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Week 1 Lecture Notes

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by: Nina Goad

Week 1 Lecture Notes PSY 4390

Nina Goad
GPA 3.9
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About this Document

The are my personal notes and interpretation of the materials covered during the lectures of the first week of class.
Persuasion (Honors)
Dr John Pennington
Class Notes
Psychology, persuasion, Hovland, social psychology, Credibility, Honesty, Expertise, Source Characteristics




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"Clutch. So clutch. Thank you sooo much Nina!!! Thanks so much for your help! Needed it bad lol"
Cortez O'Hara

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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Nina Goad on Sunday January 17, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSY 4390 at Middle Tennessee State University taught by Dr John Pennington in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 28 views. For similar materials see Persuasion (Honors) in Psychlogy at Middle Tennessee State University.


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Clutch. So clutch. Thank you sooo much Nina!!! Thanks so much for your help! Needed it bad lol

-Cortez O'Hara


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Date Created: 01/17/16
Notes from PSY 4390 – Persuasion Lecture Notes Week 1 1/19/16:  Persuasion is the process of creating, strengthening, and/or converting thoughts, emotions or attitudes, and action through communication  The initial research of the theories of persuasion came from the United States’ desire to  change isolationist attitudes concerning World War II.  This caused scientific research of Persuasion theory to occur.  These theories were also used to try to make sense of the people and events involved in  World War II.  The isolationist attitudes of many Americans in that time and still today may have  something to do with the geography of our country. We never really have to worry about  direct threats from our neighbors, so therefore we focus on our internal issues in society.  During World War I, isolationist attitudes were put to the test because the United States  fought the war to aid their allies and had nothing to gain personal from the war except for the strengthening of the relationship with allies.  During the Great Depression, Americans tended to be even more isolationist as many  struggled to survive and the focused shifted inwards on the problems that American’s  were facing.  Persuasion theory and techniques were used during the World War II era to bolster  recruiting efforts and to persuade people to ration many different goods. 1/21/16:  The terrorist attacks of 9/11 sparked the United States to implement persuasion  techniques to aid in military recruitment.  The United States also used “Psy­op” techniques to bring literature into the Middle East  in order to persuade young men in those countries into not joining Hussein’s regimes.   The study of Social Psychology was spear­headed by a psychologist named Carl  Hovland.  Hovland taught at Yale, but left his job to work for the Defense department of the United  States.  Hovland mainly researched the effectiveness of training and info programs that were  designed to persuade U.S. soldiers.  After the war, Hovland decided to return to his teaching position at Yale in order to  continue his research and study.   Hovland’s approach to Social Psychology was based on the phrase “Who says what to  whom.”  Hovland collected a large amount of data during his research and the theories he created  were more of an after­thought based on his research.  Hovland is considered the pioneer of the field of Social Psychology.  In Hovland’s approach, “who” is defined as the characteristics of the source of the  communication, “what” is defined as the characteristics of the message being  communicated, and “whom” is defined as the characteristics of the recipients of the  message being communicated.   Hovland’s theory of source characteristics in regards to the source’s level of  persuasiveness is ultimately the level of credibility found in the source which is made up  of the level of the source’s honesty and expertise.  The methods of increasing our expertise in the perspective of others include calling  attention to training, experience, and accolades either by word of mouth or by displaying  items that represent those three categories.   Another method to increase expertise is to use props or trapping to create an idea of  expertise in the minds of others.  Another way to increase expertise is to speak 25% faster than the population’s average  rate of speech.  Speaking clearly and use of high­level vocabulary can also help to increase expertise. 


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