by Saul Kassin

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Expand your knowledge of key concepts in Psychology, Third Edition! Connect to this FREE online study guide to review each chapter's material, take practice tests, research topics for course projects, and more.

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Some of my best friends are psychologists. They have different backgrounds and interests, but to a person they're excited about their work, the field, and the contributions being made by this intelligent and useful discipline.

I had three goals in writing this textbook. My first goal is to spark in students the same hunger, passion, and excitement that psychologists have for their work. Toward this end, I have tried to write a book that is not only "readable" but also warm, personal, engaging, and newsy. I have not ducked the hot and sticky issues. The ethics of animal research, the biological roots of homosexuality, and the recovery of repressed childhood memories are just a few of the current controversies that I have confronted head-on by reviewing available research. I have also made it a point to illustrate the principles of psychology with vivid events from the worlds of sports, entertainment, literature, medicine, politics, law, and current events. As a result, I never, ever, resort to "John and Mary in the dorm" hypotheticals to illustrate a point. The examples I use thus reflect my conviction that students have a deep and vested interest in a world that extends past the borders of the college campus.

My second goal is to teach students that psychology is not a mere laundry list o f names, dates, theories, and terms, but is an active and dynamic process of discovery—and that the state o f our knowledge evolves over time. Every psychology textbook presents the discipline as a science. Indeed, many authors devote a whole second chapter to research methods. I have taken a somewhat more integratedapproach. Since research methods are central to psychology's identity and development, this topic is introduced fully and comprehensively in Chapter 1, along with the field itself. In learning about research methods, from the use of case studies to experiments and meta-analysis, students are encouraged to see science as a process that is slow, cumulative, and dynamic.

My third goal—which is the hardest to achieve but is also the most important—is to get students thinking like psychologists. I believe that an author cannot invoke critical thinking in students the way a parent spoonfeeds a baby. Rather, critical thinking is a frame of mind, an attitude that emerges naturally in response to information that is engaging and personally relevant—which leads me to the special features of this book. Determined to get the student reader to think like a psychologist, and to do so without gimmicks, I have integrated the following features into this textbook.

Special Features

"What's Your Prediction?" Studies

To orient students to the material in each chapter—and to get them thinking in operational terms—I open each chapter with a detailed account of an actual study. Some are classics in the field; others are new. Some are laboratory experiments; others are field studies, archival studies, or self-report surveys. In some, students are asked to imagine being a subject in an experiment. In others, they are cast into the role of the researcher or an observer. In all cases, I set the stage with a vivid account of the procedures used. After students have read about the situation and have imagined being part of it, they are asked to predict the results. The actual findings are then revealed, followed by a discussion of what it all means.

I have used this technique in the classroom for many years and have found that it works like a charm. After students become personally committed to a prediction, they sit at the edge of their seats, eager to know what happened. Then when the results are revealed, they think long and hard about the study and its methods—particularly when the results contradict their predictions. Now that's critical thinking.

Feature Boxes
In every chapter of the text, you will find two or three special, high-interest boxes designed to get students thinking like psychologists. Toward this end, I have written four types of boxes: "Psychology and . . . ," "How to . . . ," "Through the Global Window," and "Debunking the Myth."

"Psychology and . . ."
These days, some of the most exciting work in all areas of psychology connects basic theories and research, on the one hand, to various real-world applications, on the other. There are many fertile domains of application that animate psychologists. To represent some of these areas, "Psychology and . . ." boxes describe applied research in such areas as health, education, business, law, sports, and the environment. These boxes will enable students to see psychology from an important and enticing other perspective—"out there," in action, and in the public forum.

"How to..."
As all instructors know, students often wonder and ask about the personal relevance of psychology to their own well-being. "How to . . ." boxes are specifically designed to answer this question by describing some of the ways in which students can use psychology to improve aspects of their own lives. Practical advice is thus presented on a whole range of matters.

"Through the Global Window..."
Inspired by psychology's recent explorations into the study of human cultures, and racial and ethnic groups, "Through the Global Window" boxes focus on fundamental questions about universals in human nature—and the ways in which people throughout the world are both similar and different.

"Debunking the Myth . . ."
These boxes present popular conceptions about people, the mind, and behavior, or conclusions prematurely drawn from early research for which there is no empirical support. It's my hope that "Debunking the Myth" boxes will encourage students to reflect on—and reevaluate—their own intuitive theories, beliefs, and commonsense conceptions on a whole range of psychological matters.

Study Aids

Preparing students for what they are going to read and then asking them questions about that material as they read can facilitate the learning and retention of concepts. Accordingly, each chapter is structured to help students master the material as they move from one major section to the next.

Preview questions introduce the areas of inquiry upcoming in each major section.

Review questions at the end of every major section challenge students to recall and apply important concepts before moving on to the next section.

Big Picture overviews at the end of each chapter provide a brief narrative overview of the main points. This final section is designed to encourage the reader to step back from the theories, research findings, and other fine details contained within the chapter, and refocus from a wider angle on the "big picture" questions initially raised in What's Your Prediction?

End of Chapter materials provide a final review for students. Each of these sections begins with a detailed, section by section, Summary and a list of Key Terms. These are followed by a series of questions entitled Thinking Like a Psychologist, which challenge students to think critically and to apply the major concepts discussed in the chapter.

Internet Resources are also provided so that interested students can approach the world as a psychologist would—inside the classroom and out, when they're reading this book, and when they're not. These resources consist of Web sites that students can access for more information of relevance to the chapter. These resources are also listed on the Companion Website that accompanies Psychology, Third Edition.

Abundant graphic presentations are presented throughout this text. Tables, figures, photographs, hands-on exercises, cartoons, factoids, quotations, and survey results have all been carefully selected to illustrate important principles.

Detailed subject and author indexes.

References A complete list of more than two thousand text citations.

What's New

From one area to the next, this book is remarkably up to date. I have taken a fresh look at the latest theoretical and research developments within each and every chapter. In doing so, I have tried to strike a balance between "classics" from psychology's historical warehouse and new studies hot off the presses. But my main goal is to describe the state of psychology today—and to do so in a way that is responsible. As in any text, the scholarship must be accurate and current. Therefore, the more than six hundred new references rely most heavily on research appearing in high-quality journals. In particular, I'd like to draw your attention to the following topics, which are either new to this edition or have received expanded coverage:

  • Women and minorities in the history of psychology (Chapter 1)
  • Sociocultural perspectives in psychology (Chapter 1)
  • Sports-related head injuries (Chapter 2)
  • Phantom pain (Chapter 2)
  • Neurogenesis (Chapter 2)
  • Influence without awareness (Chapter 4)
  • Ironic effects of mental control (Chapter 4)
  • Classical conditioning of the immune system (Chapter 5)
  • False memories (Chapter 6)
  • Animal cognition (Chapter 7)
  • Benefits of cognitive heuristics (Chapter 7)
  • Origins of homosexuality (Chapter 8)
  • Happiness and subjective well-being (Chapter 9)
  • Cultural influences on emotion (Chapter 9)
  • Infants' sensitivity to number (Chapter 10)
  • Effects of peer rejection in childhood (Chapter 10)
  • Risk-taking in adolescence (Chapter 11)
  • Midlife crisis and satisfaction (Chapter 11)
  • Adulthood changes in time perspective (Chapter 11)
  • Development of expertise (Chapter 12)
  • The Mozart Effect (Chapter 12)
  • Stereotype threat effects on performance (Chapter 12)
  • Automatic and unconscious social influences (Chapter 13)
  • School violence (Chapter 13)
  • Ethnic identity conflict (Chapter 14)
  • Implicit stereotyping (Chapter 14)
  • Contemporary studies of unconscious defensive processes (Chapter 15)
  • Social anxiety (Chapter 16)
  • Use of virtual reality exposure in systematic desensitization (Chapter 17)
  • Proactive forms of coping with stress (Chapter 18)

Coverage of Human Diversity

Psychologists have always been fascinated by differences—among cultures, among racial and ethnic groups within cultures, and between men and women. As we enter the twenty-first century, this topic is generating a great deal of scientific interest and controversy. These topics are addressed, as appropriate, throughout this text. Similarities and differences are thus noted in perception, emotion, reasoning, intelligence, child and adult development, social behavior, the structure of personality, and psychopathology. Group similarities and differences are also presented throughout the text in newly written boxes headed "Through the Global Window."

In order to bring together the most important new work in the area of human diversity, I have also dedicated an entire chapter to this subject. Chapter 14, entitled "Social and Cultural Groups," examines such topics as cultural differences between East and West, stereotyping, prejudice, racism in America, and gender similarities and differences. As this chapter reveals, "Everyone is basically the same, yet no two people are alike."

A Capstone Chapter

All introductory psychology texts that I've seen come to an end on whatever happens to be the final word of the last substantive chapter. Typically, no effort is made to integrate the material or to provide students with a sense of closure. A feature unique to this text is a closing "capstone" chapter that brings together the various areas of psychology on a hot topic that is dear to everyone's health: health and well-being. Following an initial discussion of "mind over matter," Chapter 18 presents the latest research on the self, the health implications of self-awareness and self-deception, the processes of stress and coping, and the exciting new work in the area of psychoneuroimmunology. As noted in this final chapter, "The mind is a powerful tool. The more we know about how to use it, the better off we'll be."

Statistical Appendix

For those who wish to analyze research results using descriptive and inferential statistics, this appendix clearly leads students, step by step, through methods of describing data, measures of central tendency and variability, the normal distribution, correlations, t tests, and the analysis of variance.

The Supplements Package

For the Instructor

Instructor's Resource Manual: Prepared by Alan Swinkels of St. Edward's University and Traci Giuliano of Southwestern University, this manual contains a wealth of material to help you plan and manage your course, including: chapter overviews, detailed lecture suggestions and outlines, lecture "launchers," learning objectives, demonstrations and activities, teaching tips, suggestions for student projects, transparency suggestions, and video resources for each chapter. Also included in this edition's IRM is material to guide you on how to assign and use the text-specific companion website, The Psychology Place website, and the Mind Matters CD-ROM that accompany this edition of Psychology, Third Edition.

Test Item File: Prepared by John Caruso of the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, this test bank contains over 3,000 multiple choice, true/false, short-answer and essay questions that test factual, applied and conceptual knowledge.

Prentice Hall Test Manager: One of the best-selling test-generating software programs on the market, Test Manager is available in Windows and Macintosh formats and contains a Gradebook, Online Network Testing and many tools to help you edit and create tests. The program comes with full Technical Support and telephone "Request a Test" service.

Prentice Hall's Introductory Psychology Transparencies, Series V: Designed in large-type format for lecture settings, these full-color overhead transparencies add visual appeal to your lectures by augmenting the visuals in the text with a variety of new illustrations.

PowerPoint Slides and Online Graphics Archive: Available in the Faculty Module of the Companion Website at, each chapter's art has been digitized and is available for download into any presentation software. PowerPoint lectures for each chapter are also available for download.

Prentice Hall Video Libraries: Prentice Hall has assembled a superior collection of video materials which range from short lecture launchers to full-length detailed features for use in the Introductory Psychology course. The videos below are available to qualified adopters.

  • ABC News Videos for Introductory Psychology, Series III consists of segments from ABC Nightly News with Peter Jennings, Nightline, 20/20, Prime Time Live, and The Health Show. A summary and questions, designed to stimulate critical thinking for each segment, are included in the Instructor's Resource Manual.
  • The Alliance Series: The Annenberg/CPB Collection is the most extensive collection of professionally produced videos available with any introductory psychology textbook. Selections include videos in the following Annenberg series: The Brain, The Brain Teaching Modules, Discovering Psychology, The Mind, and The Mind Teaching Modules.
  • Films for the Humanities and Sciences A wealth of videos from the extensive library of Films for the Humanities and Sciences, on a variety of topics in psychology, are available to qualified adopters. Contact your local Prentice Hall representative for a list of videos.

Teaching Psychology, Second Edition by Fred W. Whitford serves as a guide to manage the myriad complex tasks required to teach Introductory Psychology effectively from the start. The Second Edition has been updated to include coverage of the regional teaching of psychology conferences and organizations, and a new section on using the Internet and online services to enhance teaching.

Media Support for Psychology, Third Edition

Both Professors and Students will find many useful resources in the media program to accompany this text. Companion Website: This FREE online Study Guide allows students to review each chapter's material, take practice tests, research topics for course projects, and more. Professors should visit the Faculty Module of the site to download electronic versions of the Instructor's Resource Manual, PowerPoint Slides for each chapter, and an Online Graphics Archive.

The Psychology Place, Special Edition: This premier web resource for Introductory Psychology provides interactive learning activities, practice tests, "Best of the Web" site listings, current research news, an online glossary, FAQs about Psychology and other resources. Students get their subscription with the purchase of a new textbook; faculty get their subscription upon adoption of this text.

Mind Matters CD-ROM: Free when packaged with a new text, Mind Matters features interactive learning modules on history, methods, biological psychology, learning, memory, sensation and perception. Each module combines text, video, graphics, simulations, games and assessment to reinforce key psychological concepts.

On-Line Course Management: For professors interested in using the Internet and on-line course management in their courses, Prentice Hall offers fully customizable on-line courses in WebCT, B1ackBoard and eCollege to accompany this textbook. Contact you local Prentice Hall Representative or visit demo for more information.

For the Student

Study Guide: Prepared by Pamela Regan of California State University, Los Angeles, this student workbook is available to help students master the core concepts in each chapter. Incorporating key graphics and illustrations from the book, every chapter contains an overview and outline, learning objectives, key terms, matching or labeling exercises, practice multiple-choice and true/false test questions, and practice essay questions with brief guidelines for correct answers. Each chapter also includes a guide to The Psychology Place, and the activities on the site that reinforce each chapter's key concepts.

Psychology on the Internet: This "hands-on" Internet tutorial features Web sites related to psychology and general information about using the Internet for research. This supplement is available FREE when packaged with the text and helps students capitalize on all the resources that the World Wide Web has to offer.

Supplementary Textbooks Available
for Packaging

The following workbooks and supplementary textbooks are available in specially discounted packages with the textbook or as stand-alone supplements:

Forty Studies that Changed Psychology, Third Edition by Roger Hock of Mendocino College presents forty seminal research studies that have shaped modern psychological study. This paperback supplement provides an overview of each ground-breaking study, its findings, the impact these findings have had on current thinking in the discipline, and the most notable extensions and follow-up studies.

How to Think Like a Psychologist: Critical Thinking in Psychology, Second Edition by Donald McBurney of the University of Pittsburgh. This brief paperback uses a question-and-answer format to explore some of the most common questions students ask about psychology.

The Psychology Major: Careers and Strategies for Success by Eric Landrum, Idaho State University; Stephen Davis, Emporia State University; and Terri Landrum, Idaho State University. This brief paperback provides valuable information on career options available to psychology majors, tips for improving academic performance, and a guide to the APA style of research reporting.

Experiencing Psychology, by Gary Brannigan, SUNY, Plattesburg. This hands-on activity book contains 39 active-learning experiences corresponding to major topics in psychology to provide students experience in "doing" psychology.


I want to thank Roberta Meyer, my developmental editor, for her tireless efforts and insights when our time was most pressured. I also want to thank Eloise Donnelly and Barbara Salz for their help in locating the often striking photographs that adorn the pages of this book. I am also grateful to the production staff at Prentice Hall for their commitment to excellence. Look through this book and you'll see why I am indebted to those responsible for the design, artwork, and other aspects of production.

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