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the field of force in human behavior is the social situation. A person's attributes interact with the situation to produce the resulting behavior. The main situational influences on our behavior are the actions and the presence of other people.

kurt Lewins Field of Forces Theory

concept that helps explain why circumstances that appear unimportant on the surface can have great consequences for behavior. Can also guide behavior in a particular direction by making it easier to follow one path rather another one

channel factors

the tendency for observers, when analyzing another's behavior, to underestimate the impact of the situation and to overestimate the impact of personal disposition (values, beliefs, and personality traits)

fundamental attribution error

ways for the brain to infer missing parts of a picture when a picture is incomplete

Gestalt principles

idea that objects are not perceived by some automatic registering device but by active, non-conscious interpretation of what the object represents as a whole

Gestalt Psychology

the claim that the way things are is the way they should be ex: feeling envy is natural so there is nothing wrong with feeling envy

naturalistic fallacy

stored information that is used to help in understanding the social and physical world


the process of explaining one's own behavior and the behavior of others


the tendency to believe, after learning an outcome, that one would have predicted it

hindsight bias

the extent to which the results of a study can be generalized to other situations and to other people

external validity

confidence that only the manipulated variable could have produced the results, no external factors

internal validity

consistency of measurement


a statistical statement of how likely it is that an obtained result occurred by chance

statistical significance

Research that examines the relationships between variables and how two variables change together.

correlational research

people define themselves as a collective, place less importance on individual freedom or personal control

interdependent culture

a culture in which people tend to think of themselves as distinct social entities, tied to each other by voluntary bonds of affection and organizational memberships but essentially separate from other people and having attributes that exist in the absence of any connection to others

independent culture

the stories we tell about our social self

narrated self

an image of yourself based on what you believe others think of you

looking glass self

the act of comparing oneself to people who are better off

upward comparison

Explore key concepts related to the influence of social situations on human behavior, such as the interaction between personal attributes and situational factors, the impact of others' presence and actions, and the tendency to underestimate the role of the situation in behavior analysis.

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