BEHAVIORAL LEARNING THEORY Response-Stimulus-Response model of learning (R-S-R) Behavior produces an environmental effect which affects the likelihood of similar behavior in the future. *Behaviors are shaped by the consequences they produce.
Positive Reinforcement – When stimulus events have the effect of increasing the probability that a response will occur again. Negative Reinforcement – Removing a stimulus, usually an aversive one, when this removal makes a specified response more likely to occur. Punishment – Presentation of a stimulus that makes a specified response LESS likely. The bottom line is: We repeat behaviors which have, in the past, produced reinforcement, and we shy away from behaviors which have produced punishment.
Other Important Terms: Extinction – A decrease in strength of a conditioned response when it is no longer reinforced. Shaping – Reinforcing successive approximations to some final response.
Social Learning Theory A person learns through conditioning, but also by vicarious reinforcement (i.e., observers increase behavior for which they have seen others reinforced). The heart of this approach says that we learn through observation/imitation. This is a process of: Acquisition Retention Motor Reproduction Motivation http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IK4NPc7HCnY
SOCIAL EXCHANGE THEORY Individuals are viewed as trying to maximize rewards and minimize costs. Outcomes = Rewards – Costs (Rewards include anything positive, desirable. Costs include anything negative, undesirable.)
STRUCTURAL ROLE THEORY One of the most reliable sociological findings is that people’s attitudes and behaviors vary according to the social position they occupy in the social structure. Structural Role Theory would say that people are like actors following a script (role consensus is assumed). Consider the term, role conflict. In essence, this can occur when a person experiences two of his/her roles “colliding”.
The Fundamental Attribution Error The tendency to discount the role of the situation in affecting a person’s behavior and to over-estimate the importance of personal or dispositional factors. Why do we commit this error? A key point of Lovaglia’s: The situation is much more powerful than we think! How might a person use this information?
Affirmations Statements about what is good and positive for you. Techniques: making positive statements (in writing and/or verbally); visualizing Can affirmations work?? If so, why? Social Psychology tells us…Affirmations are behavior; we become what we do.
Self-Perception Theory Just as we observe others’ behavior, we also observe our own behavior. We infer how we feel by observing our own behavior.
Attitudes Consider your attitude on an important topic. • List the people and experiences that have contributed to the development of this attitude.
What is an “attitude”? A relatively enduring organization of beliefs around an object or situation. (Each attitude is really a package of beliefs). How do we acquire attitudes? Instrumental Conditioning Modeling Direct Experience Genetic Factors
Cognitive Dissonance Theory Overturns the common sense notion that: Attitudes-------Behavior “Dissonance” is a state of tension produced when elements are in conflict. Think of it this way (Equilibrium Process Model): equilibrium-----------dissonance-producing situation-------------------dissonance ----------attitude change---------equilibrium
How can we reduce dissonance? • Selective attention • Lower expectations • Seek support • CHANGE ATTITUDE
When is dissonance likely? After making a big decision. When there is inadequate external justification for behavior. (“external justification” is situationally-determined) e.g., Festinger & Carlsmith study, 1957) The key idea: If we can’t find sufficient external justification for our behavior, then we attempt to justify internally, by changing our attitude in the direction of our behavior. APPLICATIONS?
SYMBOLIC INTERACTIONISMGeorge Herbert Mead Herbert Blumer coined the term, “symbolic interactionism” Blumer’s Propositions: • Human beings act toward things on the basis of the meanings that things have for them. • These meanings arise out of social interaction. • Social action results from a fitting together of individual lines of action. Two Schools of Thought: the Chicago School and the Iowa School
Symbolic Interactionism This perspective emphasizes the production of society as an ongoing process of negotiation among social actors. Assumptions: 1. Symbols transfer meaning in human interaction. 2. The individual becomes humanized (socialized) through interaction with people. 3. Reality is a process. 4. Human beings have the ability to act upon the environment. What kind of image do we get of the human actor? active, creative, shapers of our own reality, goal-seeking
Symbolic Interactionism Key Terms: Meaning Definition of the Situation – One’s cognitive idea of his/her place in social time and space that constrains behavior. Taking the Role of the Other Application: Labeling
Symbolic Interactionism Distinction between signs and symbols: A sign is directly connected to an object or event and calls forth a fixed or habitual response. A symbol is something that people create and use to stand for something else. (e.g., object, gesture, word)
Symbolic Communication & Language Communication requires 2 things: Speaking & Listening What do we mean when we say to our interaction partner: “Are you listening to me?!” Listening requires our responsive attention. “pseudo-listening” – We really aren’t paying attention to what the other person is saying, although we act as if we are. What are some listening situations that are difficult?
Symbolic Communication & Language Two types of meaning: denotative meaning – The literal, explicit properties associated with a word. (The dictionary meaning) connotative meaning – Cognitive and emotional responses one has to a word. (These meanings are personal) Importance of social context – Who are we with, and what is the situation?
Symbolic Communication & Language Nonverbal Communication paralanguage – All vocal aspects of speech other than words. body language – The silent movement of body parts. interpersonal spacing – How we position ourselves at varying distances and angles from others. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=buufiBQvIPs choice of personal effects – Choices of clothing, etc.
Perception • The perceptual process involves a sequence of external events followed by internal events. • Visual agnosia is a neurological disorder characterized by the inability to recognize familiar objects. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/teachers/activities/2020_mirror_01.html
PERSON PERCEPTION Data-------------------------Theory physical behavior dispositional traits verbal behavior (personality appearance characteristics) Biases: 1. Primacy Effect – People rely more heavily on the first information they get on a person and tend to discount later information. 2. Implicit Personality Theory – Network of assumptions people make about the relationship among traits and behaviors. 3. Stereotypes – Given a group membership, we assume traits about a person.
ATTRIBUTION Attribution – The process of inferring the cause of others’ behavior. Attribution Theory is concerned with how people assign causes to events. 2 types of explanations of behavior: dispositional & situational attributions
Attribution Biases: 1. Fundamental Attribution Error 2. Actor-Observer Differences – A difference between two points of view (that of the actor and the observer). 3. Self-Serving Bias – The tendency we have to attribute positive outcomes to our own dispositions and negative outcomes to situational causes. 4. Self-Defeating Bias – Undesirable behavior is attributed to negative aspects of the self.
Harold Kelley’s Attribution Theory We use 3 types of information in making decisions about the causation of action in a situation: 1. Distinctiveness – Observe actor in similar situations. (low distinctiveness implies personal cause; high distinctiveness implies situational cause). 2. Consensus – Compare actor’s behavior to others’. (low consensus implies personal cause; high consensus implies situational cause) 3. Consistency – Observe actor’s behavior over time. (low consistency implies situational cause; high consistency implies personal cause)
Attribution • Other factors that are relevant to attribution: • Do we like the person whose behavior we are observing? • Is there a reward or punishment attached to the behavior?
Attribution • Applications of Attribution Theory: • Appraisals (e.g., self/peer/subordinate) • Marketing (e.g., advertising – do consumers attribute claims about a product to the company’s desire to sell the product, or to actual, positive attributes of the product?)
Socialization Socialization is the process by which we acquire those modes of thinking, acting, and feeling that enable us to participate in the larger human community. Agents of Socialization are persons or institutions which influence our thoughts and behaviors. Examples? Reciprocal Socialization – Recognizes that socialization is not a one-way process; e.g., kids influence adults. Examples?
Socialization Developmental psychologist Kenneth Kaye “frames” – Tools that parents/adults use to organize time and space for child. Examples: nurturant, protective, instrumental, feedback, discourse Socialization is like an apprenticeship (i.e., it is a process; it is relational).
Socialization Social Learning Theory Socialization is accomplished through two processes: 1. Direct Learning – We are first socialized via our parents’ rewards and punishments (i.e., external reinforcement). Over time, we control our own behavior through self-reinforcement (internalization makes this possible). 2. Observation/Modeling
Socialization Piaget – Cognitive Developmental Theory Socialization is a process by which the individual develops from simple to complex. 4 stages: 1. Sensorimotor object permanence, cause-effect, recognitory schemes 2. Pre-Operational knowledge of symbols 3. Concrete Operational concrete operations such as conservation and serialization 4. Formal Operational abstract thought
Socialization Developmental psychologist Erik Erikson 8 Psychosocial Stages: 1. Trust vs. Mistrust 2. Autonomy vs. Doubt 3. Initiative vs. Guilt 4. Industry vs. Inferiority 5. Identity vs. Role Confusion 6. Intimacy vs. Isolation 7. Generativity vs. Self-Absorption 8. Integrity vs. Despair
Socialization Piaget’s Theory of Moral Development 1. The Pre-Moral Period 2. Heteronomous Morality – Strong respect for rules. Child is likely to judge the naughtiness of an act by its objective consequences rather than the actor’s intent. 3. Autonomous Morality – Rules are viewed as arbitrary agreements that can be challenged.
Socialization Kohlberg’s Theory of Moral Development – 3 levels: 1. Pre-conventional – Oriented to personal needs. 2. Conventional – Oriented to social rules. 3. Post-Conventional – Oriented toward making autonomous decisions. These developmental models feature stages that are step-wise and sequential – i.e., people go through the stages one after another. But…might individuals regress in their morality? Also, might one’s actual behavior fail to correspond to his/her moral judgments?
GENDER ROLE SOCIALIZATION Freud’s Psychoanalytic Theory – The key is the process of identification. Social Learning Theory – Imitation, reinforcement. Cognitive Development Theory – Gender is an organizing scheme for the developing child. Symbolic Interactionism – “doing gender” refers to seeing gender as an activity accomplished through social interaction.
Resocialization Resocialization – The process through which adults learn new values, norms, and expectations when they leave old roles and enter new ones. Total Institutions – Place where individuals are cut off from the wider society for an appreciable period and where together they lead an enclosed, formally administered life. • Contact with outside world controlled; new recruits & inmates not allowed to see family, old friends, former associates. • Examples: Army, prisons, mental hospitals, convents, monasteries • The “Stripping process”
SELF Cooley’s Looking-Glass Self The process through which we develop our sense of self based upon the reactions of other people to our actions. G.H. Mead’s Stages to Becoming a Self: 1. The Play Stage 2. The Game Stage 3. The Generalized Other Two aspects of the self: “I” and “Me”
SELF self-concept: The sum total of beliefs you have about yourself. self-esteem: The evaluative component of the self-concept. situated self: The subset of self-concepts that constitutes the self we know in a particular situation. self-monitoring: Extent to which people use information about the environment as a basis for modifying behavior.
SELF mutable self: A self-concept that is highly adaptive to rapid social and cultural change. DOES OUR FAST-PACED SOCIETY REQUIRE THAT EACH OF US HAVE A MUTABLE SELF? DOES HAVING A MUTABLE SELF THREATEN THE SENSE OF HAVING A CORE, STABLE SELF? DO INDIVIDUALS EVER COMPLETELY CHANGE WHO THEY ARE?
SELF Identity Salience Our identities are organized hierarchically based on salience. Implications? 1. The higher the salience of an identity, the more often we will try to draw on that identity. 2. If a given identity is defined as highly important, we will be more inclined to develop it. 3. Highly salient identities can carry over.
SELF Aaron Beck’s concept of “personal domain” – Inclusive notion of what a person’s self consists of; everything that you care about and that is important for you to maintain. For example: self-concept personal goals/motives moral rules/principles possessions significant others groups that have symbolic significance
Appearance and the Self • Consider the tee shirt. • What gets communicated via tee shirts? (e.g., think about messages of style, politics, status, interests, beliefs, etc.)
Depression Characterized by the “cognitive triad” (Aaron Beck, MD) 1. negative conception of self 2. negative interpretation of life experiences 3. fatalistic view of the future The depressed person engages in “selective abstraction” – overinterpreting daily events in terms of loss.
Cognitive Therapy and Depression What we consciously think is what mainly determines how we feel. 5 tactics: 1. Learn to recognize automatic thoughts (ATs). 2. Learn to dispute the ATs by marshaling contrary evidence. 3. Learn to make different attributions (reattributions) and use them to dispute your ATs. 4. Learn how to distract yourself from depressing thoughts. 5. Learn to recognize and question assumptions that govern much of what you do.
For Discussion: WHY DOES COGNITIVE THERAPY WORK? CONSIDER THE ROLE OF SOCIAL INTERACTION. IS DEPRESSION CONTAGIOUS?