Psychology 371: Attitude Change

Winter 1998, T Th 12:30-1:45, GCB 209

Instructor: Alan Strathman
Office: 109 McAlester Hall
Phone: 882-1966
OH: M W 1-2 and by appointment


Zimbardo, P. G., & Leippe, M. (1991). The psychology of attitude change and social influence. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Petty, R., et al. (1994). To think or not to think: Exploring two routes to persuasion. In T. Brock, & S. Shavitt (Eds.), Psychology of persuasion. San Francisco: Freeman. (THIS CHAPTER IS ON RESERVE AT THE LIBRARY)

Course Objectives

  • To introduce students to the theories and principles of attitude change and persuasion that have been developed and tested.
  • To help students understand how these principles and theories are at work in their own lives.
  • To demonstrate how these principles and theories are at work also in many fields of interest, including business, law, and politics.
  • To give students a better understanding of the way advertisers incorporate these theories to change attitudes.
  • To help students better understand the factors that influence and determine their own attitudes.






    Exams: Three exams will be given. Exam 1 will be given Thursday February 12, and will cover lecture and reading material from the first 5 weeks. Exam 2 will be given Thursday March 26. It will cover lecture and reading material from the second 5 weeks of the course. In addition, there will be a portion of Exam 2 that will be comprehensive. Exam 3 will be given Tuesday April 28. It will cover lecture and reading material from the third 5 weeks of the course. Like with Exam 2, there will be a portion of the exam that is comprehensive. There will be no final exam. Each exam will count 25% toward your final grade.

    Papers: Up to five papers will be assigned during the course of the semester. There are two purposes in assigning these papers. One purpose is to encourage you to think about a few of the lecture topics outside of class. The second purpose of these papers is to give you the chance to apply principles and theories discussed in class to your own life. Specific topics will be announced in class. All papers will count equally and will, together, make up 25% of your final grade.

    Students with disabilities: This information is available in alternative formats upon request. Students who have disabilities that might affect their work (in or out of class) should check with me as soon as possible. MU can make a variety of arrangements to help assure equality of opportunity, and I am glad to work with you on this. You may also contact the Access Office for Students with Disabilities, A048 Brady Commons, 882-4696.

    Academic dishonesty: Students caught engaging in any kind of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Provosts office. In addition, a grade of 0 will be assigned for that piece of work. Please dont cheat, it's not nice and it's not fair.