“Ingroups and Outgroups”
Intercultural Competence and Civic Engagement Project
In psychology, we frequently use the terms ingroup and outgroup to identify groups that we belong to and groups that we do not belong to, respectively. These terms are widely used across different platforms to explain attitudes, thoughts, and behaviors related to current social, political, and cultural events: for example, immigration policies; political affiliation; reproductive rights; incarceration policies; global warming; drug legalization; religious beliefs; gender identity and equality; education rights; civil rights; and, even, which sports team one supports.
It is common to think about members who share one’s ideologies as one’s ingroup. Ingroup identities that are strong and meaningful influence our self-esteem. We perceive members of our ingroup as distinctive and individual. Whereas, one is inclined to think of outgroup members (e.g., opposing ideologies) as “all the same” (Tajfel & Turner, 1979).
Objectives for this Project
1. Identify a social, political, or cultural issue that is important to you. Define, analyze, and discuss the relevance and significance of the issue in a logical and thoughtful way.
2. Recognize how culture influences one’s worldview about issues.
3. Identify why and how one can be involved in addressing important issues at the local, regional, national, and global level.
4. Recognize that culture may influence people to feel, think, and behave differently.
5. Identify and discuss similarities and differences between groups with opposing ideologies.
6. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of psychological principles* that explain one’s own and others’ thoughts, feelings, and behavior related to the issue.
7. Demonstrate the ability to successfully interact with someone from a different “culture.”
*For this project, you will support your views with psychological principles from at least two theoretical perspectives: social cognition; learning; motivation; emotions; perception; stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination; human development; biological; humanism; and others.
1. Define your ingroup. What is the issue? What is your ingroup’s position on this issue? (5pts)
2. Culture of the Ingroup (25 points)
a. Define the culture of the people in your ingroup (shared beliefs, values, traditions/practices, norms).
b. How has the group’s culture shaped your attitudes, thoughts, and behavior related to this issue?
c. What contributions has this group made (to other group members, the community, the city, state, country)?
d. Why is this group important to you? What types of things do you do (actions) to demonstrate your commitment and responsibility to the issue/position?
e. Why is it important to actively engage with the group?
3. Define the Outgroup. Take the same issue, and define the specific outgroup and its culture. This section will require research on your part. (20 points)
a. What is the group’s position on the issue?
b. What is the culture of the outgroup and how does it influence how its members think about the issue?
c. Why is this group important to its group members?
d. What contributions has this group made?
4. Compare and Contrast Ingroup and Outgroup (10 points)
Besides the obvious differences, why are their differences between the ingroup and outgroup? Applying what you have learned about psychology.
5. Imagine that you must spend a day with members of the outgroup you described above to address this important issue. (15 points)
a. How do you think you would feel about the encounter? Why?
b. How would you adapt your attitudes, thoughts, and behavior to demonstrate that you were willing to understand and successfully interact with members of the outgroup.
c. What Mindset would you have as you prepare for this encounter? What heart set and skill set would you need to develop and/or apply for a successful encounter (see power point in eCampus)?
6. Actual Engagement (5 points)
If you have engaged with members of the outgroup, describe the experience.
7. Intercultural Competence and Engagement with Communities: (15 points)
a. As you completed this assignment, did your thoughts and attitudes about the ingroup and/or outgroup change? If yes, how?
b. Why is it important for people to understand each other’s cultures/perspectives?
c. What have you learned from the research (and/or class discussion) that could be applied to help ingroup and outgroup members interact effectively to address this issue?
· Your discussion should be clear, concise, and in-depth. Answers should demonstrate knowledge and understanding of your ingroup’s culture and the outgroup’s culture, and how psychological principles apply to the similarities and differences between the groups.
· Do not rush through the assignment. Take time to think carefully about a group that is important to you. Think equally carefully about the outgroup (the group that feels differently about the same issue). You can get ideas for issues with opposing sides from the following databases. Opposing Viewpoints
Points of View
(If these links do not work, visit the MVC Library.)
· Research aspects of the outgroup: read reputable articles; visit credible websites; talk to people who belong to the outgroup.
· As you develop your report, reflect on any social or cultural barriers to interactions with members of the outgroup. According to psychological principles, why is that?
Length: Minimum 3 pages (maximum 5 pages); typed, double-spaced, with 1” margins, 12-point font. Papers that are not typed will not be accepted. If the paper you turn in is illegible, you may forfeit all points for this assignment.
Style: Answers must be in complete sentences using proper grammar and spelling.
Writing Center (5 points): You must visit the MVC Writing Center for a writing consultation before the due date. This is an excellent, free resource. Writing Center consultations require an appointment.
Citations: You must have at least two (2) references to specific psychological theories to support your answers. The theories/concepts should be clearly related to your answers. Cite theory, author(s), main points, and how it supports your answer.
· Psychology uses the APA format for citations (a tutorial link is provided on eCampus).
· Do not include first names, book titles, or journal article titles in your written answers.
· For example, if you cite information from your text, do not write: “According to Sandra Ciccarelli and J. Noland White in Psychology: An Exploration…”
· Do write: According to Ciccarelli and White (2016), psychology is a fascinating discipline.
· Direct quotes should be used sparingly (no more than two for the entire project) and only when the original author’s statement is the most effective way to state a concept or finding. You should always try to put other sources’ work in your own words.
· If you use a direct quote, it should be no longer than one sentence.
· “In any society, there will always be ingroups and outgroups, or us versus them” (Ciccarelli & White, 2016, p. 384).
· According to Ciccarelli and White, “in any society, there will always be ingroups and outgroups, or us versus them” (2016, p. 384) .
· Periods go at the end of the sentence, but inside the closing punctuation, including quotation marks, if the quotation mark ends the sentence. Periods always go after the parenthesis ( ), unless the parentheses contain a full sentence. (Put periods at the end of a complete sentence within parentheses.)
· A complete list of references should be at the end of your assignment (not included as part of the 3-page minimum).
Due Date: November 20, 2017
Two copies of the final paper are required:
1) A hard copy turned in at the beginning of class Monday, November 20, 2017
2) An electronic copy uploaded on eCampus by November 20, 2017, under the Intercultural Competence Project Tab.
3) If you turn in only the electronic or hard copy of the paper, you will forfeit 50% of your grade.
GRADING (see Rubric)
In addition to points covered on the Grading Rubric, this project will be graded using elements of the MVC Quality Enhancement Program (QEP) Writing Rubric.
· Clarity: understandable, nothing is confusing
· Accuracy: the information is true, correct, and can be verified. Project demonstrates accurate and knowledgeable understanding of one’s ingroup and the outgroup and the relevant issue.
· Precision: includes the specific information needed to address and explain the problem, issues.
· Relevance: Incorporates meaningful information and observations. Information provided relates directly to the project.
· Depth: includes enough complex information to address the psychological concepts related to ingroup and outgroup dynamics.
· Breadth: involves more than one point of view; considers alternative perspectives
Logic: answers/paper makes sense; nothing is confusing, no contradictions
· Significance: focuses on the important aspects of the ingroup’s and outgroup’s identities, positions, beliefs, norms, (culture). respondent’s life, not the trivial
· Fairness: considers the thoughts and views of others