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University Degree: Social Psychology

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  1. When people form long queues to obtain goods or withdraw money following rumours of possible future scarcity, observers often claim that these people are behaving irrationally Are they behaving irrationally?

    reported a case of "grown men pushing kids out of the way" in order to get bottles of water. This kind of behaviour occurs due to a breakdown of co-operation and the emergence of competition. This essay will discuss the extent to which people who form long queues to obtain goods or withdraw money following rumours of possible scarcity are behaving irrationally with emphasis upon co-operation and competition as explanations for the behaviour. Pfeffer and Moore (1980) claimed that scarcity of resources increases conflict which results in a decline in the use of co-operation (Cited in Mckinley, et al.

    • Word count: 1348
  2. A Discursive Analysis of extracts regarding a male(TM)s perception of body image

    literally like a skeleton 20 (2.0) Cli draws attention away from the idea of body perception (line 1) by stated that the face is what is most "attractive" in a girl which suggests that a woman's body size is not the only important factor in the perceptive attractiveness of a female. Cli's speech is overlapped by Jef (line 3) who utters "m:::m" which appears to suggest that he is agreeing with Cli's view but then uses the discourse marker "but" (line 5)

    • Word count: 2523
  3. In what ways have the traditional assumptions and approaches of scientific psychology been questioned, and what is replacing these in current practice?

    Objectivity in this sense is encapsulated in Comte's philosophy of positivism (Bem & de Jong, 1997). Comte suggested that in order for humankind to arrive at 'positive truths' about the world (truths that are distinct from theological or metaphysical truths; pseudoscience), scientific exploration, the objective collection of data and the judgement of facts would be necessary. Positivism argued that all sciences should depend upon the same methods for discovering positive truths about the world and asserted that there should be no significant differences between sciences such as physics, biology, chemistry and psychology.

    • Word count: 2580
  4. Critically review studies that have been published in the last 15 years, where impulsivity has been considered a factor in the explanation of criminal behaviour.

    Another definition by Feldman (1996) describes impulsivity as "the tendency to act with less forethought than other individuals of equal ability and knowledge". This is a variation of the first definition and is a little more complex. Feldman is obviously trying to define impulsivity in a negative way, indicating that decisions made on impulse are rash; however this is not necessarily always true. In some situations people can act on impulse with the yield of positive results or at least results that are not of major detriment .E.g.

    • Word count: 2352
  5. Tony Montana, a case study of the effectiveness of Sigmund Freud(TM)s Psychoanalytic approach to personality(TM)

    He himself wanted to become famous and believed researching medicine could help him to achieve this. However Freud could not afford to continue in research so established a private practice as a clinical neurologist. From this he realised he could make great discoveries and perhaps fame through his revolutionary ideas on human personality. All subsequent theories of personality use Freud as a reference point to compare and contrast their own such theories (Liebert & Langenbach 2007). To understand Freud's theory of personality we must start by looking at how he divides personality into three categories; the conscious, the preconscious, and the unconscious.

    • Word count: 2295
  6. Why do different approaches in social psychology use different methods to study social phenomena?

    It answers casual questions, for example 'is variable X a cause of variable Y?' (Aronson et al., 2005, pp.31) However, McGhee (2001, pp.120) claims that experimental social psychology assumes that social behaviour is objectively measurable, is caused by identifiable factors and that general principles or laws can be specified which describe the link between these factors and the social behaviour in question. Experimentation is a powerful method to study social phenomena because it allows us to identify the causes of events and thus gain control.

    • Word count: 1659
  7. The relationship between the amount of exercise individuals take and the stress they experience

    A similar study was conducted in this field by Morse and Walker (1994). The study took a group of 46 undergraduate students and divided them into two groups: an exercising group and a non-exercising group. They then put the exercising group through 6 weeks of exercise accredited by ASCM. After this period both groups were given The General Symptom Index questionnaire to complete. Their results stated that after exercise intervention stress symptoms were reduced and the subjects that didn't exercise had raised stress symptoms.

    • Word count: 1697
  8. Psychology of Criminal Conduct

    Research into age as an influential factor on sentence severity has been scarce and what little research that has been done, has focused on the age of the juror as a contributing factor. Hepburn (1980) and Sealy (1981) 1 both found that the age of jurors strongly correlated with their verdicts and, older jurors were more likely to render a guilty verdict than younger ones. Sealy (1981), in particular, found that jurors age 25 and under were more likely to render a not guilty verdict than jurors over age 41 and over.

    • Word count: 2764
  9. What is the significance of research on equivocation for our understanding of political communication?

    Bavelas et al (1990) argue that equivocation is not a characteristic of a particular type of personality, but of a particular type of discourse, and that the pressures of a political interview lend themselves to these conflicts (Bull, 1998). Bull and Mayer's 1993 microanalysis of eight interviews with Margaret Thatcher and eight with Neil Kinnock showed the two politicians to have directly answered only 41 and 44 per cent of questions posed, respectively. This supported Harris' (1991) earlier research, in which the same politicians answered 39 per cent of the time, suggesting that certainly in terms of interviews with these politicians, equivocation is prevalent.

    • Word count: 1992
  10. Critical review of a report titled "The incidence of workplace bullying"

    A two part self report questionnaire was used to gather data speedily and in quantity from a large sample of approximately 1100 respondents. The sample population was drawn from part-time students at Stafford University over a three week period. Aspects of the methodology are recognized as problematic by the research team. Definition of bullying is difficult because there is no legislation or legal terms for guidance, plus feeling bullied is a subjective and personal experience. s****l harassment does have legal definition and has parallels with bullying so the team decided to use these as a starting point, although it is not made clear in the report how this process was drawn out to produce definitions.

    • Word count: 1705
  11. psychology methods in staff recruitment

    This can result in poor candidate selection, as the criteria applied may not reflect the scope of the job. There are a wide variety of selection criteria available to employers today. The method used is dictated as much by tradition and personal preference, as the reliability and validity of the technique. The validity refers to the extent to which the selection method provides a prediction of future job performance. Robertson & Smith (2001) report work sample tests as the single predictor of performance with validity 0.54, closely followed by cognitive ability and structured interview.

    • Word count: 2269
  12. Evaluation of qualitiative paper - phenomenology

    believed that experiences perceived through human consciousness has value and should be scientifically studied. The structure of these experiences, he called "intentionality of consciousness", a key concept in phenomenology suggests Smith (2003). The study by Riemem (1986), investigates the 'caring interaction' between a nurse and patient. Whilst appraising this particular paper, structure, credibility, strengths and weaknesses will all be taken into consideration, and conveyed through other literature. The researcher begins the study with a literature review of both the philosophical ideas behind the study, and the phenomenolgical approach. The design involves studying 10 randomly selected non-hospitalised adults, associated with a university in southwestern United States, who had prior interactions with a registered nurse, and were able to communicate their feelings regarding these interactions.

    • Word count: 1892
  13. When and why do we rely on stereotypes?

    Without the option to easily infer information otherwise unavailable so quickly, it would be impossible for anyone to be able to interpret the sheer diversity of people and objects surrounding us. Unfortunately, this causes us to go past the realms of objectivity, possibly making inaccurate judgements based on a very minor superficial factor. The stereotyping process is greatly affected by the person's inward motivation (Hilton and Von Hippel, 1996) as they will strive to alleviate social awkwardness caused by uncertainty about people whom the subject has never met, thus relying on stereotypes to do so.

    • Word count: 2913
  14. Classic studies in psychology merely tell us what we already know. Discuss

    However, contrary to this claim, the results this experiment generated surpassed even Milgram's expectations. Originally, rather than aiming to produce a theory of obedience, his plans were to test the idea that German people were different from others and would be much more likely to follow commands from an authority figure as this was the argument commonly used to explain how normal German people could have carried out the atrocities of the n**i's in World War II. The experiment was conducted in America at first, and Milgram had plans to repeat it in Germany, but as the results showed phenomenally high levels of obedience in American people he no longer saw this comparison as necessary.

    • Word count: 2058
  15. Research report on friendship

    Sharabany (1994) structured the concept of 'close friendship' into the following eight dimensions: Frankness and Spontaneity; Sensitivity and Knowing; Attachment; Exclusiveness; Giving and Sharing; Imposition; Common Activities; Trust and Loyalty. Selman and Jaquette (1977, cited in Strayer & Roberts, 2004) suggested a five stage model of adolescents' and adults' understanding of friendship that linked to stages of perspective-taking abilities. In late adolescence and early adulthood an autonomous interdependency characterized the friendship in which friendships were regarded, still important but the need for other relationships was accepted.

    • Word count: 6369
  16. compare and contrast minority and majority influence

    Minority influences tends to change private views in members of society and are essential for social change. This essay will be exploring the different processes involved in majority and minority influences by assessing a number of social psychologists views and experimental evidence. Moscivici (1980, cited in Hogg &Vaughan, 2005) argued that majority and minority influences work in different ways. Majority influence results in compliance which is when one publicly conforms to majority view but privately believe something else. Deutsch and Gerard (1955, as cited in Kelvin, 1969) proposed two types of influence which leads to public conformity to majority view, Informational influence and normative influence.

    • Word count: 1642
  17. The Study of Gender-Based Stereotypes and Their Potential Impact to the Organization

    In Reed's view, feminists are pointed to the inequality inherent in these structures which re-created gender at the work place and called for radical measures to alter existing structures to alleviate the subordination of women. Others sought to identify the sources of change within existing management frameworks that policy-makers could work on to address the issues for the optimal use of human resources. For instance, Kanter's (1977) pioneering study on women in a male-dominated organization examined how women's mobility within the organization could be facilitated by policies which addressed their lack of negotiating power via structures of opportunity, power and numerical composition.

    • Word count: 2712
  18. This house believes that, without exception, euthanasia

    There are 2 types of voluntary euthanasia; active and passive. Voluntary active euthanasia causes the most debate out of all areas of euthanasia. It is when "mercy killing" is involved. This is when someone asks for immediate death. Being put to death through an injection is an example of this. Voluntary passive euthanasia is the type that many Christians allow. It means not taking prolonged or vigorous action to preserve life. Involuntary euthanasia is when the decision of death is made by someone other than the patient because the patient cannot or would not make the decision themselves.

    • Word count: 1599
  19. In an intergroup context, examine the role of social stereotypes in prejudice and discrimination.

    (Cleveland, Stockdale, & Murphy, 2000) For example, people X meet a friend which is a BBC (British Born Chinese), but this BBC was actually a thief and has been stealing so many things from X and keeps on lying. People X may then concluded that all BBC are thieves and are bad friends. However, stereotypes are not necessary a bad attitude, it can be positive as well. Taking the same example, if people X meet a BBC friend who is very friendly, warm and kind, there is a higher chance that people X will rate all BBC are nice people and worth to be friend with.

    • Word count: 1745
  20. Free essay

    The psychology of aggression: examining the biological, learning, emotional, and environmental factors that combine in various ways to produce aggression in various situations.

    There is ancient evidence of aggression, such as the Assyrian king Ashurbanipal, who delighted in violence. Ruston & Others did research in 1986 that shows that there is a genetic basis in aggression. They took aggressive animals and timid animals, and bred like with like and produced vicious and docile strains of animals. This shows that genes play an important part in producing aggression. There are also neurobiological factors involved in aggression. Rather than an instinct for aggression, some psychologists believe what may have evolved is an aggressive capacity wired into the human neuromuscular system. For example, in one study, children who were born blind and deaf still displayed aggressive behaviour, such as foot stamping, teeth clenching, and fist making, even though they have never been exposed to aggression (Eibl-Eibesfeldt, 1977).

    • Word count: 1170
  21. Outline and evaluate two psychological theories of aggression

    REINFORCEMENT; indirect reinforcement and identification lead to imitation." The SLT was an expansion on The Learning Theory, (which suggested that new behaviours were learned through direct reinforcement). Direct reinforcement involves classical & operant conditioning. The Social Learning Theory differs to this 'Traditional' theory as it includes INDIRECT Reinforcement as well as direct reinforcement. Indirect Reinforcement includes vicarious reinforcement, which occurs when another person is observed to be rewarded for certain actions. Therefore the observer may imitate these behaviours in order to obtain the same reward i.e.

    • Word count: 1882
  22. juvenile conflict with law

    One is purely legalistic that aims at restricting the quantification of the problem by putting specific qualification and does not draw a distinction between Juvenile Delinquency and Juvenile Crime. Other is the social approach that aims at conducting a symptom and diagnostic study and believes in the axiom of "catch them young" to prevent the Juveniles from actually committing a crime. It is being increasing recognised that the children are the most vulnerable group in any population and need special care and protection.

    • Word count: 13346
  23. Use the literature on Social Facilitation to discuss the extent to which task performance may be influenced by the presence of an audience (as compared to performing the same task when alone).

    In the late nineteenth century Norman Triplett occupied his self by the effects of other people on individual performance. He realised that bicycle racer's time were slower when they raced on their own rather than the cyclists who were racing against each other. This experiment showed that doing activities in groups improve speed and accuracy in simple motor tasks and it was the earliest attempt to understand social facilitation and how the mere presence of other participants can influence the behaviour of the individual. Floyd Allport (1920), asked participants to write down as many associations as they could think of for words on a blank piece of paper.

    • Word count: 1083
  24. Theories of Aggression

    In the non-aggressive condition the model played with the toys. In the aggressive condition the model repeatedly hit the doll with the mallet, and was verbally aggressive towards the doll. The children were then taken into a room with a Bobo doll and a mallet, and they too began hitting the doll and used many of the same verbal terms as the model used. The children who were with the non-aggressive model did not hit the Bobo doll, and showed no aggression. This shows strong evidence that children are likely to copy behaviour which they would unlikely produce otherwise.

    • Word count: 796
  25. symbolic interactionism and deviance

    Given the importance of the impact of deviance on society, many approaches have been used to attempt to understand why people engage in deviant behaviour. Symbolic interactionists argue that deviance is "relative". That is, what might be considered in one group (or society) might not be in another. There are a number of different explanations of deviance from each of the different theoretical perspectives in sociology. Differential association theory is a symbolic interactionist perspective developed by Edwin H. Sutherland. The principal of different association states that a person becomes a deviant because of an "excess" of definitions in favour of violation of the law over definitions unfavourable to violation of the law.

    • Word count: 1199

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