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Pia Roelen C.


February 10, 2014

Midterm Examination in Social Psychology 323

1. Is Social Psychology just a common sense? Yes or no? Why? (10 pts.)
Social Psychology is defined by Gordon Allport as something that "understands
and explains how the thought, feeling and behavior of individuals are influenced by
the actual, imagined or implied presence of other human beings" (1985). Hence, this
may lead to the reason why people perceived social psychology as just a common
sense, since it really happens in real life, wherein it doesnt really require a person to
study deeply the theories and the terminologies of social psychology in order to
understand peoples behavior or attitudes or anything. It just happens there, you feel
it and other people feel it too! It is something that happens in a daily basis. It is the
normal thing that happens in our environment, and that, maybe is one of the major
reasons why others see it as something that is just a common sense, because it
happens in real life, while people perceived psychology or seems to have that innate
stigma about psychology, as something that is not normal, something rare to their
senses, something abnormal or psycho, right?
On the other hand, for me, social psychology is definitely not just a common
sense, it is something more than that, yes, it happens in real life and it is just
common, but the thing that other people didnt really understand is how this branch
of psychology has its own science. We perceived science as chemistry, biology,
physics, but the science within social psychology is not just that, as what Elliot
Aronson had stated, sciences is not just about natural sciences, there are values,
methodology and principles of science that is woven under social psychology. The
thing with people, they feel that everything that are normal to them is just a common
sense, but the thing with social psychology, it scrutinizes and it explains what is
within the normal thing which other people have been witnessing with their daily
lives, perhaps this is the reason why men up until now cannot understand women
and why women didnt understand men, because most of them treat social
psychology as just a common sense, while it is not. Social psychology do not just
give explanations, it helps people understand other people in a very simple way
compared to nerve cracking natural sciences, in order to provide a more productive
and united society
2. Explain why deception is important in social psychology experiments. How can a
researcher manage to balance the use of deception and the right of the participants?
(10 pts.)

Deception is important in social psychology experiments because this method

enables the experimenters or the researchers come up with a result that is valid and
accurate. Although deception may sound as somewhat inappropriate because of the
ethical constraints that it may possibly impose, it still of great use. We are aware that
social psychology experiments often use situations that have the tendency of
showing undesirable behaviours, so if deception will not be use and the participants
know the true nature of the experiment, the participants might not act truthfully. For
example, the experiment is about prejudice and discrimination, if the participants
know this, they might do the opposite effect. They might be more kind and might act
more appropriately, thus deception is important in social psychology experiments so
that they will be able to come up with more valid results. Another importance of
deception is that through it, social psychology experiments are able to divulge the
psychological tendencies of the participants basing on their unconscious thoughts
that leads to gathering an information that projects great value to our society, like
having the awareness regarding many discriminatory incidents in our society
especially in employment and even in the social network, can lead to a more fair
community. Also, through deception, participants of the experiment will have the
information on how they will most likely react when confronted with such situations
which can enable them to control their behavior correctly and appropriately.
Knowing the importance of deception, we must now keep in mind that we
must always put great precaution while doing this method as it may impose ethical
constraints on the part of the participants. First, the experimenter should evaluate
the experiment and must always prioritize the safety of the participants, and that
they put them at the most minimum risks because they are the ones who have the
whole responsibility on the experimental procedures. Aside from that, informed
consent must be used, explaining that the experiment will be confidential and that
they have the freedom to dropout from the experiment when they chose to. Lastly,
after the experiment has been done, the researchers must debrief the participants
immediately to avoid the participants to feel resented and devoid by the

3. Define attribution theory and explain. Use practical (personal) illustrations. (10 pts.)
According to Aronson, attribution theory explains how individuals pinpoint the
causes of their own behaviour or that of others. Fritz Heider, the father of attribution
theory, compared people to scientistsalways trying to look for reasons. Thats why
he proposed the internal attribution and the external attribution within the attribution
theory. Internal attribution is when people are inferring that a person behaves that
way because of his or her trait or personality, that there is something within him or

her, while external attribution is when people are inferring that a certain person
behaved that way because of the situation he or she is facing, and that people seem
to prefer internal attributions as it is easier to come up with because it seems to be
less complicated.
We, people, tend to use internal attributions when judging another persons
state but tend to use more of the external attributions when looking for reasons
within ourselves especially when faced with some distressing situations. For
example, we witness a car accident while also considering the physical features of
the driver; we tend to jump into a snapped conclusion that the driver is reckless or
drunk, without even taking into account the situation that the driver is into. Second
example, you and your friend failed the midterm exam in Biological Psychology, but
people know that you are smart and you also know that, hence, you and your friend
and those other people who know you, might reasoned out that the reason why you
and your friend failed the midterm exam is maybe because you didnt review your
lessons or both of you are facing problems thats why you didnt have the chance to
fully concentrate on your studies, but never they will say that the reason why both of
you failed the examination is because you two are dumbheads. See? People has
that certain possibility to use more of the internal attributions when looking for
reasons on an outsider perspectivepinpointing causes that were more likely prejudging, but tend to use more of the external attributions when we are looking for
causes that happened within ourselves or to the people that we know.
4. What is sexism? Cite an example of advertisement that can illustrate sexism.
Describe how sexism is shown in the advertisement. What is your attitude about it?
(10 pts.)
Sexism refers to discrimination based on a persons sex which is typically
against on women, and this is usually seen as soon as we open our televisions.
Despite the so-called globalization and modernization, gender inequality or sexism
over women still exist, although it has been diminished, since women of today are
now entitled of the right to vote and the access to education, but still prejudice
among us still exist. Lets just take for example these commercials where ladies
have been used as a sexual object for advertisements, even though their
involvement doesnt really have that certain relation to the one that theyve been
advertising. The McSpicy Shake Shake Meal, where Jesse Mendiola, who happens
to be a drop-dead gorgeous and extremely hot lady sits next to a nerd guy, and let
him shake her French fries while shes eating the spicy burger with real seduction.
Another is the Red Horse ad, where sexy and pretty ladies Sam Pinto and Denisse
Laurel have been advertising, like when a man drinks Red Horse beer, they will get
these sexy and hot ladies with their oozing sensualities. Another advertisement that
shows inequality on women is the Magic Sarap ad and Bonux ad, theyre like
showing how women belong to kitchen and laundrythe usual housewife.

Actually when I am watching these kinds of advertisements on TV or

computer, I felt a bit irritated but then I have to repress it because I might look odd in
the eyes of other people, like I am some sort of a philogynist. But really, I dont feel
like watching those because I think it somehow disrespects and debases women. i
dont hate men for their emanating sexual desires and pride nor businessmen for
their strategies, what I am annoyed is how that certain normality towards men is a
debasement on the part of women. Even though it seems like a thousand years ago
since sexism on women started, it is saddening that it still exists today. Yes, we are
leaving in a seemingly patriarchal world but it doesnt explain why women have to be
stereotyped as submissive, unintelligent housewives or perhaps sexual objects? I
think sexism must stop, and people must treat each other with equalitywithout
negative stereotypes, without prejudice and discriminationwhether they are men,
women, gay, lesbian, bisexual, or even transsexual. I think this stereotype among
genders has to put to an end because at the end of the day, we all sleep, we all fart,
we all walk in the streets, thus, we are equal because we are all human. If there are
strong points for men, other genders have that as well, and as human beings with
minds and souls, we have to work hand in hand to complement each others
strengths and weaknesses rather than wasting our time pinpointing each others
weaknesses and stereotyping each other.
5. Explain how stereotype, prejudice and discrimination are interrelated. Illustrate your
answer with an example for each. (10 pts.)
Stereotypes refers when people based their beliefs or perceptions that are
based on the group in which one belongs. Prejudice comes after stereotyping, this is
when one have a certain feeling or opinion towards another person but just keep it in
themselves. Stereotyping and prejudice can either be positive or negative, but most
likely it is negative. Then, when prejudice is put into action, thats where
discrimination sets in. These three are interrelated because once you have a belief,
it affects your opinions, and if that happens, it will also eventually affects your
behaviour or your actions. It is like a step-by step process: first is stereotyping, then
prejudice, and lastly, discrimination.
Take this situation as an example, Aling Bebang is an ex-prostitute, who have
nine pretty daughters with different fathers, and is the mistress of almost half of the
tricycle drivers in your community. You have that belief that the nine daughters of
Alng Bebang are also like her, since theyre all pretty and their upbringing is bad
because of their mother (stereotyping). Then, you started having negative opinions
towards Aling Bebangs children, that they are not virgins, that they are the kind of
girls who will trade sex for money and that theyre likely to engage in too many
relationships at the same time (prejudice). After that, you started calling them names
like what your friends are doing, excluding them in baranggay activities since all of
them are prostitutes, talking to them rudely with sarcastic smiles that is debasing
their personality in some ways and treating them like they are pests in your
community (discrimination). See? Thats how stereotyping, prejudice and

discrimination are interrelated with each other.It is like a step-by-step process. Yes, it
may only start as a stereotype but it might end with discrimination which is really
cruel, like a tumor giving birth to other tumors, thus fostering a more difficult