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Social Psychology 

Social psychology is the part of psychology in which we look at the behavior of individuals within groups. We are interested in the individual's behavior while sociologists study the group as a whole. It can be difficult to separate at times since there can be crossover.

It is a broad field, as have been many of the other topics. Social psychology, though, is an especially broad sub-area and encompasses many topics. There is little agreement about what introduction to psychology students should study in social psychology.

We will look at issues related to the power of the situation such as norms or the rules of behavior prescribed by various cultures and the consequences of violating those norms. Think of your office which is a culture. What are the norms of behavior? What happens if someone violates those? The television show Candid Camera is all about violation of social norms.
 
Those in marketing will be interested the research on attitudes and behavior. How do we persuade people to change their behavior?

Another segment of social psychology focuses on issues such as altruism, aggression and prejudice. Those topics are related to the work on attitudes but altruism, in particular, is also relevant to the chapter on social development.

Ultimately we look to social psychologists for insight in why we behave as we do when we are in groups. If these topics interest you, think about the course in social psychology in which we explore them in more detail.