Social Psychology:

James Neill

Centre for Applied Psychology

University of Canberra

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Learning Objective

Attitudes - Definition

Attitudes - Definition

An attitude is an association between an object of thought and a valenced evaluation (+ve or -ve) with 3 components:

Attitudes - Questions

Attitude - Dimensions

Attitudes can vary along several dimensions, including:

Attitudes - Change

Factors in changing attitudes:

Can Attitudes Predict Behaviour?

Can Attitudes Predict Behaviour?


Components of Persuasion

Components of Persuasion

Processes of Persuasion

2 routes by which to alter attitudes:

  • Classical conditioning of an object with an emotional response
  • Simple repetition of a message can alter attitude change
  • Cognitive Dissonance

    Cognitive Dissonance

    Cognitive Dissonance - Example


    Attitude Dimensions

    Attitudes (or components of attitudes) can vary along a number of dimensions, including:


    Lewis, V. (2004). Social Thinking. Powerpoint presentation to Psychology 102. Canberra: University of Canberra.

    Myers, D. G. (2001). Social Psychology (Ch. 18). In D. G. Myers (2001). Psychology (6th ed.) (pp. 643-688). New York: Worth.

    Westen, D., Burton, L., & Kowalski, R. (2006). Psychology. Australian and New Zealand Edition. Queensland: Wiley.