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Social Cognition: How We Think about the Social World Chapter 3 Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Social Cognition Social Cognition

Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Two Kinds of Social Cognition 1. Quick and automatic 2. Controlled thinking Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

On Automatic Pilot: Low-Effort Thinking Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Automatic Thinking Thinking that is nonconscious, unintentional, involuntary, and effortless.

Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. People as Everyday Theorists: Automatic Thinking with Schemas Schemas Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

People as Everyday Theorists: Automatic Thinking with Schemas The term schema encompasses our knowledge about many things: Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Stereotypes about Race and Weapons

When applied to members of a social group such as a fraternity or gender or race, schemas are commonly referred to as stereotypes. Stereotypes can be applied rapidly and automatically when we encounter other people. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

The Function of Schemas: Why Do We Have Them? Schemas are typically very useful Schemas are particularly important when we Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Schemas as Memory Guides Schemas also help people fill in the blanks when they are trying to remember things. We dont remember exactly as if our minds were cameras. Instead, we remember some information that was there (particularly information our schemas lead us to pay attention to), and we remember other information that was

never there but that we have unknowingly added. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Schemas as Memory Guides Memory reconstructions tend to be consistent with ones schemas. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Which Schemas Are Applied? Accessibility and Priming Accessibility Priming Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Making Our Schemas Come True: The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy Self-Fulfilling Prophecy The case whereby people Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Mental Strategies and Shortcuts What shortcuts do people use?

One way is to use schemas to understand new situations. When making specific kinds of judgments and decisions, however, we do not always have a ready-made schema to apply. At other times, there are too many schemas that could apply, and it is not clear which one to use. What do we do? Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Mental Strategies and Shortcuts Judgmental Heuristics Mental shortcuts people use to make judgments quickly and efficiently. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. How Easily Does It Come to Mind?

The Availability Heuristic Availability Heuristic Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. How Similar Is A to B? The Representativeness Heuristic Representativeness Heuristic

Base Rate Information Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. The Power of Unconscious Thinking Part of the definition of automatic thinking is that it occurs unconsciously.

Although unconscious processes can sometimes lead to tragic errors, unconscious thinking is frequently critical to navigating our way through the world. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Cultural Determinants of Schemas

An important source of our schemas is the culture in which we grow up. In fact, schemas are an important way cultures exert their influence: by instilling mental structures that influence how we understand and interpret the world. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Controlled Social Cognition: High-Effort Thinking Racial profiling has received much attention since the events of September 11, 2001. Because the terrorists who flew the planes into the World Trade Center were of Middle Eastern descent, some people feel anyone a

similar background should receive special scrutiny when flying on commercial airlines. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Controlled Social Cognition: High-Effort Thinking Racial prejudice can result from either automatic thinking or conscious,

deliberative thinking. Controlled Thinking Thinking that is conscious, intentional, voluntary, and effortful. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Mentally Undoing the Past

Counterfactual Reasoning Mentally changing some aspect of the past in imagining what might have been. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved. Mentally Undoing the Past Counterfactual Reasoning Counterfactual thinking can be useful,

however, if it focuses peoples attention on ways that they can cope better in the future. It is not so good if counterfactual thinking results in rumination, whereby people repetitively focus on negative things in their lives. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Thought Suppression and Ironic Processing Thought Suppression The attempt to avoid thinking about something we would prefer to forget. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Improving Human Thinking Overconfidence Barrier The fact that people usually have too much confidence in the accuracy of their judgments. Copyright 2010 Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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