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Polarization in Group Decisions

b) What causes people to take a more extreme position after the small group discussion?

c) How do judgments made by individuals compare to judgments made by a group?

d) Does discussion lead groups to make good decisions or bad decisions?

e) Do some research on one of the following topics: Risky Shift, Cautious Shift, Group Think, Group Polarization, Abilene Paradox, Social Influence, Social Comparison, Conformity. Would your research shed any light on why the strength of people's opinions changes after group discussion? Explain.

f) How can you prevent these types of decision biases?

g) How can you use polarization to your advantage?

Solution Preview

b) What causes people to take a more extreme position after the small group discussion?

People take more extreme positions in group discussions when they feel passionate about the subject matter being discussed. Passionate subjects such as abortion, capital punishment, and other divisive issues such as legalization of marijuana can elicit very extreme positions that are difficult to rectify because of the person's passion associated with the subject matter. Therefore, these people tend to take more extreme positions than otherwise taken for less divisive subject matters.

c) How do judgments made by individuals compare to judgments made by a group?

Judgments made by the group are predicated upon concessions and discourse that dictates how the eventual group decision is made. Groups tend to elicit debate, which allows individual opinions to drive the discussion and create more insight before a judgment is made. Individuals don't have a diverse array of ...

Solution Summary

600+ words discuss the dangers of decision discussion resulting in polarization, along with how to turn that to your advantage and avoid similar biases.

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