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Flashcards in Chapter 8 Deck (32)
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Stereotypes are

  • a special type of social knowledge structure or social belief. They represent socially shared beliefs about characteristics and behaviors about a particular social group 
  • To often they are applied in ways that underestimate the potential of the person we are observing


The age-based double standard

  • is operating when an individual attributes an older person's failure in memory as more serious than a memory failure in a young adult 
  • Example, an older person forgets the name of a movie title whereas a younger person also forgets, but perhaps this causes the older person to  miss an opportunity based on cultural savvy
  • Memory competence is the most susceptible area to negative stereotypes and affects people's perception of older people's competence 

  • In the same example of forgetfulness, they might also have the stereotype that the older person is more responsible 


Implicit stereotyping

  • is the activation of strong stereotypes, which are automatic and unconscious


Implicit attitude test

  • Categorize photos in terms of if the person is young or old
  • Press a button on right if young and on left if old
  • Then categorize pleasant and unpleasant with one hand each
  • Right is associated with young and pleasant
  • Then part 2: they switch the hands with the theory that if you have implicit stereotypes, your responses will be slower
  • This is because it becomes difficult to use right hand to associate pleasant if you need to associate it with old
  • Findings were that people of all ages were faster to respond to young and pleasant
  • All individuals tested had implicit age attitudes that strongly favored the young over the old


Stereotype threat

  • is an evoked fear of being judged in accordance with a negative stereotype about a group to which you belong 
  • If you are part of a minority then you are more vulnerable
  • For example if you are a black female from the inner city public school system, you may be viewed as less intelligent, which may actually cause you to perform poorly on an exam (my example)
  • In older adults it may contribute to decline in cognitive functioning 

  • Sardinians perform better on memory tasks as an example were stereotype threat works in their favor 

  • Older adults who had a more positive view of themselves as aging individuals tended to be healthier over time than those who held a negative self-perception of aging 


Social knowledge structures and social beliefs are defined in terms

social scripts

Like a script as to how you should act when you go to the dentists office


what drives social judgement for OA 

  • When encountering specific situations, belief system triggers an emotional reaction and related goals tied to the content of the situation, which in turn drives social judgment 


Self-perception of aging

  • refers to individual's perception of their own age and aging
  • How you think about it affects the outcome


Labeling theory

  • argues when we confront an age related stereotype, older adults are more likely to integrate it into their self-perception


Resilience theory 

  • argues confronting a negative stereotype results in a rejection of that view in favor of a more positive self-perception
  • Comes from peoples desire to distance themselves from the negative stereotype
  • Louis


Impression formation

  • is the way we form and revise first impressions about others
  • When they go from bad to good, old people modify their impression less

  • so the initial impression holds stronger

  • In contrast, younger adults make their impression on the most recent information they have


negative bias 

  • occurs when people allow their initial negative impressions to stand despite subsequent positive information because negative information was more striking to them and thus affected them more strongly
  • older adults rely on preeisting social structures 
  • OA weigh neg info heavier than younger adults 
  • OA use less detailed info in forming impressions 


social knowledge Access depends on: 



Older people rely on easily accessible information such as initial impressions

Strength of information stored in memory (if you have a lot of experience wit people who are narcissistic, then you'll have an easier time accessing that) 





source judgements: 

  • when they try to determine the source of a particular piece of information
  • Older adults rely on more easily accessible information for source judgements
  • Older adults make more social judgement biases because they have trouble distinguishing between true and false information 

  • So they are more likely to believe in misleading information such as the ones in TRUMPS campaign (Renny) 


Describe the processing capacity explanation for age differences in social judgement biases


  • In our minds we revise initial decisions and if we don't have the processing power, or we are distracted by other things then we can't deal with it so we tend to be biased as older people


how does processing context influence social judgement 

age related changes in processing =

older adults tend to make more snap judgements because of processing resource limitations 


Causal attributions 

  • are explanations of why behaviors occur


Dispositional attribution

  • is a causal attribution that concludes the cause resides within the actor
  • eg: John is anxious so he messed up
  • OA display mor edispositional bias 


Situational attribution

  • is and explanation that the cause resides outside of hte actor
  • John's job is putting a lot of demands on him, so that's why he missed the opportunity to succeed


Correspondence bias (fundamenatal attribution error) 

  • information distortions when making causal attributions about problem solving
  • a propensity to lean on blaming people using dispositional attribution rather than situational
  • Younger people tend to rely on dispositional attribution more: I didn't get the grant because that musician doesn't like me.
  • Later in life you say oh the odds were 1 in 20 so that is more situational disposition


what happens to personal goals

  • Change to match our needs across a lifespan
  • In youth school and career vs later balancing with family
  • Older people tend to shift to physical health and socio-emotional domains


what happens to Emotion goals

Become increasingly salient and important as we grow older (given limited time left) 


positivity effect:

  • older adult avoid negative information and focus more on positive information when making decisions and judgements and when remembering events
  • Draw back of focussing only on positive is that they can miss out on important negative information necessary to make quality decisions


Cognitive style is 

  • how we approach problem solving
  • OA:

  • the need for closure

  • intolerance for ambiguity

  • order and predictability


Personal control 

  • is the degree one believes one's performance in a situation depends on something that one personally does
  • High = more control low = less
  • Plays a role in memory performance, intelligence, depression
  • It is multi-dimensional
  • No change in sense of self-control in health matters up to early 70s
  • In 70s and 80s, sense of control over health declines
  • Positive beliefs are associated with lower stress
  • Sardinians who had a higher sense of personal-control
  • More personal control is linked with better quality of social relationships, health, higher cognitive functioning


Control strategies



  • Assimilative Actvities 
  • Accommodation
  • Immunizing mechanisms
  • Primary control strategies
  • Secondary control strategies


Assimilative Activities

  •  prevent or alleviate losses in domains that are personally relevant for self-esteem and identity
  • People use memory aids more if memory is what they take pride in



  • and readjust their goals and aspirations as a way to lessen or neutralize the effects of negative self-evaluation in key domains
  • Used to swim 20 laps, now 10 to feel as good about ones self


Immunizing mechanisms 

  • alter the effect of self-discrepant evidence
  • Deny the fact that your memory is going down hill or look for alternative explanations


Primary control strategies

  • involve bringing the environment in line with one's goals
  • If you lost your monthly gig, you'd look for another
  • change the environment to match one's goals