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Polarization Polarization is a tendency to reason only in terms of extremes or opposites The most common type of polarization is group polarization Group polarization in general refers to the notion that judgments made by a group tend to be more extreme than judgments made by individual members The concept of group polarization developed from a notion of the risky shift It was originally thought that after group discussion individuals would make riskier decisions than before However researchers then realized tendency could also be to the other extreme that decisions could shift to a more cautious judgment Group polarization is an important phenomenon to study because it is relevant to our everyday lives When people with similar opinions begin to talk about an issue conflicts can increase because of the intensity of opinions Group interaction is in our daily lives thus it is extremely important to understand group polarization in order to understand and avoid dangerous situations There are three theories that explain this principal the persuasive arguments theory the social comparison theory and the social identity theory The persuasive arguments theory generally states that group polarization results from an exchange of information ideas or facts among group members thus providing each member more support for his or her position in the form of new ideas and arguments Group members opinions will change if they are exposed to a variety of different opinions assuming it fits into the persons preexisting opinions and how logical the information represents reality The social comparison theory generally states that people change their opinions in order to conform to the social norms of the group This theory compares self with others and a desire for acceptance If group members find out others have the same opinions they will usually intensify their views People want to be socially accepted so they will constantly try to present themselves favorable to others People do not only want to be accepted but also
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