Social cognition
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SOCIAL COGNITION. How we process information about other people and draw conclusions about them. ATTRIBUTION. Attibution = giving reasons for why things happen Foundations of attribution theories :

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SOCIAL COGNITION

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Social cognition

SOCIAL COGNITION

Howweprocessinformationaboutotherpeople and drawconclusionsaboutthem


Attribution

ATTRIBUTION

  • Attibution = givingreasons for whythingshappen

  • Foundations of attributiontheories:

    Heider 1944: need to makesense of the social world need to developideas and theoriesabout the causesunderlyingbehaviour

    - causesarelyingeitherwithin the person (adispositionalattribution) orwithin the situation (a situationalattribution)


Diffefent attribution theories

DIFFEFENT ATTRIBUTION THEORIES

  • Based on Heider’sview

  • Notalternativesbutdifferentinsights to the attributionprocess

  • Correspondentinferencetheory

  • Jones and David 1965

  • Attributionprocess:

    Decidingwhether action is deliberateornot Ifyes, matching of a behaviourwith a personalcharacteristic: correspondentinference


Social cognition

Wepreferstablecauses

 Weneed to judgewhether an action is intentional

 Wemakedistinctionbetweendispositional and situationalattributions

  • Threemajorfactorsaffectingwhether a dispositionalattribution is made

    • Principle of non-commoneffects

    • Personalism

    • Hedonicrelevance


Social cognition

  • According to Jones and Davis wehavetendencyto

    • assumethatactionsaredeliberate

    • Makedispositionalattributions

  • Evaluation:

    • Canonlybeapplied to actionsinterpreted as deliberate

    • Evidenceagainstthisview:

      • Guimond and Palmer 1990 (A-Level p.183)


Social cognition

2) Kelley’scovariationmodel 1967;1973

Whenmakingjudgement on whethercauses for someone’sbehaviouraredispositional of situationalwe look for threekinds of causalinformation:

a) consensus: the extent to whichotherpeoplebehave the sameway

b) distinctiveness: the extent to whichonebehaves the sameway in comparablesituations

c) consistency: the extent to whichone’sbehaviour is stableovertime


Social cognition

  • Lowconsensus + lowdistinctiveness + highconsistency =>dispositionalattribution

  • Anyothercombination => situationalattribution

  • Evaluation of the theory:

    • Studysupporting the model:

      • McArthur 1972 (p.185)

    • Problems:

      • Peopledon’tseem to useallthreesources of informationequally (Major 1980)

      • Peoplemayuseotherkinds of informationwhenmakingattributions (Garland et al.1975)

      • Notthatmucheffort is alwaysput to attribution


Social cognition

  • Kelleydevelopedhismodel (1972): Whenthereisn’tinformationaboutconcensus, distinctiveness and consistencyweusecausalschemata = general conceptions a person hasabouthowcertainkinds of causesinteract to produce a specifickind of effect

  • Differentcausalschemata:

    • Multiplesufficientcauses

    • Discountingprinciple(whenhaving a reason to believethatoneexplanation is morelikely)  tendency to situationalattribution

    • Whenbehaviour is ’in role’ wetend to makesituationalattributions

    • Multiplenecessarycauses


Syllabus the learning outcome related to the theories of attribution

Syllabus: THE LEARNING OUTCOME RELATED TO THE THEORIES OF ATTRIBUTION:

Describe the role of situational and dispositionalfactors in explainingbehaviour

“Describe: Give a detailed account.”

WRITE AN ESSAY ABOUT THIS TOPIC FOR NEXT LESSON!


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