Cultural and Group Influence

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Culture and Group Influence Ada Bren PSY/400 February 10, 2014 Dr. Malia Sherman, PsyD Culture and Group Influence People belong to many types of groups. The family group is usually the first and most important. Then there are many social groups when an individual is younger he or she connects with a peer group however, as the individual ages he or she connects with groups that share his or her personal interests. In his or her community the group may be a church, sport team, or a group that shares his or her cultural background such as a Cherokee Indian group. The types of groups are as varied as there are types of people. Social facilitation The tendency for people to perform better when in the company of others is called social facilitation. “The term facilitation refers to the early observations that performance was enhanced when others were present. Subsequent research has found the relationship between social presence and individual performance to be complicated. Task complexity, evaluation context, and type of presence are some of the factors that researchers have demonstrated moderate the impact of presence on performance. Social facilitation theory now refers not only to performance enhancements, but also to impairments” (Aiello & Douthitt, 2001, p. 1). The aroused state caused by a group on the individual can enhance performance when the group is performing simple tasks. However, if the tasks are more difficult it can hurt performance. Within in a group of people the individual can have both positive and negative emotions heightened through the arousal from the presence of others. One of the negative emotions is the fear of judgment by others in the group this can affect the individuals performance. Fear can be a motivator in a positive way as well making the individual step up his or her efforts for the task the group is doing.

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