The rising complexity in a global society generates a new dimension in perpetual ponderings about how to understand the self in relation to others. Continuously facing dynamically shifting cultural environments, we may wonder:
- Why are others different or the same?
- Why do people say what they say and do what they do?
- Are behaviors the consequences of our own decisions or unseen forces?
These are among the questions that social psychologists explore as they attempt to understand the relationship between the individual and others to explain the dynamic mutual influences in social phenomena.
Although the questions explored and answers discovered by social psychologists often seem like common knowledge, social psychology offers a distinctive set of ideas about the individual in a social context. To understand ourselves in context with others and inoculate ourselves from undue external forces who use social psychology to influence us, let's do the following:
- Explore the history, theoretical frameworks, research methods, competing theories, and social psychology controversies.
- Synthesize learning from the field for applications and interventions on social issues in our own workplaces and lives.