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Social Psychology Definition Paper

1170 words - 5 pages

Social Psychology PAGE 7
Social Psychology DefinitionShayolonda HerronUniversity of PhoenixEnvironmental science suggest the theory of natural selection and adaptation as causal explanations for human mating practices to anything, and sociology offers explanations for social structure and organization, but it is to social psychology that falls the task of explaining how people think about, affect, and interact with one another on a psychological, biological, and social level (Myers, 2008; Pinel, 2007). If genetic and biological predisposition is the violin and environmental factors the violinist, then the bow of social interaction is the instrument by which the two conjugate to create music (i.e. cognition and behavior). Though, in light of an examination of the main ideas and research methods of social psychology, as well as a comparison between related fields, the particular function of social interaction, as it relates to biology and psychology, comes into focus.Main Ideas of Social PsychologySocial psychologists study a set of strategies for answering questions related to attitudes and beliefs, how we interpret our world, and conformity and independence; rather than simply an objective collection of findings. Some of the main ideas that social psychology seeks to address are: the construction of our social reality; social intuition; how social influences, personal attitudes, personality, and biology shape our behavior; and how social psychology's principles can be applied in everyday life (Myers, 2008). The structure of our social reality rests on the acquisitive assumption that an objective world exists quite separate from our subjective interpretation of that world, but that we can only view reality through the lens of our beliefs and values. In addition, it is clear that the system of social intuition; automatic processing, heuristics, and implicit memory; can be influential when utilized for fast and frugal snap judgments, but can also be hazardous when more reasoned thinking is required.Our behavior is shaped by many influences, some external and some internal. We are a social animal, which means that our cultural predispositions define our circumstances. It is also apparent that our attitudes and personality play a significant role in shaping behavior as well, sometimes offsetting and sometimes reinforcing social pressures. Above all else, the idea that we are bio-psycho-social organisms operating on several levels and at the bequest of many different influences assists in explaining the multi-verse of human behavior. Lastly, the practical application of social psychology's analytical tools and explanations to the subjective beliefs, attitudes, and relationships of everyday life can help people know themselves better, think smarter, and make better decisions. The specific means by which social psychologists ascertain the aforementioned analytical tools and explanations is encapsulated in the implementation of research...

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