Social Psychology Definition Paper

Social Psychology Definition Paper Week 1 November 10, 2009 Social Psychology is “the scientific study of the effects of social and cognitive processes on the way individuals perceive, influence, and relate to others (Myers, 2008, p. 3). ” Bandura’s social learning theory suggests that parents have an influence on his or her child’s behavior. In most cases, children seem to mirror his or her parents’ behavior in which does always require reinforcement.

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As such the author negative learning occurred because of watching some one else perform some action and experienced reinforcement or punishment called observational learning, or modeling involved in a wide range of behaviors. Social Psychology differs from other related disciplines in that it focuses on “social” aspects of human behaviors, specifically, how people understand and interact with others. In addition, people usually learn through observation of others performing and reinforcement. The greater that person models behavior that resembles us the easier we adapt the behavior.

In addition, a lawyer’s daughter would want to become and nurse instead of a house cleaner or a farmer. Therefore, an African-American girl would also model the behavior of this girl meanwhile; an Anglo-American boy would not model the said behavior. Some children have behavioral attitudes that are from cultural differences, and children with anxiety are an exception to theoretical rules. Developmental theories can be beneficial to understand the behavior of a child through adolescence. There are some theories that are different from each other.

However, developmental theories can also have several types of similarities. The use of developmental theories can help in identifying cognitive, and physical and emotional development, of children throughout adolescent development (Rotter, 1981. pp. 37-40). Clinical Psychology is limited to the individual; General Psychology is just that, universally covering wide and brief parts of the spectrum; and Sociology is geared towards society, relationships, and interactions within, but without the “psychology” component (Myers, 2008, pp. -5). The author learned job skills by observing or shown to her by supervisor, teamwork and friends. However, learning from modeling is not entirely an automatic process but the cognitive theory that Bandura pointed out what an observer learns from watching another person. In addition, the author copied and behaved in the similar way as her parents depending on things she paid attention to, and what she was able to remember.

Since attention abilities, memory, and physical change with age, and what the author learned from given modeled event was quite different from what she learned from identical event. However, positive influences from the author’s parents or peers created positive behaviors from childhood through adolescence development (Bandura, 1998). The role of research in social psychology is science-based to investigate underlying social and cognitive processes in human behavior. The book, Social Psychology (pg. 2) references that social psychologists research many types of social issues, such as relationships, family, and divorce; altruism or aggression; attitude changes; the effectiveness of advertising; intergroup conflict or its resolution; and more that spur pure scientific curiosity. In conclusion, people learn through observing others’ behavior, attitudes, and outcomes of those behaviors. Most human behavior is learned observationally through modeling from observing others, one forms an idea of how new behaviors are performed, and on later occasions this coded information serves as a guide for action.

References Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The Exercise of Control. Retrieved November 10, 2009 Bandura, A. (1986). Social Foundations of Thought and Action: Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall. Retrieved November 10, 2009 Myers, D. G. (2008). Social psychology (9th ed. ). Boston: McGraw Hill. Retrieved November 10, 2009 Rotter, J. B. (1981). The psychological situation in social learning theory. An interactional perspective. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. Retrieved November 10, 2009

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