AP Psychology : Behavioral Phenomena in a Group

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP Psychology

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Example Questions

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Example Question #1 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

The reduction of a sense of responsibility when individuals are in a group is called __________.

Possible Answers:

displacement

diffusion of responsibility

psychodynamic

the bystander effect

selective attention

Correct answer:

diffusion of responsibility

Explanation:

Members of a group will often feel less inclined to do something about a situation; the larger the group, the less an individual will feel a sense of responsibility to take charge. This is called a "diffusion of responsibility" and is thought to be responsible for the "bystander effect", which describes the unwillingness to offer help if others are present and are also not offering help. The distinction is small, but important.

Example Question #2 : Social Psychology

Milgram's famous shock experiment demanded obedience from its participants and demonstrated the existence of what psychological phenomena? 

Possible Answers:

The power of reinforcement 

The power of peer pressure 

The power of authority

The power of social learning 

The power of motivation 

Correct answer:

The power of authority

Explanation:

Even though many participants felt that they were causing a great deal of pain to the person that they were shocking, they continued to use higher voltage simply because the test administrater told them to. This experiment demonstrated the power that presumed authority has over people's actions and decisions. 

Example Question #3 : Social Psychology

Which two factors are most closely related to the bystander effect?

Possible Answers:

Persuasion and obedience

In-group bias and social influence

Diffusion of responsibility and social influence

Conformity and obedience

Diffusion of responsibility and in-group bias

Correct answer:

Diffusion of responsibility and social influence

Explanation:

The bystander effect suggests that the more people who witness someone in distress, the less likely someone is to intervene. Diffusion of responsibility refers to the phenomenon such that when there are multiple people present, each individual feels less of a responsibility for the situation. Social influence refers to the effect that seeing other people not acting causes you to be less likely to act.

Example Question #2 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

Which term describes the tendency for groups to make more extreme decisions than individuals?

Possible Answers:

Groupthink

Conformity

Prejudice

Group polarization

Group harmonization

Correct answer:

Group polarization

Explanation:

Group polarization occurs when a group makes a more extreme decision than its individual members would have made if acting on their own. 

Example Question #3 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

Which of the following traits is NOT typical of people attracted to cults?

Possible Answers:

Fear of change

Loneliness

Belief in human perfection

Romantic ideas of utopia

Frustration with their current lives

Correct answer:

Fear of change

Explanation:

Because joining a cult often requires a dramatic shift in one's behavior and philosophies, people who are reluctant to disrupt their own status quo are less likely to join a cult, no matter how enticing their recruiters' promises may be.

Example Question #4 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

Which of the following factors will inhibit a person's desire to act altruistically?

Possible Answers:

All of these will inhibit altruistic behavior.

Apathy

Fear of exposing self to potential injury

Fear of exposing self to humiliation

Ambiguity in a situation

Correct answer:

All of these will inhibit altruistic behavior.

Explanation:

Each factor listed introduces the possibility of harm to a potential actor, be it a minor inconvenience or a greater physical threat, making them more reluctant to aid someone else.

Example Question #5 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

An act of aggression that is designed to meet some end goal is an example of which phenomenon? 

Possible Answers:

Selfishness 

Instrumental aggression

Confirmation bias 

Hostile aggression 

Self-serving bias 

Correct answer:

Instrumental aggression

Explanation:

Instrumental aggression is an act of aggression that is designed to meet a particular goal. This act could be made at the individual or societal level. A good example would be particular wars in which countries fought over food, water, or other resources needed or wanted to maintain their society. This is different from hostile aggression, which could be random with no specific cause or end goal. 

Example Question #6 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

Which of the following factors is most likely to cause an individual to conform their opinion to match that of a group?

Possible Answers:

None of these

The topic in discussion bears personal meaning to the individual

The group's view contradicts to the religious beliefs of the individual

The presence of an authority figure, even if the authority figure does not give a personal opinion

The individual has not yet voiced their opinions, though others have been given a chance to speak

Correct answer:

The individual has not yet voiced their opinions, though others have been given a chance to speak

Explanation:

Solomon Asch is most well-known for his social psychology studies on conformity. Individuals are most likely to conform when they are in a group. Social normative refers to the influence other people have on an individual that leads to conformity, driven by a desire to fit in. If an individual has not yet voiced their opinions, they are also more likely to conform to a group's view. Outside influences such as these have a major impact on conformity.

Example Question #7 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

Which of the following does not increase deindividuation?

Possible Answers:

Large group size

Being provided with identical uniforms

Diffused responsibility

Anonymity

Having personal ties to the victimized party

Correct answer:

Having personal ties to the victimized party

Explanation:

Deindividuation is the process whereby individuals show a loss of restraint and individuality due to their being in a group. Having personal ties to a victimized party would decrease deindividuation, while all of the other answer choices facilitate "losing" oneself to a larger group identity. 

Example Question #8 : Behavioral Phenomena In A Group

Which of the following examples describes social loafing?

Possible Answers:

Judy tries very hard to impress her colleagues. 

Joey refuses to engage in social activities that seem elementary to him.

Jacquie refuses to change her mind to conform to group ideals.

After meeting with NRA executives, Jaymes decides to support every person's right to bear arms.

Johnny tries harder on an individual project than he does on a group project.

Correct answer:

Johnny tries harder on an individual project than he does on a group project.

Explanation:

Social loafing is a phenomenon whereby some people exert less effort when working in groups as opposed to when they are working individually. Obviously, the option describing Johnny doing exactly that is the best answer.

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