect on the levels of aggression in psychiatric institutions. Also, other empirical research conducted in prisoners does not seem to support the hypothesis that there is a direct correlation. This therefore lowers the validity of the theory and means that no firm conclusions regarding the cause of institutional aggression can be drawn without further research into the area.

Consistent levels of deprivation (Evaluation of Situational Factors):

This theory doesn't explain why riots suddenly occur from time to time without any situational factors changing, therefore there must be other reasons for institutional aggression e.g. dispositional factors and this may be a more plausible explanation for why aggression in institutional aggression occurs.

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Neural Mechanisms - A01

Brain Structures:

There are various brain structures that have been implicated in aggression, these include the amygdala, hypothalamus and the frontal lobe. One area of the brain thought to play a key role in aggression is the amygdala. Research has found that direct stimulation of the amygdala in hamsters produces aggressive behaviour and that the amygdala is more active when they are under threat of attack.


Neurotransmitters are chemicals that send messages from one area of the brain to another, research suggests that three neurotransmitters in particular are implicated in aggression. These are serotonin, dopamine and noradrenaline.

Serotonin plays a role in emotions such as impulsive aggression during social decision making by keeping aggressive social responses in check.

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Neural Mechanisms - A02

Raine (Supporting Research for Neural Mechanisms):

Compared the brain structure of 39 males and 2 females who had been charged with committing either murder or manslaughter by matching them with 41 normal individuals based on their *** and age. Participants were asked to complete a 32 minute visual attention task whilst their brain activity was monitored using PET scans. Found significant differeces in amygdala activity, murderers brains were more active on the right whilst the control group had an equal amount of activity on either side.

Scientific Validity (Evaluation of Raine):

Praised for having good scientific validity due to the objective scientific measures used e.g. PET scans. This therefore increases the internal validity of the research, providing substantial support for the role of neural mechanisms involved in aggression.

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Neural Mechanisms - A02

Higely (Supporting Research for Neural Mechanisms):

Studied the behaviour of 28 monkeys, observers were asked to rate the monkeys in order from the least to the most aggressive. They were unaware of the levels of each monkeys neurochemicals. They then measured the monkeys levels of serotonin by taking samples from their cerebrospinal fluid. A strong significant negative correlation was found, indicating that the most aggressive monkeys had the lowest levels of serotonin.

Anthropomorphism (Evaluation of Higley):

We should be cautious when using findings from animal research because humans and animals are radically different. However, evolutionary psychologists would argue that the same basic principles apply across all species. Also these research findings have been replicated with humans e.g. Davidson found that lower levels of serotonin in violent criminals compared to non-violent ones. Maybe anthropomorphism is unfair.

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Neural Mechanisms - A02

Lewis (Supporting Research for Neural Mechanisms):

Studied 15 inmates, 13 men and 2 women, all who had been charged with murder and were awaiting execution on death row. The inmates medical reocrds were collected along with family interviews and neurological tests. Lewis found that all of the inmates had experienced severe brain injury, usually during childhood. This, Lewis argues, provides evidence that there is a neurological basis for aggressive, criminal behaviours.

Reductionist (Evaluation of Neural Mechanisms):

Some critics have agrued that it is very difficult to isolate presice areas of the brain and theories that do this tend to oversimplify the complex interconectedness of the brain. Similarly, they argue that neurotransmitters alone cannot account for aggressive behaviour as they are part of a wider network. It is widely accepted that there are actually a lot more processes involved in aggression than just the amygdala or serotonin.

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Neural Mechanisms - A02

Use of Case Studies (Evaluation of Neural Mechanisms):

Research into the neuroanatomical basis of aggression is often conducted on unique cases of individuals who have suffered brain damage. This therefore means that it cannot be concluded that causes of aggression in other members of the population was caused in the same way or that those who experience brain damage will necessarily develop an aggressive temperament.

Real World Applications (Evaluation of Neural Mechanisms):

If aggressive behaviour is a product of imbalanced neurotransmitter levels then it should be possible to treat aggression by administering serotonin increasing drugs. This strategy has been successfully used in aggressive patients suffering from dementia. Therefore the research into neural mechanisms involved in aggression has significant practical applications.

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Hormonal Mechanisms - A01


Testosterone is an androgen which is produced in the males testes and the adrenal cortex. It is thought to influence aggression as it affects certain areas of the brain such as the amygdala that are associated with controlling aggression.

An adult males produces on average 10 times more testosterone than an adult female, therefore some psychologists suggest that this is why males are often described as being more aggressive than females.

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Hormonal Mechanisms - A02

Wagner (Supporting Research for Hormonal Mechanisms):

Found that when a male mouse was castrated, causing a reduction in their levels of testosterone, that their overall levels of aggression decreased. If the mouse was then given testosterone their aggression levels increased again. This would therefore suggest that testosterone is an important hormone implicated in aggressive behaviour.

Anthropomorphism (Evaluation of Wagner):

Criticised because it is argued that humans are radically different to mice, however, evolutionary psychologists would argue that the same basic principles apply across all species and so the findings can be generalised to the human population.

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Hormonal Mechanisms - A02

Olweus (Supporting Research for Hormonal Mechanisms):

Conducted a study into the effect of testosterone using 16 year old males aged 16-25 when testosterone levels in males are at their highest. He measured the boys levels of aggression using questionnaires and their testosterone levels using blood samples. Found a positive correlation between reported physical and verbal aggression and tesosterone levels. Suggests that the higher an individuals level of testosterone, the higher their level of aggression.

Dabbs (Supporting Research for Hormonal Mechanisms):

Studied 692 male inmates at a prison in the USA. Testosterone levels were measured via saliva samples and the inmates behaviour was coded from prison records. Found that those who had been imprisoned for committing a violent crime were more likely to have higher levels of testosterone whilst those who were imprisoned for crimes such as theft or drugs tended to have the lowest levels. The prisoners who had the highest levels of testosterone were also more likely to have violated the prison rules regarding confrontational behaviour.

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Hormonal Mechanisms - A02

Deterministic (Evaluation of Hormonal Mechanisms):

Because it states that aggressive acts are fully caused by biological factors. In particular, hormones, and it fails to acknowledge that free will may also be a vital factor in aggression which suggests that we have no control over our own actions. This is controversial because in court cases, criminals can use this arguement to reduce their sentences and to avoid responsibility of a crime. It is also extremely difficult to prove that a persons aggression is completely determined by their hormones.

Correlational (Evaluation of Hormonal Mechanisms):

A majority of research into testosterone is correlational which means that no cause and effect can be established. For example, we cannot be sure whether testerone causes aggression or aggression causes high levels of testosterone because there could be other factors which influence aggression, such as the environment. Not possible to make firm cause and effect conclusions.

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Hormonal Mechanisms - A02

Oversimplified (Evaluation of Hormonal Mechanisms):

Criticised for oversimplifying the complex emotional response of aggression. They do not take into account any other factors that may cause an individual to behave in an aggresive way, such as their environment or their thought processes. Many experts now acknowledge that aggressive behaviour is actually a complex interaction between both biological and environmental factors.

Scientific Validity (Evaluation of Hormonal Mechanisms):

High in scientific validity as the research has been conducted using well established scientific measures such as PET scans. This increases the internal validity of the research. Supporters of the biological approach argue that as there is such a vast quantity of scientific research into this area that it cannot be denied that human aggression is at least partly caused by biological factors.

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Genetic Factors - A01

Absolute Genetic Explanation - Argues that certain individuals inherit a maladaptive gene or combination of genes which causes aggression. One example of a genetic explanation is thought to be the MAOA explanation.

The MAOA gene on the X chromosome is implicated in agression. The MAOA gene produces an enzyme which breaks down excess levels of neurotransmitters including serotonin, dopamine and noradrenaline. Several studies have found that people and non-human animals with an underactive version of the MAOA gene are associated with high levels of aggression.

Genetic Predisposition Explanation - Argues that certain individuals inherit maladaptive genes which increase the likelihood of developing aggressive behaviours, but aggression will only develop when interacting with other factors.

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Genetic Factors - A02

Brunner (Supporting Research for the Absolute Genetic Explanation):

Studied a Dutch family where the males had a mutant form of the MAOA gene. This mutation resulted in complete absence of the MAOA enzyme. When angry, frustrated or fearful they reacted aggressively and many had been involved in extreme aggression such as attempted ****, arson and impulsive aggression.

Tryon (Supporting Research for the Absolute Genetic Explanation):

Conducted an experiment into the genetic basis of aggression by using selective breeding in rats. He observed the behaviour of a group of rats and divided them into two groups to breed, an aggressive and a docile group. Tryon studied the rats behaviour over 26 generations and found that the offspring of the aggressive rats showed aggresive behaviour and the offspring of the docile rats demonstrated docile behaviour.

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Genetic Factors - A02

Anthropomorphism (Evaluation of Tryon):

Animals, such as the rats in Tryon's research, have a fast breeding cycle and so the intergenerational effects of specific genes can be seen much quicker than in humans. Many people argue that humans are much more complex species and that aggression is often triggered by complex social interactions not experienced by animals so it has to be questioned whether the findings of this research can be generalised to the human population. However, some psychologists would argue that basic behaviours such as aggression are caused by the same instinctive drives and so this research can be representative of the human population.

Berkowitz (Supporting Research for the Genetic Predisposition Explanation):

Studied MZ twins, found that for MZ twins there is around a 75% concordance rate for aggression compaed to DZ twins who have a concordance rate of around 24%. These findings would suggest that the more genetic material two individuals share the more similar their levels of aggression are going to be, however as the concordance rate is not 100% it indicates a genetic predisposition not an absolute explanation.

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Genetic Factors - A02

Mednick (Supporting Research for the Genetic Predisposition Explanation):

Studied 14,000 adoptees, they found that out of all the criminals 14% had neither adoptive or biological parents who were criminals. 15% had adoptive but not biological criminal parents. The figure rose to 20% if their biological parents were criminals and if both sets of parents had criminal backgrounds the figure was 25%, These findings suggest that genetics must play an important role in determining aggressive behaviour as children who did not grow up with their biological parents were still more likely to be criminals than those who grew up with adoptive parents who were criminals.

Reductionist (Evaluation of the Absolute Genetic Explanation):

Absolute genetic explanations have been criticised for oversimplifying the cause of aggression, this is because they reduce the complex behaviour that is human aggression down to one gene e.g. MAOA. Many pschologists would argue that there is strong evidence for aggression being caused by an interaction of both external and internal factors and to suggest it is only caused by one gene is reductionist.

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Genetic Factors - A02

Extreme Genetic Determinism (Evaluation of Absolute Genetic Explanation):

Criticised for determinism because it ignores the role of free will in aggression, therefore suggesting we have no control over our actions. This is controversial because criminals could use this as a defence in court in order to try and reduce their sentences and to avoid the responsibility of a crime. It is also extremely difficult to prove that a persons aggression is completely determined by their genes.

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Evolutionary (Infidelity + Jealousy) - A01

Aggression is an adaptive response, serves an important function for survival and increases reproductive success. Jealousy is defined as an 'emotional state that is aroused by a perceived threat to a relationship or position'. Male aggression = physical. Female aggression = verbal.

Infidelity can pose a threat to both an individuals reproductive success and sometimes their survival too. In order to reduce the jealousy caused by the threat of infidelity individuals may become aggressive towards members of the same or opposite ***.

Aggression can be intra-***ual (against members of the same ***) or inter-***ual (against members of the opposite ***). Regardless of whether they are faithful or not women can always be certain that a child is theirs however for men this is not true.

Male to Male = Reduce competition for mates

Male to Female = Prevent infidelity

Female to Female = Jealous of younger, more attractive females

Female to Male = Emotional infidelity

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Evolutionary (Infidelity + Jealousy) - A02

Wilson (Supporting Research for Infidelity + Jealousy):

Found that women who described their husband on a questionnaire as being jealous and not wanting them to talk to other men, reported being twice as likely to have experienced serious violence from their partners, with 56% reporting being scared for their life and 72% requiring hospital treatment. It could therefore be concluded from this study that there is a correlation between jealousy and aggression and that this jealousy, seemingly caused by the threat of infidelity, is a product of an adaptive response.

Kaighobadi (Supporting Research for Infidelity + Jealousy):

Studied 165 males who were all in secure relationships. Participants were asked to complete questionnaires measuring how often they accused their partners of infidelity, how often they used retention strategies and how frequently they used acts of violence. Found that as the number of accusations increased so did the number of retention strategies and the frequency of violent acts. Therefore this study indicates that aggression occurs as a reaction to the feelings of jealousy caused by the threat of infidelity which supports the evolutionary explanation.

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Evolutionary (Infidelity + Jealousy) - A02

Shackleford (Supporting Research for Infidelity + Jealousy):

Conducted research using 1,461 males and 560 females all in committed, heterosexual relationships. The males answered questions about the techniques they used to prevent their wives from being unfaithful and the frequency they performed violent acts. Women were also asked about their partners behaviour. Shackleford found that there was a positive correlation between 'direct guarding' and the frequency of violent acts. Used jealousy as a preventative method.

Flawed Methodology (Evaluation of Shackleford):

Criticised for flawed methodology due to the use of questionnaires, these create particular issues such as social desirability bias meaning a person changes their views/beliefs in order to make them seem more socially accepted. This method of collecting data may also not be effective in this situation as it is about violence against a spouse. Therefore, lowers the internal validity meaning that further research needs to be conducted before firm conclusions can be made.

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Evolutionary (Infidelity + Jealousy) - A02

Oversimplified (Evaluation of Infidelity + Jealousy):

It is important to recognise that jealousy does not always lead to aggressive behaviour, psychologists have argued that human relationships are much more complex than this theory proposes and that other factors should be taken into consideration. However, not as reductionist as the biological explanations of aggression.

Deterministic (Evaluation of Infidelity + Jealousy):

This theory explains aggression as being an inevitable result of survival instincts, however critics argue that individuals do have control over their behaviour and that people must take responsibility for their actions. (Reduces free will) This raises concerns as it takes the blame away from the individual committing the aggressive act and could potentially be used as a defence in court. This theory is therefore seen as deterministic.

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Evolutionary (Infidelity + Jealousy) - A02

Gender Bias (Evaluation of Infidelity + Jealousy):

More specifically, alpha bias as it exagerates the differences in aggression between males and females. Therefore, it may be more plausible to explain aggression by culture and socialisation rather than by gender as not all males are stereotypically aggressive and not all females are stereotypically caring and nurturing.

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Evolutionary (Group Displays) - A01

Aggression is an adaptive response, humans have developed unconscious psychological mechanisms in order to increase their survival chances and reproductive success.

Forming alliances with others has considerable advantages in terms of protection, ensuring vital resources e.g. food and territory. Some psychologists argue that those who display the most aggression will also have more reproductive success. In creating these alliances in-group and out-group are established.

It has also been suggested that group displays of aggression are often ritualistic. Displays of behaviour are not only performed to strengthen the feeling of in-group memebership but also to intimidate the enemy. The type of aggressive behaviour observed at sporting events is described as ritualistic as it follows a certain pattern and is symbolic. It often involves high levels of verbal abuse but no physical violence.

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Evolutionary (Group Displays) - A02

Evans and Rowe (Supporting Research for Group Displays):

Analysed police interviews, post-match reports and official reports from 40 football matches played in Europe involving either English clubs or the English national team. Found a much higher level of aggressive behaviour occured when the English national team played another national team. Evan and Rowe proposed that this was caused by the English team being less ethnically diverse and the supporters being more xenophobic.

Supports Because...

As it suggests that being cautious of, and aggressive towards another team can be beneficial for survival. It can be argued that xenophobia is favoured by natural selection as it allowed our ancestors to avoid harm by avoiding potential threat and this would have increased their reproductive success.

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Evolutionary (Group Displays) - A02

Foldesi (Supporting Research for Group Displays):

Provides further support for xenophobia in Hungarian football crowds. He found that racist chants and banners led to an increase in spectator violence. The xenophobic abuse was often aimed at Russians, former Yugoslavians and Romanians. The evolutionary approach would argue that this behaviour is adaptive as the aggression shown by the groups of football fans is aimed at other groups who pose a threat to resources e.g. territory.

Clark (Contradicting Research for Group Displays):

Conducted research in Brazil and found evidence which contradicted the power-threat hypothesis, in Sao-Paulo the percentage of Afro-Brazilians was negatively correlated with lynch mob incidents, Afro-Brazilians posed no threat either economically or politically yet they were often the targets of lynch mob attacks. This therefore criticises that evolutionary theory that lynch mobs occur due to threats to other groups' survival.

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Evolutionary (Group Displays) - A02

Lack of Scientific Validity (Evaluation of Group Displays):

Not based on scientific evidence, this theory is based on the idea that aggressive behaviours have been developed for survival and passed on through generations and so it cannot be objectively tested or measure. This therefore means that it also lacks predictive validity as it cannot be accurately predictive which groups will become aggressive or when.

Practical Applications (Evaluation of Group Displays):

Could be beneficial to society in terms of reducing aggression at sporting events. If physically aggressive rituals at sports events such as aggressive chanting were curtailed then according to Marsh the levels of physical violence would increase and individuals may end up causing physical injury to themselves and/or others.

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Evolutionary (Group Displays) - A02

Counter-Productive (Evaluation of Group Displays):

Dunning argues that sports violence is not harmless, actually there have been many cases where the verbal aggression turns physical and results in injury and even death. This therefore criticises the evolutionary explanation of aggression as it suggests that aggression at sporting events actually threatens survival chances, not increases them as the evolutionary theory predicts.

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this is amazing


Thank you so much


this is bullshit you mother ******


This is really helpful, thankyou so much! 


what do all the **** mean in the notes?

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