Possible Exam 3 Questions

1. Describe how propinquity (it's even fun to write!) can perpetuate and increase perceived similarity in our friendships. Describe how similarity can perpetuate propinquity in our friendships.

2. a) Choose one group from the following four: women, people with psychological disorders, members of a particular political party, heroin users. Explain why people who hold a prejudice against one of those four groups more likely perceive members of that group as a realistic threat than a symbolic threat.

b) Choose a different group among the four listed above. Explain why people who hold a prejudice against that group more likely perceive members of that group as a symbolic threat rather than a realistic threat.

3. Do genetics play a significant role in human aggression? Defend a position (yes or no). Use evidence to support your position. Identify the evidence you present as causal, correlational or of some other type.

4. a) Use two sources of prejudice described in the text to explain why one might expect more prejudice toward African-Americans in this country than toward homosexuals.

b) Use one source of prejudice from the text not mentioned in a) to explain why one might expect more prejudice toward homosexuals than toward African-Americans in this country.

5. Ch. 11 discusses five factors that research suggests help initiate friendships. Some of those factors appear to be more consistent with an "attitude causes behavior" perspective and some of the factors appear to be more consistent with a "behavior determines attitudes" perspective. Choose one of the five factors and explain how it could be interpreted as more consistent with attitudes cause behaviors. Choose another factor and explain how it could be interpreted as more consistent with behaviors lead to attitudes.

6. Briefly describe an example of a past or current conflict between a group you belong(ed) to and some other group. Use the research on the prisoner's dilemma and the research on the Robber's Cave summer camp to suggest two strategies that could be used to reduce the conflict you described.

7. A friend of yours asks, "Hey, did you learn anything in that Social Psychology course you took?" What would be one significant lesson that you have learned about human social behavior from this course you can tell your friend about? Use at least three course concepts from at least two different chapters to support your point.

8. Do genetics play a significant role in human attraction? Defend a position (yes or no). Use evidence to support your position. Identify the evidence you present as causal, correlational or of some other type.

9. Choose a specific prejudice other than one discussed in class (e.g., don't choose racism, Islamophobia, or prejudice towards homosexuals). Explain how three of the factors mentioned in class or the text that initiate prejudice do or do not apply to the form of prejudice you chose.

10. There are more social motives than the three we discussed at the beginning of the term. Name a different social motive that you believe is quite important in understanding social interaction. Use three different concepts, each from a different chapter/topic, to illustrate why you believe this "new" motive is important.

11. How is deindividuation's effect on social loafing similar to its effect on aggression?

12. a) Choose two of the factors discussed in class that often maintain one group's prejudice towards another group. Explain how one of those two factors can enhance or increase the impact of the other factor.

b) Choose a third factor discussed in class that maintains group prejudice. Select any strategy or concept discussed this term that is involved in influencing behavior or reducing conflict. Explain how that strategy could be used to diminish the impact of the factor you identified that maintains prejudice.

13. Name three concepts (each coming from a different chapter) discussed this term that support the statement, "It is our perception of reality, not reality itself, that influences our behavior." Briefly explain how each of the three concepts supports the statement.

14. Researchers hypothesized that increasing a woman's level of arousal would increase her perceptions of attractiveness of members of the opposite sex. To test this, eighty females were randomly selected to participate in a study. First, participants were asked to ride an exercise bike for as long as they could at a predetermined high rate of speed. Then, after a brief rest period, participants were asked to rate the physical attractiveness of a series of pictures of males. Researchers found that the longer the participants rode the bike the more attractive they rated the males in the pictures.

a) Did the researchers select an appropriate methodology (e.g., correlational study, experiment) given the stated hypothesis? Yes or No?

b) If you answered Yes, explain why the methodology was appropriate for the hypothesis. If you answered No, explain why the methodology was inappropriate for the hypothesis.

15. Using research discussed in Chapter 13, describe a strategy for reducing conflict and/or prejudice between American citizens and recent immigrants of color. Your strategy should apply at least two concepts from Chapter 13.

16. Social facilitation and social loafing both suggest that the presence of others can lessen our performance. How is the process of lessening performance different in the two phenomena?

17. a) If multiplying numbers quickly is actually a fairly difficult task, why might the presence of others hurt one's performance on that task according to Zajonc's mere presence theory?
    b) If multiplying numbers quickly is a fairly easy task for someone, why might the presence of others still hurt that person's performance according to another theory?

18. a) Are those exerting influence in groupthink more likely doing it intentionally or unintentionally? In group polarization? Explain.

b) Is groupthink more likely a result of informational influence, normative influence or the influence of authority? Explain.

c) Is group polarization more likely a result of informational influence, normative influence or the influence of authority? Explain.