The Social Psychology of Groups - SP619

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2018-19
Canterbury Spring
View Timetable
6 15 (7.5) PROF MR Sutton


SP302 Introduction to Social Psychology


Not available as a ‘wild’ module



This module introduces you to the major orientations and discoveries in the social psychology of group processes. The material covers both behaviour within groups (e.g. group structure, social influence, leadership, and group performance) and behaviour between groups (e.g. intergroup conflict and cooperation, social categorisation and social identity, prejudice and its reduction). Basic mechanisms in groups that occupy the same position in the social structure in terms of power, status, and group size, as well as mechanisms that characterize asymmetric groups will be analysed. There is a strong emphasis on social psychological theory being examined by systematic empirical research. Teaching will be by lectures and seminars with additional practical demonstrations from time to time.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

1 two-hour lecture per week plus 2 one-hour seminars during the term

Method of assessment

Coursework: One research proposal (2,500 words) (40%). Unseen 2-hour examination (60%): one hour of which (50% of marks) will consist of multiple-choice questions to test understanding of the material

Indicative reading

M A Hogg & G M Vaughan. Social Psychology (6th edition). Harlow, England: Prentice Hall, 2011.

R S Baron & N L Kerr, Group Processes, Group Decision Making, Group Action (2nd edition). Open University Press, 2003.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

Ability to describe how group membership affects self-perception, the perception of others, and the ways individuals behave
Understanding of the basic cognitive, affective, and behavioural mechanisms that lead to these outcomes
Understanding of how intragroup and intergroup structure affects social perception and behaviour
Ability to provide evidence from empirical tests of the theories and models discussed
Ability to link theory and research in the social psychology of group processes to current issues in society
Ability to carry out critical reflection, evaluation, written analysis and interpretation

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