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Psychology 11 -- Social Psychology

Course meets on Mondays and Wednesdays from 12:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Located in Building M, Room M221

Section Number: 33070
Registration closes Saturday, January 28, 2006.

Withdrawal with refund deadline is Saturday, January 28, 2006.

Withdrawal deadline without grade of "W" is Friday, February 3, 2006.


There are several goals which we shall try to achieve in this course:
1. To gain a broad-based knowledge of Social Psychology as an academic discipline, including a basic familiarity of the facts and theories Social Psychology (see the semester schedule below).
2. To be able to use and apply one's knowledge of Social Psychology to practical, everyday situations, including events which students themselves encounter in their own lives.
3. To develop an understanding of Social Psychology as a science, and how its theories and knowledge are rooted in scientific methods.
4. To become a "critical consumer" of Social Psychology:

a. To recognize both strengths and weaknesses in social-psychological thinking and research.

b. To appreciate the diversity of opinion within the field of Social Psychology.

c. To realize the extent to which social-psychological principles and research are culturally relative -- in many cases they are completely dependent on the culture which generated them (usually so-called "Western" culture), and not necessarily applicable to other societies.

d. To understand the scientific and human values which underlie Social Psychology, and the ethical dilemmas which Social Psychologists sometimes face.
Each of these goals will be made explicit on several occasions during the course of the semester, and will implicitly guide the course throughout the semester. The class will be taught through lectures and class discussions, with occasional use of class demonstrations and films. All students are encouraged to participate in class discussions and to ask questions; the class is most enjoyable when it is interactive.

Social Psychology (4th ed.) by Stephen L. Franzoi.

Boston: McGraw-Hill, 2006.


There will be additional required readings to supplement the text, which are on reserve in the library.


A packet containing outlines of the lectures for the entire semester are

available at the bookstore, on reserve at the library, or on the web at
An on-line study guide to the text can be found at, then click on "Learning Center," then "Student Edition."

Students who miss several consecutive class meetings will be dropped from the class for administrative purposes. If you have a long-term illness or other reason why you will miss several consecutive class meetings, and do not wish to be dropped from the class, please notify the instructor as soon as possible. On the other hand, if you wish to withdraw from the class, you should initiate the procedure yourself. Do not automatically assume that you will be dropped by the instructor.

There will be three mid-term exams and one final exam. Each mid-term exam will have 75 multiple-choice questions and be worth 75 points, and the final exam will have 85 multiple-choice questions and be worth 85 points. No multiple-choice exam will be cumulative. For the first exam, a ParSCORE STUDENT ENROLLMENT SHEET (Scantron form #20787-ERI) is required. For the subsequent exams, a narrow ParSCORE TEST FORM (Scantron form #20788-ERI) is required. A #2 pencil is required for each exam. All exams are closed book, closed notes.


Every student is required to write two take-home thought essays for this class. They should each be approximately 2 1/2 typed, double-spaced pages long. The essays are due at the end of class on Wednesday, March 29, and on Monday, May 15 (late papers will have points deducted) and each is worth 25 points toward the grade. This assignment is described in more detail on pp. 6-8 of this outline.

In addition to 85 multiple-choice questions, there will be a 25 point essay question on the final exam similar to the take-home essay described on

pp. 6-8. This essay is described in more detail on p. 9 of this outline.

Students may earn up to 16 points of extra credit by writing critical reviews of research manuscripts in Social Psychology. Students may do two such extra-credit critical reviews; each review is worth 8 points. Each paper should be approximately 2 typed, double-spaced pages long. This assignment is described in more detail on p. 10 of this outline, and is due at the end of class on Monday, May 8.
The final grade will be based on the cumulative point total of all exams and essays. The minimum point total cutoffs for grades will be no higher than as follows: 82% = A, 70% = B, 58% = C, 48% = D. The cutoffs may be somewhat lower, depending on the performance of the class. Class attendance and participation are not formally considered in grading, but will be considered in deciding borderline grades.
There will be NO make-up exams unless you have a LEGITIMATE reason for missing an exam, VERIFIED IN WRITING, such as a valid medical excuse signed by a doctor, or a work-related note signed by your supervisor. In the event that a make-up exam is deemed appropriate, it will not be given later than one week following the scheduled exam. If you have a verified, legitimate reason for missing an exam, and a make-up exam is impractical or inappropriate, your final grade will be determined by the other three exams. If you miss an exam, please discuss the matter with the instructor IMMEDIATELY -- if you leave a phone message with the social sciences department office, (562) 938-4477 INCLUDING YOUR PHONE NUMBER, the instructor will return your call. If you email him at, he will respond as soon as possible. Please call the department office ONLY IN THE EVENT OF AN EMERGENCY SUCH AS MISSING AN EXAM. If you know in advance that you will have to miss an exam, please contact the instructor as soon as possible so that alternative arrangements can be made. The final exam is MANDATORY.

Any student caught cheating on an exam will get a score of zero on that exam, and is subject to further disciplinary action.


The instructor will usually be available to discuss Psychology and answer questions about the text, lectures, exams, papers, and generally shoot the breeze on Mondays and Wednesdays from 9:30 - 11:00 a.m., and 2:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m., and by appointment. The instructor's office is M223. Please do not leave papers on a desk in the office or under the office door as the instructor may not get them. Please leave messages with the department secretary (562-938-4477) ONLY IN THE CASE OF AN EMERGENCY (missing an exam is an emergency, missing any other class meeting is not). If an emergency should arise, please keep the message BRIEF and please provide your telephone number so that the instructor can return your call. The instructor's e-mail address is


Assigned Reading Lecture Topic

Week 1


Monday, January 18 Chapter 1 Theories of Social Psychology

Week 2

January 23, 25 Chapter 2 Research Methods of Social Psychology

Week 3

January 30, February 1 Chapters 3, 4, 5 Social Cognition and Attributions

pp. 261-274 (Stereotypes)
Week 4

Monday, February 6 Chapters 3, 4, 5 Social Cognition and Attributions

Wednesday, February 8 Stanford Prison Experiment
Week 5

Monday, February 13 EXAM on Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, pp. 261-274,

and lectures of January 18 - February 8.
Wednesday, February 15 Chapters 6, 7 Attitudes
Week 6


Wednesday, February 22 Chapters 6, 7 Attitudes

Week 7

February 27, March 1 Chapters 6, 7 Attitudes

pp. 424-426 (Balance Theory)
Week 8

March 6, 8 Chapter 9 Compliance, Conformity, and Obedience

Week 9

Monday, March 13 EXAM on Chapters 6, 7, 9, pp. 424-426,

and lectures of February 15 - March 8.

Wednesday, March 15 FLEX DAY NO CLASS
Week 10

March 20, 22 Chapters 11, 12 Affiliation, Attraction, and Love

Week 11

Monday, March 27 Supplemental Sexual Behavior

Chapter on Sexuality, pp. 258-259 (Heterosexism)

Wednesday, March 29 Supplemental Gender Roles

Chapter on Gender, pp. 289-293 (Sexism),
pp. 70-71 (Gender Schemas)


Assigned Reading Lecture Topic
Week 12

April 3, 5 Supplemental Gender Roles

Chapter on Gender,

pp. 289-293 (Sexism),

pp. 70-71 (Gender Schemas)
Week 13

Monday, April 10 EXAM on Chapters 11, 12, Supplemental Chapters

on Sexuality, Gender, pp. 70-71, 258-259, 289-293,

and lectures of March 20 - April 5.
Wednesday, April 12 Chapter 13 Aggression
Week 14

Monday, April 24 Chapter 14 Prosocial Behavior

Wednesday, April 26 Chapters 8, 10 Group Behavior
Week 15

May 1, 3 Chapters 8, 10 Group Behavior

Week 16

Monday, May 8 Chapters 8, 10 Group Behavior

Wednesday, May 10 Organizational Behavior
Week 17

Monday, May 15 Supplemental Environmental Psychology

Chapter on

Environmental Psychology

Wednesday, May 17 Supplemental Applied Topics in Social Psychology

Chapter on Applied

Social Psychology
Week 18

Wednesday May 24 1:20 - 3:50 p.m.

FINAL EXAM on Chapters 8, 10, 13, 14, Supplemental

Chapters on Environmental Psychology, Applied Social

Psychology, and lectures of April 12 - May 17.


Every student is required to write two thought essays for this course. They should be approximately 2 1/2 pages long (in the 2-3 page range), typed, double spaced, and are each worth 25 points toward the grade. The first is due no later than at the end of class on Wednesday, March 29, 2006, and the second is due no later than at the end of class on Monday, May 15, 2006. One point will be deducted for each class day a paper is late.
For each thought essay, select any one of the following nine questions. Try to answer the questions in a way which demonstrates BOTH a knowledge of the subject matter and the ability to apply this knowledge to the situation depicted in the question. You may NOT use the same question for both thought essays. WARNING: some students have a tendency to write stories concerning the scenarios in the questions without addressing the relevant facts or theories from social psychology. To get credit, it is necessary to demonstrate knowledge of the relevant facts and/or theories.
Students should base their essays on information obtained from the textbook and lectures; any outside readings must be approved by the instructor in advance. While it is expected that students will obtain their information for the essays from the textbook and the lectures, direct plagiarism of the text is not acceptable and will be penalized heavily. Plagiarism includes the use of ANY sentence or part thereof (including definitions) which has obviously been copied from the text. Students are advised to write the essays with the text closed so as not to be tempted to plagiarize from it or to copy from it inadvertently.
Students are advised to keep duplicate copies of their essays and all other written materials.
Points will be assigned as follows:
Relevant facts about the topic -- 20 points

In general, I will be looking for at least five different pieces of factual information, although this may vary somewhat for each question. Be sure to define terms which are not part of everyday English.

Organization, integration of ideas,

and ability to apply factual knowledge -- 5 points


1. Ken just turned 18 and is voting for the first time. He has joined the Progressive Conservative Party and thinks their candidate for Governor, the esteemed Boris B. Blowhard, is just the best. Discuss Ken's attitudes toward the Progressive Conservative Party and Boris Blowhard. Your discussion may include the components and functions of these attitudes, how they were formed, and how Ken might be persuaded to change them by another candidate, Harriet H. Hollowhead of the Dynamic Inaction Party. (You need not address ALL these points; choose just one or two aspects of attitudes for your discussion.)
2. Boris Blowhard is a concerned legislator. He wants to encourage people to live in racially integrated neighborhoods. A great idea comes to him: use the property tax system to encourage people to live in integrated neighborhoods. People who live in districts which meet the integration guidelines will pay less property tax! As an expert in social psychology, you are hired as a consultant to advise Boris. Analyze this situation using your knowledge of social psychology -- how might this work and what needs to be watched out for. Be sure to include Cognitive Dissonance theory in your analysis, as well as any other facts and theories which you think are important.
3. Your friend Debra has been acting very strange lately. She is withdrawn and sometimes even nasty. Why might she be behaving this way? Propose a possibility or two and discuss them using Attribution Theory. What about her behavior makes you think of the causes you did? (Feel free to add to the story if you feel as if it does not have sufficient information to make attributions about her behavior. It is not necessary to use every aspect of every Attribution Theory we have discussed; pick a model or two which you feel comfortable with.)
4. William Wimpwump had a hard day. At work, his boss gave him orders to ignore the engineering reports that their company's new product (a nuclear powered toothbrush) was defective and could kill people through radiation poisoning, and to issue fake reports about its safety. Even though he knew the orders to be immoral he obeyed them. Moreover at a staff meeting where other employees said the toothbrush was safe, he did not speak up to contradict them, even though they all knew of the bad safety report. When he got home, salespersons of every description used every trick in the book to get him to buy thousands of dollars worth of useless junk. Using what you know about obedience, conformity, compliance, and social power, discuss some part of William's day.
5. Mary and Roger live in a dorm at a local college. They met a few months ago and have been dating each other since then. They are now considering such issues as their roles in their relationship, whether to have sex with each other, whether to marry, or whether to break up. Discuss their relationship in terms of what you know about attraction, love, intimate relationships, and/or gender roles. You can discuss any aspect of their relationship you wish (e.g., how they met, how their relationship developed, where it will head). You need not discuss ALL the parts of their relationship; pick an area which you find interesting.
6. Your friend Billy is frequently aggressive. He always seems to be yelling at people and hitting people. In addition, Billy never thinks about helping other people in need. Another friend, Jonathan, is very different. Jonathan is rarely aggressive and helps other people whenever he can, even perfect strangers, and even when the circumstances are dangerous for him and there is no possibility of personal reward. Discuss the aggressive behavior of Billy and/or the prosocial behavior of Jonathan. (Both Billy and Jonathan are your peers and are about your age.) What sorts of things do they do? Why do they behave the way they do?
7. Mary is President of Marketing Mavericks Monopoly. She is very forceful and directive in her style. She is very concerned about getting work done perfectly and done on time, and it doesn't bother her if her workers don't all like her. She frequently gives bonuses to good workers and fines slow ones. Theodore is President the of Society of Dispossessed Thumb-Twiddlers. He is relaxed and is much more interested that everyone gets along rather than getting things done. All of the thumb-twiddlers like and admire Theodore. Discuss Mary and/or Theodore in terms of what you know about leadership. What are their basic styles of leadership? When is that style most likely to be effective? You may also discuss social power, decision making, communication, and anything else you think is related to leadership.
8. On the planet Rigel IV, there are large communities of Humans, Klingons, and Romulans, and the high school has just been integrated. There has been tremendous prejudice and hostility between these groups in the past, and the school administrators want to have a school in which the children can learn in peace and hopefully develop inter-species friendships. Discuss some possibilities of how the prejudice, stereotypes, hostility, and conflict may have formed between the groups, what could be done to relieve it, and the probable outcomes of the desegregation program. You need not know anything about Star Trek to do this assignment; assume that the group dynamics are the same as between human groups. You may discuss any aspects of prejudice, stereotypes, group dynamics, or group conflict which you think are interesting and relevant.
9. Mingmang is the King of Mars. He has just received a letter from Jubjub, the Emperor of Jupiter, which asserts the right of Jupiter to mine ore in asteroids which Mars had claimed as its own. Mingmang gathers his advisers together to decide what to do about the situation. Mingmang himself thinks war is the only solution, and his advisers are all old friends going back hundreds of years. Discuss this situation in terms of the Groupthink paradigm. Is groupthink likely to occur? How would the group decision process work? What could be done to avoid groupthink? In addition to groupthink, you may also include any other information relevant to group dynamics and group conflict that you wish.
On the Final Exam, each student will be required to write a third essay on one of the questions listed on pp. 6-8 of this outline. Students may choose any question for this essay EXCEPT the ones they chose for the take-home thought essays. The grading criteria will be the same as for the take-home essays. Paper for the essay will be provided by the instructor.


Select an article or two from professional journals of social psychology. Write a critical review of each article about 2 pages in length, typed, double spaced. The critical review(s) should outline the important ideas in the article and discuss why you think the article makes a significant contribution to our knowledge of social psychology. In particular, points will be assigned for discussion on the background for the studies, a description of the studies themselves, their results, their contributions to the field of social psychology, and a critical assessment of the worth of the studies. Do NOT assume that the instructor has read the article when writing the term paper. Professional journals in social psychology include Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, Basic and Applied Social Psychology, and many others. Unfortunately, the Long Beach City College library does not have a good collection of journals in Social Psychology. Good collections of professional journals of Social Psychology can be found at the Cal State Long Beach library and most other libraries at 4-year colleges. If you have any questions on what is and is not a professional journal of social psychology, make sure to consult with the instructor. Students may do two critical reviews, and each is worth 8 points toward the grade on an extra credit basis. This assignment is due on Monday, May 8, 2006.

Students are advised to keep duplicate copies of their critical reviews and all other written materials.

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