Social psychology is the scientific study of how we interact with, think about and influence other people. Social psychology includes such topics as group processes, prejudice, love, and persuasion. Social psychology looks more specifically at individual or personal explanations, whereas sociology looks at cultural explanations. Social psychology is the scientific study of humankind as social beings. The social psychologist is interested in how individuals think about others, influence others and are influenced by others. Social psychology is exploration of theory and research concerning the individual in a social context.
Social psychologists study attitude formation; the structure of attitudes; attitude change; the function of attitudes; and the relationship between attitude and behavior. Social psychological principles are useful in stopping gang violence, reduction of discrimination, reduction of school dropout rates, reduction of domestic violence. Social psychological principles are also useful in influencing public policy, resisting the appeal of propaganda and behaviors in advertising.
Social Psychology Network is the largest social psychology database on the Internet. In these pages, you'll find more than 5,000 links related to psychology.
Current Research in Social Psychology is a peer reviewed, electronic journal covering all aspects of social psychology. Publication is sponsored by the Center for the Study of Group Processes at the University of Iowa which provides free access to its contents. Authors retain copyright for their work. CRISP is permanently archived at the Library of the University of Iowa and at the Library of Congress. Beginning in April, 2000, Sociological Abstracts publishes the abstracts of CRISP articles.
psychology: the interplay between sociology and psychology - Thoits, Peggy A.
I will focus in this article on the point of greatest intersection between the disciplines of sociology and psychology: social psychology. Within this broad interdisciplinary tradition, sociologists and psychologists routinely cite and draw from each other's theory and research. Psychologists generally specialize in identifying the mechanisms or processes through which social phenomena have their effects on individuals. Consequently, sociologists often use, explicitly or implicitly, the work of psychologists to fill in the missing links that tie society to the individual. This observation fortifies Gove's argument that sociology is, or should be, an integrative discipline, a point to which I will return below.
The Various Social Psychologies
According to Allport (1968), social psychologists attempt to understand how the actual, imagined, or implied presence of others influences the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of individuals. Allport's definition best applies to work within the discipline of psychology - what House (1977) and Stryker (1977) have termed psychological social psychology. Bystander research shows, for example, that multiple witnesses to an emergency are able to "diffuse responsibility" for taking action to other people. Diffusion of responsibility is a mechanism that helps to explain noninterventions.
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
- The journal is divided into three independently edited sections:
ATTITUDES AND SOCIAL COGNITION addresses those domains of social behavior in which cognition plays a major role, including the interface of cognition with overt behavior, affect, and motivation.
Korn, J. H. (1997). Illusions of reality: A history of deception in social psychology. Albany, NY: State University of NY Press.
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Dovidio, J. F., Gaertner, S. L., & Validzic, A. (1998). Intergroup bias: Status, differentiation, and a common in-group identity. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 75, 109-120.
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Taylor, S. E. (1998). The social being in social psychology. In Gilbert, D. T., Fiske, S. T., & Lindzey, G. (Eds.), The handbook of social psychology (3rd ed., Vol. 1), pp. 58-95. Boston: McGraw Hill.
Brim, Orville G., Jr. 1976. "Socialization in Later Life." Pp. 105-16 in Current
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Chlopan, Bruce E., Marianne L. McCain, Joyce L. Carbonell, and Richard L. Hagen. 1985. "Empathy: Review of Available Measures." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 48:635-53.
Cook, Karen S., Gary Alan Fine, and James S. House (eds.). 1995. Sociological Perspectives on Social Psychology. Allyn & Bacon.
Deaux, Kay. 1991. "Social Identities: Thoughts on Structure and Change." Pp. 77-93 in The Relational Self: Convergences of Psychoanalysis and Social Psychology, edited by Rebecca C. Curtis. Guilford Press.
Ethier, Kathleen A., and Kay Deaux. 1994. "Negotiating Social Identity when Contexts Change: Maintaining Identification and Responding to Threat." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 67:243-51.
Folkman, Susan, and Richard S. Lazarus. 1985. "If It Changes It Must Be a Process: Study of Emotion and Coping during Three Stages of a College Examination." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 48:150-70.
Isenberg, Daniel J. 1986. "Group Polarization: A Critical Review and Meta-Analysis." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 50:1141-51.
Linville, Patricia W., and Donal E. Carlston. 1994. "Social Cognition of the Self." Pp. 143-93 in Social Cognition: Its Impact on Social Psychology, edited by Patricia G. Devine, David L. Hamilton, and Thomas M. Ostrom. Academic.
Markus, Hazel, M. Crane, S. Bernstein, and M. Siladi. 1982. "Self-Schemas and Gender." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 42-38-50.
Robins, Clive J. 1988. "Attributions and Depression: Why Is the Literature So Inconsistent?" Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 54:880-89.
Smith, Allen C., III, and Sherryl Kleinman. 1989. "Managing Emotions in Medical School: Students' Contacts with the Living and the Dead." Social Psychology Quarterly 52:56-69.
Stryker, Sheldon. 1977. "Developments in 'Two Social Psychologies': Toward an Appreciation of Mutual Relevance." Sociometry 40:145-60.
Stryker, Sheldon, and Richard T. Serpe. 1994. "Identity Salience and Psychological Centrality: Equivalent, Overlapping, or Complementary Concepts?" Social Psychology Quarterly 57:16-35.
Swann, William B., Jr., John J. Griffin Jr., Steven C. Predmore, and Bebe Gaines. 1987. "The Cognitive-Affective Crossfire: When Self-Consistency Confronts Self-Enhancement." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 52:881-89.
Taylor, Shelley E., Bram P. Buunk, and Lisa G. Aspinwall. 1990. "Social Comparison, Stress, and Coping. Special Issue: Illustrating the Value of Basic Research." Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 16:74-89.