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Psy 400 - Social Psychology

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Social Psychology

Tashonia Walls

PSY 400


Claire Gropman

Social Psychology

According to Myers, people-watching is a universal hobby. As we observe people, we form ideas about how human beings think about, influence, and relate to one another. Ask the question have you ever watch people interacting and thinks to yourself, what made them respond the way they did? The central focus of this paper will discuss social Psychology and provide more insight about the discipline. As a Psychology student this information serves as a guide to gain better knowledge about the subject and will be pertinent to the understand people and how they function on a social level. First, will describe and define social psychology, and the importance of the study second, I will examine how this branch of psychology differs from other disciplines and last I will explain the role of research in Social Psychology.

To begin with Social psychology focuses on how people are affected by their social surroundings. Social Psychology is defined as "branch of psychology that concentrates on any and all aspects of human behavior that involve persons and their relationships with other persons, groups, social institutions and society as a whole." Social psychology involves a variety of approaches, partly reflecting its multidisciplinary location (2006). This discipline is concerned with how individuals respond to or from experiences in social settings or groups. It is believed that because people are social beings, other can people have strong influences over a individual, and this can affect the way attitudes, behaviors and actions are displayed. For example when people spend a lot of time together they would start to pick up some of the same behaviors or actions. There two theories that dominate social psychology; trait theories and field theory. Trait theories assert that social conditions shape individuals, giving them distinct personalities or attitudes that become fixed and thus render behavior consistent across many very different situations. When human behavior was found to be significantly inconsistent, and attitudes refused to stabilize in study after study, trait theories lost ground. Field theory asserts that the proper unit of analysis is the social system, but beyond this its advice has not been clear its influence has faded as its terminology has been replaced by fresher metaphors (2001).

Next will be the focus on how this branch of Social psychology differs from other disciplines. It is important to distinguish the two disciplines (which two?). They seem to be focused on the same behaviors because of the nay similarities between them but they differ because sociologists are concerned with social influences and behaviors at a mire broader level that Social Psychology. The psychologist who study social psychology are more concerned with focusing on situations that cause the behaviors to change and instead focus on situational variables that affect social behavior. Social psychology has close relationships with other disciplines such as personality psychology, organizational psychology, but it differs because it mainly focuses on human behaviors as related to social aspects. Social psychology is in different from personality psychology because personality Psychology studies character patterns that consist of thoughts, feelings and behaviors that make up the unique qualities of a person. Social Psychology focuses more on situations that influences the behaviors which are displayed by the person. For example, a person that is organized a another person would be influenced by the behavior and what they see and emulate this behavior because they see the affects it has on the other person. Social psychology holds a different view from organizational psychology because the branch of study focuses on behaviors within organizations "for example" Organizational psychology uses methods of research



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