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23 Cards in this Set

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attribution theory
A group of theories that describe how people explain the causes of behaviour.
availability heuristic
The tendency to estimate the likelihood an event will occur by how easily instances of it come to mind.
base–rate fallacy
The finding that people are relatively insensitive to consensus information presented in the form of numerical data.
belief in a just world
The belief that people get what they deserve in life, an orientation that leads people to disparage victims.
belief perseverance
The tendency to maintain beliefs even after they have been discredited.
central traits
Traits that exert a powerful influence on overall impressions.
confirmation bias
The tendency to seek, interpret and create information that verifies existing beliefs.
counterfactual thinking
The tendency to imagine alternative events or outcomes that might have occurred but did not.
covariation principle
A principle of attribution theory that holds that people attribute behaviour to factors that are present when it occurs and are absent when it does not.
false–consensus effect
The tendency for people to overestimate the extent to which other people share their opinions, attributes and behaviour.
fundamental attribution error
The tendency to focus on the role of personal causes and underestimate the impact of situations on other people's behaviour.
implicit personality theory
A network of assumptions people make about the relationships among traits and behaviours.
impression formation
The process of integrating information about a person to form a coherent impression.
information integration theory
The theory that impressions are based on (1) perceiver dispositions and (2) a weighted average of a target person's traits.
mind perception
The process by which people attribute human–like mental states to animate and inanimate objects, including humans.
need for closure
The need to reduce cognitive uncertainty, which increases the importance of first impressions.
nonverbal behaviour
Behaviour that reveals a person's feelings without words, through facial expressions, body language and vocal cues.
personal attribution
Attribution to internal characteristics of an actor, such as mood, effort, personality and ability.
primacy effect
The tendency for information presented earlier in a sequence to have more impact on impressions than information presented later.
priming
The tendency for recently used words or ideas to come to mind quickly and influence the interpretation of new information.
self–fulfilling prophecy
The process by which one's expectations about a person eventually lead that person to behave in ways that confirm those expectations.
situational attribution
Attribution to factors external to the actor, such as the task, other people or luck.
social perception
A general term for the processes by which people come to understand one other.