Studies of Unit 1 Psychology

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  • Created by: jessmitch
  • Created on: 01-06-13 23:27

Reducing Prejudice (Elliot)

Aim - to teach her class what it felt like to be victims of discrimination.

Method - Elliot told her class the following: 

  • blue eyed children are smarter than brown eyed children
  • blue eyed children are the best people in the world
  • brown eyed children cannot play with blue eyed children
  • brown eyed children cannot use the water fountain

Results - the children reacted quickly to what they had been told and children that had been best friends the day before were now fighting in the playground. The blue eyed children were delighted and became arrogant, whereas the brown eyed children became angry and saddened. The following day, Elliot reversed the experiment and the brown eyed children behaved in the same manner the blue eyed children had the previous day.

Conclusion - Elliot believed that, by getting the children to experience what it felt like to be victims of prejudice and discrimination first, these children would grow up to be more tolerant towards others.

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Multi-Store Explaination of Memory (Murdock)

Aim - to provide evidence to support the mulit-store explaination of memory.

Method - participants had to learn list of words presented one at a time, for two seconds per word, and then recall the words in any order.

Results - the words at the end of the list were recalled first (known as the recency effect). Words from the beginning of the list were also recalled quite well (known as primacy effect), but the middle words were not recalled very well.

Conclusion - Murdock concluded that this provides evidence for seperate short-term and long-term stores. Murdock claimed that the recency effect is evidence that the last few words were still in the short-term store. The primacy effect is evidence that the first few words flowed into the long-term store.

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Creating Prejudice (Sherif)

Aim - to find out if prejudice develops when groups are in competition.

Method - an American summer camp was organised for 22 boys. The boys were randomly split into two teams. The two teams did not know about eachother and were kept apart. The boys were given time to settle into camp and form a group identity. After a while, the two teams discovered eachother and camp staff introduced a series of competitons with the prize for the winning team being a silver cup.

Results - quicky, the teams began name-calling the other team and tried to attack eachother very quickly.

Conclusion - Competiton is a cause of prejudice.

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Reconstructive Memory (Bartlett)

Aim -  to see if people, when given something unfamiliar to remember, would alter the information.

Method - participants were told an unfamiliar Native American legend 'The War of the Ghosts'. Later they were asked to the recall the story as accurately as possible. The retelling was repeated over several weeks.

Results - Bartlett discovered that his participants found it difficult to remember parts of the story concerned with spirits and changed other parts around so the story made more sense to them. Each time they retold the story they changed it some more.

Conclusion - Bartlett concluded that our memory is influenced by our own beliefs.

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Effect of Paralinguistics (Davitz & Davitz)

Aim - to see the effect of paralinguistics on assesment of emotion.

Method - participants were asked to listen to tape recordings of different emotions and assess them from the paralinguistic cues; tone of voice, emphaisis and intonation. 

Results - there was a high level of accuracy in recognising these emotions; fear, anger, disgust, amusement. 

Conclusion - paralinguistics are important for judging emotion.

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