Social Psychology

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Social Psychology

Social psychology is the scientific study of how people's thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are influenced by the actual, imagined, or implied presence of others. By this definition, scientific refers to the empirical method of investigation. The terms thoughts, feelings, and behaviors include all of the psychological variables that are measurable in a human being. The statement that others may be imagined or implied suggests that we are prone to social influence even when no other people are present, such as when watching television, or following internalized cultural norms.

Social psychologists typically explain human behavior as a result of the interaction of mental states and immediate social situations. In Kurt Lewin's conceptual formula, behavior can be viewed as a function of the person in the environment, B = f(P , E). In general, social psychologists have a preference for laboratory based, empirical findings. Social psychology theories tend to be specific and focused, rather than global and general.

Social psychology is an interdisciplinary domain that bridges the gap between psychology and sociology. During the years immediately following World War II, there was frequent collaboration between psychologists and sociologists. However, the two disciplines have become increasingly specialized and isolated from each other in recent years, with sociologists focusing on "macro variables" (e.g. social structure) to a much greater extent. Nevertheless, sociological approaches to social psychology remain an important counterpart to psychological research in this area.

In addition to the split between psychology and sociology, there has been a somewhat less pronounced difference in emphasis between American social psychologists and European social psychologists. As a broad generalization, American researchers traditionally have focused more on the individual, whereas Europeans have paid more attention to group level phenomena. See Group dynamics.

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Social Psychology Scholarships

Name Amount Deadline
Howard Nemerov Writing Scholarship $3,000 January 15, 2017
Hugo du Coudray Blue Denim Scholarship $2,000 February 01, 2017
Walter Jones Memorial Scholarship $2,000 November 01, 2016
William Randolph Hearst Endowed Fellowship for Minority Students Up to $4,000 November 22, 2016
Daniel K. Kuzuhara Hope Center Scholarship $1,100 November 16, 2016
Rob McCarvel Memorial Scholarship $1,000 February 01, 2017
Girls Impact the World Film Festival Scholarship Up to $5,000 January 20, 2017
Eugene F. Wiesner Endowed Scholarship $700 February 01, 2017
Wendell Wood Memorial Scholarship $500 November 01, 2016
Michael Baring-Gould Memorial Scholarship $500 February 15, 2017