Welcome!

Welcome to the Social Experience blog for Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad.

To help you recognize how you experience social psychology (the phenomenon we will be studying in class) on a daily basis, you will be required write a social psychology blog.  During the course of the semester, I want you write about everyday examples of social psychology.  You may write about just about anything that you encounter in your everyday life: news articles, advertisements, advice columns, photographs, cartoons, etc.  You may also use quotes from books or talks, or a description of an experience you had personally or witnessed.  For example, you may wish to describe a scene from a movie or television show.  As you can see there are many ways, in which you may encounter social psychology in your daily life.  Your blog should consist of one entry for the material covered (either lecture or book) each class period and a description of a social norm violation (total 14 entries).   Your blog entry will be due by midnight of the night the topic was covered.

REGISTER FOR A WORDPRESS.COM ACCOUNT:

You will need to register for a WordPress account before you are able to contribute your own posts to this blog. You do NOT have to create your own personal blog on WordPress, just register for an account and username (if you do not already have one you wish to use). Follow this link to register: https://en.wordpress.com/signup/?user=1.  Once you have registered for an WordPress account, please inform us by email (psychology350@gmail.com) using the same email address you used when registering for your WordPress account. We will then send you an invitation to contribute to this social psychology blog.  When you receive the invitation to contribute, you will have 2 options. Please click on the 2nd option (“Accept Invitation”).

The blog address is: https://psychology350.wordpress.com/. When you contribute a post or comment, please include your name. It would be most helpful for grading purposes if you include your name in the title of your posts or in the text of your comments. Although your username may be your actual name or something close to it, sometimes it isn’t possible or ideal to have your actual name as a username so we ask that you make it easy for us to identify.

FORMAT:

  1. Title:  Please give a unique title to your entry and include your name. (e.g. “Introduction to Social Psychology” by John Smith)
  2. Introduction: Your opening section should clearly identify (bold, underline) the aspect of the chapter of which your entry exemplifies (be specific—vague topics rather than specific concepts will not receive credit).  Describe what this concept means so that the reader can understand.  This should be the definition of the concept in your own words (do not simply copy the definition out of the book). 3 points
  3. Link and/ or Descriptive: The body of your entry should include a description of the encounter you had with the concept.  This should be either a written description or a link to an original source for which your entry is based upon  (e.g., a link to a photo, video clip, news article, etc). 2 points
  4. Conclusion: You should close your entry by describing how the encounter illustrates the phenomenon you have identified in your introduction (this section may well comprise the bulk of your entry).  5 points

EXAMPLES:

Incidents: An entry describing an incident you experienced corresponding to the material for Chapter 2, “The Self in a Social World,” might address the issue of the self-serving bias.  You would include in your introduction a definition of the phenomenon.  In the body of your entry, you might include a description of a discussion you had with your roommate about how much more housework you do than s/he does.  In your conclusion, you would explain to me why this incident is an example of the self-serving bias.

Media: A media item entry can consist of an actual link (article, cartoon, advertisements, etc) or a description of a scene from a television show or movie.  The author of the textbook uses many cartoons and examples to exemplify phenomenon that you can look to for examples (these are, of course, off limits for your blog).  If allowed by the source, attach the original to your blog entry.  If the original source cannot be attached, simply include a written description of it.  With each media entry the format should remain the same as above.  For example, you may submit a Far Side cartoon that exemplifies the self-serving bias.  You would attach the cartoon to your entry.  You would state that the cartoon is an example of the self-serving bias, give your definition, then discuss how the cartoon is an example of the self-serving bias.

SOCIAL NORM VIOLATION:

In addition to your entries for each chapter you will be required to violate some social norm and then to discuss your experience (social norms are covered in chapter 5, “Genes, Culture, and Gender”).  A social norm is some rule of expected behavior in our society.  PLEASE use good judgment.  Do NOT do something that violates legal or moral norms (or anything that could potentially harm you or another person).   If you have any questions whether or not it is in good judgment please consult me.  Your “violation” should be fairly minor–just enough to make you a little uncomfortable when you violate the norm.   A good example may be a norm of personal space.  You could sit right next to a complete stranger even though there are many available seats farther away.  You may wish to stand very close to someone while talking.  This portfolio entry should include a description of the norm you violated, how you violated it, how others reacted to your violation, and how it felt to violate the norm.  This can be posted at any time during the semester but no later than the last day of class.

BLOG COMMENTS:

In addition, you must add thoughtful comments on other students’ blog posts at least 4 times during the semester. Here are my suggestions for how to start a respectful comment:

I see where you’re coming from, but I disagree because…

I agree with you on _______, but not necessarily on ________

What do you think of ________ as another example / possibility?

Do you think your example may also illustrate ________?  Here’s why I think it might apply…

Ok, these examples may be a little cheesy, but it is very important to show respect for your classmates, even in an online forum.  Offensive / disrespectful comments will have consequences.  That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t demonstrate critical thinking.  Your comments should demonstrate that you’ve thought about concept.  Thus, these comments should also be more than a couple sentences long.

GRADING:

Your blog assignment is worth 150 points.  Each entry will be worth 10 points (3 points for your definition, 2 points for the example, and 5 for your description of how it is an example of the psychology principle).   Each comment will be worth 2.5 points.  Thus, your entries plus your comments will be worth 150 points.

We look forward to a great semester with you and hope you enjoy your in-class and online experience!

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