Social Desirability And The Manipulation Of Self Concepts. How The Pressures Of Others Can Contribute To A Shift In Self Image.

1743 words - 7 pages

People crave success. Kunda and Sanitioso (1989) stated that our self-concept is malleable, that the desire to be more like others is enough for us to make subtle changes to our self-concept. 102 university students were each assigned to one of two groups. Each group was informed that either extraversion or introversion was responsible for academic success by way of fictitious study. They were then asked to rate the strength of characteristics in themselves. It was found that the extraversion success group rated themselves more highly on a majority of the tests given to them. As Kunda and Sanitioso (1989) found, the extraverted success groups differed in their self-ratings and a majority of the ratings. The extraversion success group rated the extraversion characteristics more highly than did the introverted success group. The extension of this study lead to a significant difference between the two groups rating themselves as more or less similar to another individual. This result suggested that people tend to prefer the company of people like themselves.Introduction:Are self-concepts malleable? Or do people have set views, opinions and desires that we can not change? Kunda and Sanitioso (1989) studied the working self-concept and found it to be relatively malleable (Kunda, Sanitioso and Fong 1990). The example used in their study involved university students and their desire for success. Subjects were told that either introversion or extraversion was responsible for academic success. Subjects were then asked to rate themselves on a scale of one - six on a number of related characteristics. It was hypothesized that extraversion success subjects would rate themselves more highly than introversion success subjects. This was exactly what they found.This study is a replica of the one performed by Kunda and Sanitioso (1989) although it does go one step further. It is hypothesized here that the extraverted success subjects will rate themselves as more similar to the extroverted individuals. It is also hypothesized that the introverted success group would be more likely to rate themselves as less extraverted when compared with the extraversion success groups' ratings.This is a test of the similarity concept in which we desire to be around those who are more like ourselves (Sanitioso, 1998). It has previously been hypothesized that people change their own self-concepts to ensure that they relate well with those around them. There is also pressure to see oneself in a desirable light (Kunda, Sanitioso and Fong, 1990). We know that the self guides behavior. This study focuses on motivated self-concept changes leading to predictable outcomes. In this case the focus is on the shift in ones' self-concept.Method:Subjects:102 students, both male and female, from the University of Melbourne participated in this study. 49 were placed into the introversion success group and 53 were placed into the extraversion success group.Materials:Fictitious report - An article...

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