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Principles of Social Psychology

by: Mariela Tremblay IV

Principles of Social Psychology 034 020

Marketplace > University of Iowa > Sociology > 034 020 > Principles of Social Psychology
Mariela Tremblay IV
GPA 3.7


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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Mariela Tremblay IV on Friday October 23, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to 034 020 at University of Iowa taught by Staff in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 33 views. For similar materials see /class/227985/034-020-university-of-iowa in Sociology at University of Iowa.


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Date Created: 10/23/15
Persuasion and Social Impact Jennifer Humphrey 00097399 102204 Introduction The power of persuasion is everywhere From politics to advertisements to daily interaction people are constantly persuaded to think a certain way buy a certain product or behave in a certain manner Whether openly aggressive or latent certain aspects affect the degree of success of persuasion within an individual or group Both the CommunicationPersuasion Paradigm as well as Social Impact Theory serve to illustrate and predict the success or failure of the ideas being persuaded Sociological Concepts Generally persuasion is the idea of a subsequent change in attitudes or beliefs due to the reception of a particular message Wolensky 2004d In relationship to the Communication Persuasion Paradigm persuasion results from the desire to obtain those accurate attitudes and beliefs In order to do so it is important to consider four main aspects of determining the legitimization of that accuracy the expertise and trustworthiness of the persuader the physical appearance of the source as well as others responses to the message of the persuader Generally expertise is considered to any previous experience in the relevant field or area of persuasion Trustworthiness plays a large role in the idea that those held as honest and trusted sources will be more in uential to the target Likewise physical appearance and professionalism work to produce an image of credibility Lastly considering others responses to the sources message is important in conveying the desire for conformity and abiding by group norms Wolensky 2004b In addition two more factors help to illustrate the CommunicationPersuasion Paradigm those being the central persuasion route and the peripheral persuasion route The central persuasion route is based on the idea that the arguments of persuasion are completely focused on the relevant issues of the argument Oppositely arguments that do not further elaborate on the sources message but include eXtemporaneous details such as personal appearance or credibility of the source are considered to be part of a peripheral persuasion route Wolensky 2004c Messages also aid in persuasion Discrepant messages are ones that contradict a person s current beliefs and can be difficult to successfully persuade due to this fact Fearinducing messages play on the idea that one should change hisher beliefs in order to avoid some negative event For messages to be successful in the persuasion of a target a highly credible source or prior knowledge in the topic is beneficial Wolensky 2004a In addition considering the qualities of the target may also affect persuasion If the target is personally involved with the issue at hand likes cognitive thinking and is focused on the argument persuasion is much more likely Wolensky 2004c Concurrently Social Impact Theory also deals wit the representations of the source message and the target Social Impact Theory argues that persuasion experienced by any given target is directly in uenced by the strength and immediacy as well as number of targets To begin a target is a group or individual that the persusive message is directed towards while a source is the person or group intending to persuade others Immediacy is the idea that the greater the physical or psychological distance the smaller the likelihood of persuasion Lastly the number of targets is also important as it affects persuasion through the diffusion of responsibility for each target Therefore a larger group will be less likely to be persuaded than a smaller group or individual Jackson 1990 Application An example of these sociological concepts from my own situation would be that of the time I wanted to take Friday off of work I am a parttime dental assistant and wanted to take off early to get on the road for my vacation As it turned out my boss was also on vacation so I had to get permission from the other four ladies that work in that department who are also my supervisors When everyone was sitting together in the office working on their computers I proposed my question to all of them I wanted to get an earlier start so I could avoid having to drive by myself in the dark I explained that I could get all of my work done before I left and with my only patient scheduled for that day an assistant was not necessary I also told them that I had hardly taken any days off in the past semester Another student that I work with said that he could help out if I was gone At first no one really answered me but after sitting all together for several hours one finally gave me permission to take the day off This relates to the sociological concepts I previously discussed in several ways I used both central and peripheral persuasion tactics in my arguments and reasoning An example of a central persuasion route was when I said that I needed the day off so I could leave earlier and not have to drive in the dark by myself Here I focused directly on the reasoning for my argument However I also used peripheral persuasion routes when I said that I had only taken a few days off in a while alluding to my personal credibility rather than the argument for persuasion The fact that I come to work punctually and one of the other student workers said that he could do the work himself illustrated positive characteristics in determining the accuracy of the source and of my persuasion The targets my coworkers were highly involved with the issue as they would have to do some of my work as I would be gone Also they were distracted as they were all half listening to me and working on their computers They were not able to directly focus on my arguments of persuasion Both of these factors are somewhat negative and make the likelihood of persuasion less likely As I am just a parttime student worker I do not think that I have much source strength as I am at a low status level and literally no power in the department where I work However Ithink a large factor in persuading them into giving me the day off was my source immediacy As I said previously we had to all work in the same room together for like four hours I did not leave and they couldn t therefore the physical space between us did not allow for my coworkers to forget or ignore the request However the number of targets was five somewhat diffusing the responsibility between them rather than putting it on one The smaller the number of targets the greater the chance for persuasion as they feel more pressure to comply Further Direction Eventually my persuasive efforts were successful I gave my coworkers several positive reasons on why they should give me the day off of work Fortunately I think my peripheral persuasion route worked to my advantage I had always been responsible in the past I could be rewarded for one day However if I were to change my persuasive efforts to improve for the future Ithink that I would use a divide and conquer approach Ithink that no one gave me permission at first ie was persuaded due to the number of targets Ithink that everyone else assumed that someone else would respond Likewise I am the youngest employee in our department a fact that I cannot change and therefore think that my low status as a parttime student worker played a role in my persuasive efforts Conclusion Many factors affect how one will be persuaded including the idea being persuaded the person intent on persuading another and the person being persuaded Both the Communication Persuasion Paradigm and Social Impact Theory aid in understanding the characteristics of the process of persuasion On a daily basis interaction with other people is comprised of instances of persuasion of which some may be subtle in uences yet others may be overt arguments It is in responding to these persuasions that our beliefs and attitudes are changed or formed References 0 Sedikides Constantine and Jeffrey M Jackson 1990 Social Impact Theory A Field Test of Source Strength Source Immediacy and Number of Targets Basic and Applied Social Psychology 273281 0 Wolensky Nicole 2004a quotCommunicationPersuasion Paradigm Consider the Message Social Psychology Lecture 034020 0 Wolensky Nicole 2004b quotCommunicationPersuasion Paradigm Consider the Source Social Psychology Lecture 034020 0 Wolensky Nicole 2004c quotCommunicationPersuasion Paradigm Consider the Target Social Psychology Lecture 034020 0 Wolensky Nicole 2004d Conformity In uence and Persuasion De nitions Social Psychology Lecture 034020


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