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You are the principal of a new school. The school will serve children from very diverse racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds. You're worried that problems of prejudice, and subsequent intergroup conflict and aggression, might arise amongst the children. Based on your knowledge of the origins of prejudice and aggression, according to psychological theories you've learned in lecture or in the text, what steps could you take to minimize these problems? (Principles from any or all of the sections on evolutionary psychology, aggression, or prejudice might be useful; also feel free to bring in principles from earlier in the term, if relevant. Don't simply say what you'd do; justify why you'd do it, based on the theories and concepts you've learned in the course. Use the terms explicitly, and make it very clear from your examples that you understand what the terms mean.)
As always, the assignment should be 1-1/2 to 2 pages (no more than 3). Put the terms, concepts, and theories in bold, the first time you use them.
Refer to following book back for other principles from other sections that may apply:
Myers, D. G. & Smith, S. M. (2015). Exploring social psychology (4th Cdn. Ed.). Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson.
• Aggression: Physical or verbal behavior intended to hurt someone
o Ex: slaps, direct insults, gossip
• Hostile aggression: aggression with the aim of injuring someone driven by anger
o Ex: angry at someone for cutting you off in traffic
o Murders (conflict w. friend/ family)
• Instrumental aggression: aggression that provides a means to an end
o Ex: wars + terrorist acts
o Strategic tool used in conflict
• Biology clearly doe sinfluence behaviour just as nurture works upon nature. Our experiences interact w. the nervous system engineered by our genes
• Lorenz saw aggression as adaptive rathr self-destructive (innate mechanisms for inhibiting aggression)
• Study by Raines + Colleagues found that prefrontal cortex 14% (emergency brake on deeper brain areas in voled in aggressive behaviour) less active than normal in the non-abused murderers and 15% smaller in antisocial men.
• Identical twins when asked separately more likely than fraternal twins to agree on whether they hve a "violent temper" or have gotten into fights
o Temparaments(how intense + reactive we are) partly brought with us into the world, influenced by our sympathetic nervous system's reactivity
o Person's temparent in infancy usually endures (person not aggressive at 8; typically same at 48)
• Frustration: The blockoing of goal-directed behaviour
• Displacement: the redirection of aggression to a target other than source of the frustration. Generally, the new target is a safer or more socially acceptable target
• Relative deprivation: the perception that you are less well-off than others with who you compare yourself
o Has been used to explain why nations w. large economic inequalities tend to have lower happiness and higher cvrime rates than countries w. smaller inequalities
Ex: getta A- on exam, but hear class avg was A (disappointing)
• Social learning theory: the theory that we learn social behaviour by observing and imitating, and by being rewarded and punished
• Crowding: a subjective feeling that there is not enough space per person
• Catharsis: a belief derived from instinct theories of aggression, that acting out violently will reduce the need or desire to be violent
• Prejudice: a negative attitude toward a group. Typically considered the affective component of outgroup bias
o Ex: For example, a person may hold prejudiced views towards a certain race or gender etc. (e.g. sexist).
• Stereotype: a belief about the personal attributes of a group of people. Stereotypes are sometimes overgenelized, inaccurate, and resistant to new information. Stereotypes are the cognitive component of outgroup bias
o Ex: the British are reserved, The French are Arrogant.
• Discrimination: unjustifiable negative behaviour toward a group or its members. Discrimination is the behavioural component of outgroup bias.
o Racial discrimination in South Africa. Apartheid (literally "separateness") was a system of racial segregation that was enforced in South Africa from 1948 to 1994. Non-white people where prevented from voting and lived in separate communities.
o Age discrimination is discrimination against a person or group on the grounds of age.
o Gender Discrimination: In Western societies while women are often discriminated against in the workplace, men are often discriminated against in the home and family environments. For instance after a divorce women receive primary custody of the children far more often than men. Women on average earn less pay than men for doing the same job
• Racism: 1) an individiual's prejudicial attitudes and discriminary behaviour toward peeps of given race
2) institutional practices (even if not motivated by prejudice) that subordinate peeps of given rac
• Sexism: 1) individual's prejudicial attitudes and discriminatory behaviour towards peeps of given gender 2) institutional practices that subordinate peeps of given gender (motivated/unmotivated by prejudice
• Stereotype threat: discruptive concern when facing a negative stereotype, that one will be evaluated based on a negative sterotype. Unlike self-fulfulling prophecies that hammer's one's reputation into one's self-concept, stereotype threat situations have immediate effects
• Social identity: The "we" aspect of our self-concept. The part of our to "Who am I" that comes from our group.
• Ingroup: "Us" - a group of people who share a sense of belonging, a feeling of common identity
• Outgroup: "Them" - a group that people perceive as distinctively different of apart from their ingroup
• Ingroup bias: The tendency to favour one's own group.
• Realistic group conflict theory: theory that prejudice arises from competition among groups for scarce resources
• Ethnocentrism: a belief in the superiority of one's own ethnic and cultural group and a corresponding disdain for all other groups.
• Authoritarianism: a personalized stile characterized by submission to legitimate authority, a general level of aggressiveness towards outgroups, and a high degree of adherence to social conventions
• Outgroup homogeneity effect: perception of outgroup members as more similar to another than are ingroup members. Thus "they are alike; we are diverse."
• Just-world phenomenon: the tendency of people to believe the world is just and that people therefore get what they deserve and they deserve what they get
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The principal of any school has a very important role to play. She guides the children of the school to know what is right and what is not and hence they frame the future of a child. It I the schools that provide the necessary education to the children so that they can grow in future to fulfil the dreams that their parents have seen for them and eventually flourish and grow in their lives. It is the school that needs to groom the children in the right direction so that they know how to differentiate between right and wrong.
Being a principal in any new school is going to be a challenging task. This is so because not only the environment is new to me as an individual but also to the people around me .Hence building a better understanding becomes the first set of tasks that need to be accomplished. After which then we need to understand what the problem areas are and then work accordingly to resolve those areas.
In a school that comprises of students coming from all different caste and creed the first and the foremost thing is that students should never get an impression that the new principal is favouring the students of the same caste or anything of that sort. There are a lot of steps that need to be undertaken in order to ensure that the school is not under the problem of prejudice and aggression.