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Study Guidelines for Stage 2 Psychology Exam

Introduction to Psychology

Level of Explanation in psychology


o Biological
o

Basic Processes

Personal

Socio-Cultural

The 3 types of investigation


o Experimental
o

Quantitative Observational

Qualitative

Limitations and strengths of each.

The three methods of assessing psychological responses (DATA)


o objective quantitative measures (e.g. physiological measures such as heart rate, behavioural counts,
and scores on standardised intelligence tests),
o subjective quantitative measures (e.g. responses on checklists and rating scales, and scores on
personality tests)
o qualitative assessment of data; content analysis of responses in focus groups;

awareness of the limitations of drawing conclusions using small or unrepresentative samples; and consideration
validity and reliability of the methods

The ways in which quantitative data may be represented and described.


o determining medians and means
o generating graphical representations of data
o interpreting medians, means, standard deviations; and graphical representations of data.
Ethical issues associated with investigations
Psychological harm, Confidentiality, Voluntary participation, Right to withdraw, Professional Conduct, Accurate
Reporting, Deception and Debriefing

Social Cognition

The structure of attitudes


o ABC Model of attitudes

And the functions they serve


o Adaptive/utilitarian/adjustive

self /value expressive

ego defensive

knowledge

The factors that influence attitude formation


o Attitude strength (direct/indirect experience)
o

Attitude specificity

Attitude accessibility

Ambivalence

Social situation (behaviour affects attitude (Cognitive Dissonance, Festinger 1957)

Self Perception Theory (Bem 1967)

attitude change
o source
o

message

audience,

channel and

the bidirectional relationship between attitudes and behaviour (cognitive dissonance)


the factors that influence impression formation
o verbal
o

peripheral and central processing routes

non verbal (visual and paralinguistic)

self-knowledge from social comparisons


o upward
o

downward

similar

impression management
Psychological principles concerning social cognition in everyday experiences and events (e.g. meeting a new
person, or advertising) and in psychological interventions, including public safety campaigns that target attitude
change
o The application of these psychological principles to social issues
o

E.g.reducing prejudice

or increasing the effectiveness of health-promotion campaigns) and personal growth (e.g. more
effective persuasive communication and impression management)
Investigation designs and methods of assessing psychological responses used to study social cognition
Ethical issues associated with research and applications in the area of social cognition
o

Learning
Components in classical conditioning
o unconditioned and conditioned stimuli
o

Components in operant conditioning


o positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, punishment, schedules of reinforcement, and
preparedness
o the importance of timing in classical and operant conditioning (contiguity and contingency
o

unconditioned and conditioned responses

stimulus generalisation, stimulus discrimination, and extinction;

the factors that influence learning through observation; and the distinction between the acquisition and performance
of a learned response
Psychological principles concerning learning in everyday experiences and events
o (e.g. coin deposit incentives to return shopping trolleys, customer loyalty programs, classical
conditioning in advertising, and
Explicit and implicit observational learning from television programs
Psychological interventions, including behaviour modification and the systematic desensitisation of phobias
o The application of these psychological principles to social issues (e.g. reducing criminal behaviour,
and increasing recycling) and personal growth (e.g. overcoming ones own annoying habits)
Investigation designs and methods for assessing psychological responses used to study learning
Ethical issues associated with research and applications in the area of learning

Personality

Psychodynamic, humanistic, and trait theories of personality; and the main forms of personality assessment used
today, including standardised self-report inventories, clinical interviews, and behavioural observations
Psychological principles concerning personality in everyday experiences and events (e.g. character depictions in the
popular media) and in psychological interventions, including assertiveness training
Application of these psychological principles to social issues (e.g.
o personality disorders,
o

the relationship between personality and learning styles

culture and personality

personal growth

Investigation designs and methods for assessing psychological responses used to study personality, including
validity and reliability
Ethical issues associated with research and applications in the area of personality