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Person Perception

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* Refers to the different mental processes that we use to form judgments and draw conclusions about the characteristics and motives of other people.

Variables that give impact to person perception:
1. Characteristics of the person you are observing.
2. Context of the situation.
3. Own personal characteristics.
Based of our impressions are:
1. Roles and social norms
2. Physical cues
3. Salience of the information
Primary Effect
* The first thing we find out about a person; also called “first impression”

Actor – Observer Effect
* We think other do things because of their personalities and we think we do things because of the situation were in.
Social categorization
* Classifying a person into a certain group (social category) based on something you observe about the person which in turn, affects your judgment of them.
Implicit Personality Theory
* A collection of beliefs and assumptions that we have about how certain traits are linked to other characteristics and behaviour. * It is use to fill up missing information on a person.

* Refers to the processes through which we use available information to form impressions of others, to assess what they are like. * It allows people to understand the individuals and groups of their social world.

Social Perception are also interlinked with Self-Perception. Both are
influenced by self-motives.
Two Major Determinants of Perception:
1. Structural Factors
Those factors driving solely from the nature of physical stimuli and the natural effects they evoke on the nervous system of the individual. 2. Functional Factors
Derive primary from an individual’s needs, moods, past experiences and memory.

Whatever perception is being observed is a function of both sets of factors because neither set operates alone.

How do we form impression of others?

Ordering the world
* Putting people or things into useful categories that specify how they are related or similar to each other.

Classifications – help to serve the “knowledge” function of attitudes.

Why do we decide how to classify people and things ?

Determiners of our decision:
* Purposes of the perceiver- we use concepts to determine how people will affect the pursuit of our goals. * Social context- refers to activities that are appropriate in a given setting, to the roles ordinarily enacted there, and to people who are present. * Accessibility in memory- experience may make some classifications more accessible than others.

One way to simplify things is to organize people into a group.
* A fixed set of characteristics we tend to attribute to all group members that enable us to make quick judgments
Ethnic Stereotypes – “ Americans are industrious and intelligent”
“Filipinos are lazy”
Gender Stereotypes – “Males are more dominant, independent and aggressive”
“Females are more emotional, sensitive and gentle”

Origin of Stereotypes:
1) Direct Experiences – an encounter with a member of a group. 2) Own Self-Esteem – assuming others are inferiors just to assert own’s superiority. 3) Desire to enhance group solidarity – developing negative stereotypes of group with which we compete.

* Assumption about how personality traits are related. * A special kind of stereotyping.
* A “mental map” of the way we believe traits are related to each other. * We tend to judge a person who has one good trait as generally good. This tendency to perceive personalities as dusters of either good or bad traits is Halo Effect. Facts on IPT:

1) It has individual differences
2) It is resistance to change.
* A process through which we link behaviour to its causes- to the intentions, dispositions and events that explain why people act the way they do.

1) Dispositional Attribution (internal) – defines an act due to personal factors. 2) Situational Attribution (external) – defines an act due to situational factors.

Principle of Covariation (Kelly)
* We attribute the behaviour to the potential cause that is present when the behaviour occurs and absent when the behaviour fails to occur – the cause that covaries with the behaviour.
Three types of information:
1) Consensus – do all or only few people respond to the stimulus in the same way as the target person? Consensus asks about generalization across actors. 2) Distinctiveness – does the target person respond in the same way other stimuli as well? This asks generalization across situation. 3) Consistency – does the target person always respond in the same way to this stimuli? This asks generalization across time.

1) LLH – ( Low consensus, low distinctiveness, high consistency) – attribute to actor (internal) 2) HHH – ( high consensus, high distinctiveness, high consistency) – attribute to object (external) 3) LHL – ( low consensus, high distinctiveness, low consistency) – attribute to circumstances (internal/ external interaction)

Correspondent Inference Theory
* Analyses the conditions under which observers will conclude that dispositions of an actor’s behaviour.
Factors that affects whether or not a dispositional attribution is made include: 1) The strength of environment forces on behaviour – if we perceive environmental forces are strong, people are not likely to make dispositional attributions. 2) Normativeness – to what extent could the behaviour have been expected on the basis of roles and social norms? 3) Hedonic relevance – degree to which the action proves rewarding or punishing to the observer. 4) Personalism – extent to which the actor’s behaviour is perceived as intended to affect or influence the observer in some way.


* Variables that give impact to person perception.
* Bases of our impressions.
* Primary effect.
* Actor – observer effect.
* Social categorization.
* Implicit personality effect

* Determinants of perception
* Why do we classify people and things?
* How do we decide how to classify people and things?
* Stereotype
* Origins of stereotypes
* Implicit personality theory
* Attribution
* Correspondent theory

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