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â€œAccording to Saul Kassin (2017), the process of perceiving persons based on â€œsocial perception includes attribution, social cognition,â€ and impression â€œformation.â€ Also, it is the process of understanding social events and social objects,â€ give meaning â€œtoâ€ events, as well as the processing of information about these events and objects. This process helps to find organization; choosing responses/reactions to them, and choosing the best strategy for using information efficiently, a prediction about future behaviors/reactions, and finally how to anticipate a response while maintaining control.â€
â€œIn our reading in chapters two and five, the â€œAttribution Theoryâ€ (Saul Kassin, 2017) is â€œa group of theories that describe how people explain the causes of behavior.â€ There is an attribution to the internal characteristics of an actor, such as ability, personality, mood, or effort. Kassin (2017), states that â€œattribution biasesâ€ happen when â€œwe are often too quick to attribute the behavior of other people to something personal about them rather than something about their situation. This theory is a classic example of the general human tendency of underestimating how important the social situation is in determining behavior. We are too likely to make strong personal attributions to account for the behavior that we observe others engaging in.â€ (Saul Kassin, 2017)
In my profession as a counselor, human services worker understanding the danger of pre-conceived perceptions can endanger clients, individuals, group members, or even strangers that I might encounter that it is best not to â€œjudge a book by its cover.â€ I have been guilty of this in the past, and I hurt someoneâ€™s feelings by judging based on state, city location, and my perception of home, life, and finances. The relationship was repaired, and I learned a valuable lesson.
I feel that law enforcement officers have perception biases when encountering specific groups of people, namely black and brown individuals. I have talked with those in my community as well as the many officers, detectives, and FBI agents in my family and church family. I feel I can see both sides of the shootings of black males and the officers who uphold their oath to protect and serve. I think it is incumbent for police chiefs to have their officers to go through training to help recognize their biases and if they cannot control themselves, they should not be serving on the force. I know how it feels to be riding in a car with a police officer or FBI agent off duty and be stopped in Washington, DC, just because he is black, driving a Mercedes Benz, or Cadillac Escalade in predominantly white neighborhoods and many cases, it is where they live. I have been with a group of ministers on our way to a church function and stopped because of our mode of transportation and the color of our skin. My Pastor and his daughter have been profiled because of a perception of their heritage or culture (i.e., Muslims). With police, I feel it is perception bias that is taught and more prevalent from 2008 to the present. (E. Ashby Plant, 2005)
E. Ashby Plant, B. M. (2005). Psychological Science. The Consequences of Race for Police Officers’ Responses to Criminal Suspects, volume 16, issue 3, pages 180â€“183.
Saul Kassin, S. F. (2017). Social Psychology, 10th Edition. Boston, MA, Canada: Cengage Learning.
- Examine the process of perceiving persons, emphasizing attribution and attribution biases.
- Assess how understanding these concepts may help you in your profession.
Then, in your post, discuss how these factors may impact judgments made during police shootings of black males.
Whatever the topic â€“ crime, world politics, sports, business, entertainment, or personal events closer to home â€“ we are all engaged and interested participants in social perception (Kassin, 2017). Gaze is a vital component of human interaction (Harrison, Binetti, Coutrot, Johnston, Mareschal, 2018). The way we look at people with our eyes, and how long we look at them, tends to determine our perception rather quickly of most individuals and situations. One of the most exciting developments of the past decade is the discovery that our perception of other individuals involves neurons and brain areas that were thought to be reserved for the control of our own actions and the experience of our own emotions (Keysers, Kaas, & Gazzola, 2010).
People have a tendency to perceive black men as larger and more threatening than similarly sized white men, according to research published by the American Psychological Association (APA, 2017). This falls in line with a study that was conducted to identify bias actions by law enforcement officers. The computer simulated study revealed that law enforcement officers more readily shot at Black individuals (armed or unarmed) as compared to White individuals. With repeated exposure to stimuli in which race is unrelated to the presence of a gun can eliminate race bias (Plant and Peruche, 2005). This computer simulation should become part of mandatory training for law enforcement officers. Most are bias due to simple statistics. According to the NAACP, African Americans are incarcerated at more than 5 times the rate of whites. The imprisonment rate for African American women is twice that of white women. Though African Americans and Hispanics make up approximately 32% of the US population, they comprised 56% of all incarcerated people in 2015 (NAACP, 2018).
Multiculturalism and social perception is an extensive area covered in any field of psychology. These two subjects need to be mandated for all professions that work in public service. Unfortunately some individuals do not recognize a bias or may deny having one toward a particular culture or race. Psychology professionals need to lobby for further training for all levels of law enforcement in order for them to be education in self evaluation and reflection. The knowledge of multiculturalism and social perception is very poor among law enforcement officers.
American psychological association; people see black men as larger, more threatening than same-sized white men. (2017, Apr 02). NewsRx Health Retrieved from http://library.capella.edu/login?qurl=https%3A%2F%2Fsearch.proquest.com%2Fdocview%2F1880089140%3Faccountid%3D2796
Charlotte Harrison, Nicola Binetti, Antoine Coutrot, Alan Johnston, and Isabelle Mareschal. (2018). Personality Traits Do Not Predict How We Look at Faces. Perception. https://doi-org.library.capella.edu/10.1177/0301006618788754
Plant and Peruche’s 2005 article “The Consequences of Race for Police Officers’ Responses to Criminal Suspects” inPsychological Science, volume 16, issue 3, pages 180â€“183.
Kassin, S. (2017). Social Psychology, 10th Edition. [Vitalsource]. Retrieved fromhttps://online.vitalsource.com/#/books/97813375095…
Keysers, C., Kaas, J. H., & Gazzola, V. (2010). Somatosensation in social perception. Nature Reviews.Neuroscience, 11(6), 417-28. doi:http://dx.doi.org.library.capella.edu/10.1038/nrn2…
When I assess the roots of prejudice, discrimination, racism, and sexism, I find that the roots of all four of them are based on faulty belief systems. I find that prejudice and sexism are similar. They are usually bias attitudes toward members of a group of people, or a gender, that is filled with stereotypes, and are coupled with negative emotions. Although, a person may be prejudice or sexist, they may not discriminate. Discrimination is when a person acts in a negative way based on their prejudice or sexist beliefs. Racism involves prejudice and discrimination against someone of a different race based a belief in race supremacy and that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race. As a result, racism tries to believe other races are inferior to theirs, or their race being superior to another race.
When I compare and contrast two or more theories that could be applied to reduce prejudice, discrimination, or sexism in your professional setting. I must first realize that prejudice, discrimination, sexism and racism may be based on fear of the unfamiliarity. Therefore, I will consider the theory of intergroup contact because when there is association with other groups, it may reduce negative attitudes towards others and promote inclusivity in the group.
Kassin, S., Fein, S., & Markus, H. R. (2017). Social psychology (10th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage. ISBN: 9781305580220.
Assess the roots of prejudice, discrimination, racism, and sexism.
The root of prejudice, discrimination, racism, and sexism stems from a person’s racial background, or institutional, or cultural practices of a group dominating one racial group over another (Kassin 2017). It can be looked at as coming from the family background of how a person grows up to determine the root of prejudice, discrimination, racism, and even sexism. When you think about it, it is something that a person learns than something that one is born with as some would think. For example, when you look at the social psychology of prejudice and discrimination, it deals with the negative attitudes vs. the unfair behavior or treatment of others (Dion 2001). This deals with the idea of self-esteem playing a role in terms of how people judge others. You have races that feel they are superior than others, which could be based on how family history has shown situations where they believe that this is true. Dion (2001) has created a study that use the stress model. This model shows how a person can show themselves as a target to prejudice and discrimination and cause much stress in their life. In an article by Orr (2003) when looking at the factor of racism that can exist, it is based on a fundamental problems that can occur in a person. All of these problem roots for a dislike towards a person or a group is centered around the lack of education and ignorance that can be displayed.
Compare and contrast two or more theories that could be applied to reduce prejudice, discrimination, or sexism in your professional setting.
One theory that I have found in order to reduce prejudice would be to use a contact hypothesis within my professional setting as a teacher. By using this method, direct contact between hostile groups will reduce intergroup prejudice under certain conditions (Kassin 2017). Ther are four key factors that must be displayed in order to overcome prejudice. This is an equal status, personal interaction, cooperative activities, and social norms (Kassin 2017). Being able to have these things, I believe, develops a level of getting to know one another and develop some form of common ground.
Another theory that could be applied to my professional setting would be to develop social cognitive factors such as intergroup friendships and extended contact. By doing this, children are able to establish relationships outside of their prejudice mindset be it racial or socioeconomic status.
The positive side of being able to use these two methods is to establish a personal relationship with each other. You are able to see the likes and dislikes among those around you. Also, the ability to gain an understanding when it comes to learning the idea that even though people are different, they can still share the same ideas, goals, and plans. The contrast side to this is that you will be more to deal with those that are catered to your environmental status or lifestyle. Also, the issue of becoming closed minded when it comes to the difference that are seen among others.
Kassin, S., Fein, S., & Markus, H.R. (2017). Social Psychology. 10th edition. Cengage Learning: Boston, MA
Orr, D. (2003). We must stop ignoring the roots of racism. The Independent. London, UK
Dion, K. (2001). The social psychology of perceived prejudice and discrimination. Canadian Psychology.43:1
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