PSYC 250.001 Social Psychology (Class Nbr: 4475)
Fall 2008

Instructor:   Tom Mitchell, Ph.D.
Classes:       2-4:30 PM Tuesdays in Room AC 214
Office:        AC 209D phone 837-5348
Office Hours:  Tuesdays and Wednesdays 12 - 2 PM

Text: Baumeister, R. F. & Bushman, B. J. (2008). Social Psychology & Human Nature (brief version)
ISBN: 0495406007

Power Point Instructions for Creating your Cengage account (for Baumeister text) (Cengage login site)  You need the Pass word that comes with your text!)

Websites for Social Psychology

Current Research in Social Psychology  (electronic journal)
Home Pages for Social Psychologists
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 
Psychological Bulletin
Steve's Primer of Practical Persuasion and Influence
Society for Personality and Social Psychology  
 Music Therapy: The Power of Music  Matthew Bush, MSW, LSW

I.     Purpose: This course is designed as an introduction to social psychology, a subsection of general psychology. The basic purpose is to acquaint you with the theories, methods and topical subject matter of social psychology. Upon completion of the course you should be familiar with the principal theories of how attitudes are formed and changed, how and why individuals perceive others as they do, how they grow to like and dislike one another, the dynamics of group behavior, some causes for aggressive behavior, and other social psychological phenomena.

II.     Objectives: (1) to gain a knowledge of social psychology, its assumptions, theories, methods, and basic findings. (2) to develop a scientific attitude toward perceiving situations involving social interaction and its effects on people. (3) to enable you to deal more effectively in your own social interactions by using principles learned in the course.

III.     Class format: Lecture on text and other subject matter. Class discussions will be conducted for the purpose of clarifying and emphasizing important topics. Individual or group projects may be assigned.

IV.     Course requirements: Understanding of content in assigned chapters and lectures, completion of outside assignments (short projects involving data collection), and participation in class discussions. Outside readings may be assigned periodically. Completion of THREE tests (non-cumulative) and a position paper.

   Grade Assignment:

Assessment of student's performance for the final grade will be comprised of three multiple choice exams on the text chapter and lecture materials and a position paper (10 page limit) on an applied social psychology topic.

Assessment     % of grade

Exam 1            25 %
Exam 2            25 %
Exam 3            25 %
Position Paper  25% 

Total              100%

1. Each of THREE tests will consist of three 60-item multiple choice questions derived from test material and lectures.
Make up tests if warranted will be essay questions based on the material covered in text and lectures.

2. One position paper worth possible 60 points

Grading Scale: test /paper score  Grade  Total points (max 240)

                                    50        A          200
                                    45        B          180
                                    40        C          160
                                    35        D          140

Chapters assigned and anticipated dates of tests:

Date         Chapter

Sept 2       Chap 1: Mission and Method (p 3)  
                  Why they became Social Psychologists                        
                 Cozby's Research Methods

Sept  8      *** Last day to drop without a W ***

Sept 9   Chap 2:   Culture and Nature (P 29)           
                                Brain Injury Patients dectect deception (Balt Sun)

Sept 16  Chap 3:   The Self (p 69)      

Sept  23  Chap 4:  Behavior Control: The Self in Action  (P 115)                     

Sept 30                 *** Exam 1  (chapters 1,2,3,4) ***

Oct               *** Last to get any refund for dropped course ***

Oct 7     Chap 5:  Social Cognition

                        Stoop test (

                     Nonberbal behavior:

                   Social Cognition and Emotion Lab (Harvard)                    

Oct 14     Chap 7:  Attitudes, Beliefs, and Consistency (P 223)

                             Implicit Attitudes Test (U. Wash & Yale U.)                        

Oct 21      Chap 8: Prosocial Behavior: Doing What's Best for Others (P 251)

                    Example of the commons dilemma: Baltimore Crabs

Oct 27         *** Last day to drop with a W ***

Oct 28      Chap 9: Aggression and Antisocial Behavior (P289)                                       

Nov 2        *** Last day to drop course with a "W" ***

Nov 4        *** Exam 2 (chapters 5,7, 8, 9) ***

Nov 11     Chap 10: Attraction and Exclusion (p325)  

Nov 18     Chap 12:  Prejudice and Intergroup Relations (P 401) 
                          Definitions of racism/prejudice    

Nov 25       Chap 13: Social Influence and Persuasion (P 441)  

                              Impression Management (Schlenker)

          ***** Position paper due date by end of day Nov 25 ****

Dec  2       Chap 14: Groups (P 477)    

Dec 9        *** Exam 3 (final) (chapters 10,12,13,14) ***