Applied Social Psychology

Using a seminar format, discussions generally will focus on 2 empirical journal articles, which serve as exemplars of the type of research conducted on the topic. Short mini-lectures and the prerequisites of Psyc343 (Social Psychology) and Psyc212 (Experimental Design) should provide a sound theoretical background to each topic. Students enrolling in this course to fulfil the LAS writing requirement also must register for Psyc488 at the beginning of the semester.

Weekly Comments
Objective. Writing weekly comments will enhance discussion quality, by encouraging critical thinking about readings prior to class.
Procedure. Each Monday by 3 pm, please submit 2 copies of your comments in the envelope outside my door. I will collate them by 4 pm, and leave copies outside my door for the cofacilitators. There are no formal "rules" regarding the weekly comments. Given what they are intended to achieve within the class period (a stimulating, somewhat organized discussion), here are some guidelines: Write 1 page per article; refer liberally to your background in social psychology for support. Make and support at least 2 or 3 points for each article. Given what they are intended to achieve, late critiques will not be accepted.
Students enrolled in the optional writing practicum must write critiques for both articles; other students will be assigned one article to critique. However, all students are required to read all articles, even ones for which they do not write a critique. The instructor and co-facilitators will make a point to direct discussion to both critiquers and non-critiquers; the instructor will keep notes on who contributes to the discussion.
You might address questions such as the following. How does this paper relate to other theories? Is the theoretical rationale sound? Does the study really demonstrate what it claims to demonstrate? What are some alternative explanations (e.g., from your previous courses in social psychology). Are there problems with the design, statistics, procedures, etc? Is the article just old wine in new skins? What might other theories of social psychology have to say about this finding or approach? Are the results of any consequence? What further directions should be taken in this line of research?

Objective. Co-facilitation of discussions will help develop skills in leading group conversations (particularly for seminars and workshops). Second, co-facilitation should keep the style of weekly discussion fresh, by capitalizing on the variety of styles represented by the students' interests and personalities.
Procedure. Students each will co-facilitate once . The co-facilitators' role is to help keep the conversation going, and on track. Again, there are no formal "rules" to go by. If you feel creative, fine. If you feel task-oriented, fine. In general, though, I would suggest clustering the comments ahead of time: by issue, by depth, or whatever seems to fit the particular topic. If you wish, you may begin the discussion by "setting the stage," (i.e., sketching design, abstracting the main points, etc). As the conversation develops, encourage people who wrote pertinent comments to contribute to the class. Try changing the topic when it is exhausted or becomes trivial.

Term project
Objective. The term project should encourage in-depth pursuit of a topic addressed by applied social psychology, but topics only brushed upon in class or not covered in class.
Procedure. Students will write a literature review on an applied social psychology topic of their own choosing. Please do not exceed 10-12 pages. Students are REQUIRED to discuss potential topics with the instructor to help determine appropriateness to the course. All papers are due in class on April 2. The instructor reserves the right to penalize late papers and reward early papers. During the last 2 weeks of the course, all students will present their project to the class.
Papers submitted on April 2 will be assigned two grades. The first grade reflects the paper's merit if a re-write were not permitted (i.e., a standard paper grade), and will contribute 50% to the final COURSE grade for all students. The second grade reflects the paper's merit as a second-to-last version of the paper. This grade is intended as a guide for students in the practicum regarding the degree to which the paper requires revision and is NOT averaged into any grade. For students enrolled in the practicum, revisions are due May 5 at 8am. The revised paper grade contributes 70% to the 1 credit PRACTICUM grade but nothing to the COURSE grade. Students not enrolled in the practicum are neither permitted nor required to re-write their papers and, because re-writes contribute to the practicum grade only, are not disadvantaged by not re-writing. No other rewrites are permitted or required of any student.

Students' work must be their own. You may not solicit help from other people (e.g., classmates, professors, other students, significant others) in outlining or writing your paper. (Substantial paraphrasing and borrowing of ideas without appropriate citation can be construed as plagiarism,so be sure that you understand what constitutes a breech of the honor code

    Course Evaluation
  • -critiques (dropping lowest of 11 grades): 20%
  • -class participation cofacilitation, presentation, contribution: 30%
  • -term paper (as submitted on April 2): 50%

    Practicum Evaluation
  • -additional critiques (dropping lowest of 11 grades): 30%
  • -rewrite of term paper (as submitted on May 5): 70%

Topics and Tentative 1997 Readings
Not necessarily covered in this order

Promoting Healthy Behavior (focus on attitudes and persuasion)

Reinecke, J., Schmidt, P., & Ajzen, l. (1996). Application of the theory of planned behavior to adolescents' condom use: A panel study. Journal Of Applied Social Psychology ,26, 749-772.

Stone, J., Aronson, E., Crain, A. L. (1994). Inducing hypocrisy as a means of encouraging young adults to use condoms. Personality & Social Psychology Bulletin, 20, 116-

Clinical Settings (focus on personal control and depression)

Davis, C. G., Lehman, D. R., Wortman, C.B., Silver, R. C., & Thompson, S. C. (1995). The undoing of traumatic life events. Personality & Social Psychology Bulletin, 21, 109-124.

Swann, W. B., Wenzlaff, R. M., & Krull, D. S. (1992). Allure of negative feedback: self- verification strivings among depressed persons. Journal Of Abnormal Psychology, 101, 293

Sexual Violence (focus on spouse abuse)

Dutton, D. G., Saunders, K., Starzomski, A., & Bartholomew, K. (1994). Intimacy-anger and insecure attachment as precursors of abuse in intimate relationships. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 24, 1367-1386

Sugarman, D. B. Aldaronodo, E., Boney-McCoy, S. (1996). Risk marker analysis of husband-to- wife violence: A continuum of aggression. Journal Of Applied Social Psychology, 26, 313-337

The Media (focus on modeling; aggression)

Ballard, M. E., Weist, J. R. (1996). Mortal Kombat: The effects of violent videogame play on males' hostility and cardiovascular responding. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 26, 717-730

Coats, E. J., & Feldman, R. S. (1995). The role of television in the socialization of nonverbal behavioral skills. Basic And Applied Social Psychology, 17, 327-341

Sports Psychology (focus on Social Identity Theory; stereotyping)

Branscomb, N. R., Wann, D. L., Noel, J. G., Coleman, J. (1993). In-group or out-group extremity: Importance of the threatened social identity. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 19, 381-388.

Frank, M. G., & Gilovich, T. (1988). The dark side of self and social perception: Black uniforms and aggression in professional sports. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 54, 74- 85.

School Settings (focus on prejudice and discrimination)

Aronson, E., & Bridgeman, D. (1988). Jigsaw groups and the desegregated classroom: In pursuit of common goals. In E. Aronson (Ed.). Readings about the social animal (5th ed). (pp. 354-364). New York: Freeman.

Van de Ven, P. (1995). Effects on high school students of a teaching module for reducing homophobia. Basic And Applied Social Psychology, 17, 153-172

VIDEO: "The Eye of the Storm"

Organizational Settings

Bylsma, W. H., Major, B., & Cozzarelli, C. (1995). The influence of legitimacy appraisals on the determinants of entitlement beliefs Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 17, 223-237.

Kemery, E. R. Bedeian, A. G. Zacur, S. R. (1996). Expectancy-based job cognitions and job affect as predictors of organizational citizenship behaviors. Journal Of Applied Social Psychology, 26, 635-651

Environmental Psychology

Anderson, C. A., Deuser, W. E., & DeNeve, K. M. (1995). Hot temperatures, hostile affect, hostile cognition, and arousal: Tests of a general model of affective aggression. Personality & Social Psychology Bulletin, 21, 434-448.

Latane, B., & L'Herrou, T. (1996). Spatial clustering in the conformitycrowding experience on game: Dynamic social impact in electronic groups. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 70, 1218-1230.

Volunteerism and Activism

Breckler, S. J. (1994). Memory for the experience of donating blood: Just how bad was it? Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 15, 467-488

Duncan, L. E., & Stewart, A. J. (1995). Still bringing the Vietnam War Home: Sources of contemporary student activism. Personality & Social Psychology Bulletin, 21, 914-924

Political Issues (focus on attitude polarization)

McHoskey, J. W. (1995). Case Closed? On the John F. Kennedy Assassination: Biased Assimilation of Evidence and Attitude Polarization. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 17, 395-409

Schwartz, N., & Bless, H. (1992). Scandals and the public's trust in politicians: Assimilation and contrast effects. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 18, 574-579.

Legal Settings (focus on group decision making; pragmatics)

Johnson, J. D., Whiteston, E., Jackson, L. A., & Gatto, L. (1995). Justice is still not colorblind: Differential racial effects of exposure to inadmissible evidence. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 21, 893-898.

Kerwin, J., & Shaffer, D. R. (1994). Mock jurors versus mock juries: The role of deliberations in reactions to inadmissible testimony. Personality & Social Psychology Bulletin, 20, 153-162.

Class presentations

Undergraduate Courses

Social Psychology on the Web

Last updated 11/12/96