Social SC

What is social cognition?

  • social psychology concerned with how our thoughts, feelings and behaviours influence and are influenced by others
  • 'thinking' can occur rapidly, automatically and without awareness
  • cognition allows us to aquire, organise and use info, social cognition is how social info is aquired, organised and used


  • by categorising stimuli on salient features, we an later infer infom about stimuli without processing full data
  • categories are instances grouped together as they share a family resemblance
  • but no specific set of attributes that all stimuli must be categorised
  • categories hierarchical, from broad to specific


  • cognitive representation of a category, but members of a category differ
  • more accurate definition of category is a fuzzy set, varying instances of examples/stimuli that are centred on a prototype


  • people may represent categories with a specific instance they encounter
  • Brewer (1988) as we beome more familiar wth categories we shift from representing with prototypes to exemplars
  • Judd


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