Social Behavior Terms

Apr 2022
1
1
Florida
Hi there!
I am trying to understand the difference between "groupthink" and "group polarization". I know that they are different terms that refer to how a person's behavior changes in a group setting but I am unsure as to how they are different and how to decipher between them. If someone could help clarify that would be great. Thank you!
 
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Aug 2021
395
193
Texas, USA
They are very similar, actually, group think refers to the phenom in which the group reinforces its own beliefs to the point that it may become unrealistic in scope. For instance, one of the dangers of group think is to staff your group with people of similar beliefs which do not necessarily reflect the beliefs of the general population. This may lead to something like "New Coke" or a situation where a group of "yes people" reinforce the horrible idea their boss has, creating a delusional representation of society. The Emporer's New Clothes would be an example of this.
Group polarization is a phenom where the group influences or changes the influence of one or more members. A classic example of this is the old study where a volunteer is included in a group of psychologists who can actually influence the perception of the volunteer by unanimously agreeing on something contrary to the perceptive reality of the volunteer. Look into Social Comparative Theory for an example, where a person is concerned about not being considered part of the group or even wrong in their perception and so will change their mind to go along with the group. In one study up to 70% of volunteers who were shown a pair of lines in which one is significantly longer than the other will change their mind or answer if three or four group members before them claim the shorter line is actually longer, and vice versa.
Hope this helps,
Ivery
 
Jul 2021
783
103
London
Hi there!
I am trying to understand the difference between "groupthink" and "group polarization". I know that they are different terms that refer to how a person's behavior changes in a group setting but I am unsure as to how they are different and how to decipher between them. If someone could help clarify that would be great. Thank you!
I believe group thinking means a group setting where the group works together towards a certain outcome or goal which is not necessarily beneficial, so it's more of an objective directionality, in a way it can be viewed as positive as you are supposed to work to agreement and that is great if you are working on a project together or something, but on the other hand it may be viewed as negative because you are sacrificing an individualistic mindset, and obviously there is the risk that the outcome may not be good, imagine of criminal organizations and how they are born, whereas group polarization is about influencing that impacts the group thinking and I guess there is an element of belief and suggestion as well as a subjective type of directionality, and even in this case it can be a positive or negative thing again.
 
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