17305 - Psychology of Group Relationships

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Good health and well-being Gender equality Reduced inequalities Sustainable cities

Academic Year 2019/2020

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course, students a) will know the functioning of social groups, their potentials and their disfunctions; b) will be able to understand the differences between individual and group behaviour; c) will be able to understand the differences between group and intergroup behaviour; d) will know the origins of pregiudice and social discrimination.

Course contents

The following issues will be addressed:

1. Socio-psychological definition of a group
2. The psychology of crowds
3. Group socialisation and interaction processes
4. Justice and morality within groups
5. Group productivity and decision-making
6. Prejudice
7. Individual accounts of prejudice
8. Prejudice and intergroup relations
9. Social categorization and stereotypes
10. Stigmatization of prejudice target
11. New and old forms of prejudice
12. Sexism and sexual objectification
14. Prejudice reduction

The course will resume some classical topics of social psychology (e.g., intergroup conflict), with the aim of examining in depth such issues and illustrating their theoretical and research development. Thus, the course of social psychology should be intended as preparatory for the course of psychology of group relations.

The course will take place during the second semester (from February to May 2020) at the Cesena Campus of the School of Psychology and Education (address: p.zza A. Moro, 90).


Brown, R. (2005). Psicologia sociale dei gruppi. Bologna: Il Mulino (Chapters 1, 2, 3, 5)

[Brown, R. (1999). Group processes: Dynamics within and between groups (2nd Edition). Wiley Blackwell].

Brown, R. (2013). Psicologia del pregiudizio. Bologna: Il Mulino (ch 1-2; ch. 3 par. 1.3; ch. 4;ch. 5;ch. 6 except for par. 2.1.1, 2.1.3, 4; ch. 7 till 2.4; ch. 8 par.2.2 only; ch. 9).

[English version: Brown, R. (2010). Prejudice: Its social psychology (2nd edition). Wiley-Blackwell]

Pagliaro, S. e Di Cesare, C. (2013). La moralità in psicologia sociale: L’importanza di un approccio basato sui gruppi. Psicologia Sociale, 2/2013, 193-210.

[Foreign students can replace this article with the following one: Ellemers, N., Pagliaro, S., & Barreto, M. (2013). Morality and behavioural regulation in groups: A social identity approach. European Review of Social Psychology, 24, 160-193.]

Carraro et al. (2011). Di padre in figlio. La trasmissione degli stereotipi di genere all’interno della famiglia. Psicologia Sociale 2/2011, 153-170.

Galdi, S. (2014). Dall’oggettivazione delle donne in televisione alle molestie sessuali, il passo è breve? Psicologia Sociale, 3/2014, 271-289

[Foreign students can replace Carraro et al. 2011 and Galdi 2014 with two articles in English. Please contact me if you wish to replace the two articles]

Teaching methods

Classroom taught -lessons will require the active participation of students.

There will be some practise lessons in groups aimed at facilitating the understanding of some group phenomena.

During the course students will carry out group work on specific topics.

Assessment methods

The examinations aims at werifying students' achievement of the following outcomes:

a) knowledge of the functioning of social groups, their potentiality and their disfunctions; b) ability to understand the differences between individual and group behavior, and to identify the main group phenomena; c) knowledge of the origins of prejudice and social discrimination; d) ability to plan interventions of prejudice reduction and amelioration of group relationships.

DUE TO THE COVID-19 LOCKDOWN, THE EXAMINATION WILL BE ONLINE. THE STUDENTS ARE REQUIRED TO SIGN IN THROUGH ALMAESAMI. The examination will consist in 31 closed questions to be addressed in 25 minutes. Each correct answer will be scored 1; each incorrect answer will be scored 0. In order to pass the exam, students should provide at least 18 correct answers. With 30 correct answer, the mark will be 30; students who provide correct answers to all the 31 questions will obtain the mark of 30L.

Erasmus students and students who have right to additional examination time should write the teacher before May 25. Erasmus students might use a paper dictionary during the examination.

Basing on their schedule, during the examination the students have to connect via TEAMS. They will be distributed in virtual classes on ZOOM, which will be used for video surveillance. The written examination will take place via EOL platform. The teacher will provide further information about the examination and the softwares that will be used on her website.

Students might carry out an individual work (i.e., a brief essay commenting an international journal article) or a group work (i.e., a group presentation during classes). The individual work must be sent to the teacher before May 15th. The individual and the group work (with a mark ranging from 0 to 4) will contribute to the final mark.

Students who want to take the exam are required to register through almaesami before the deadline. Students who will not be able to register due to technical problems before the deadline should communicate it to the secretary. The teacher will decide whether they can take the exam.

Teaching tools

Slides (PowerPoint). Slides used during the lectures will be available for students on the "Insegnamenti online" platform.


During the lessons, the teacher will signal scientific articles which students could use for group or individual additional work.

According to Law n°170/2010 students with diagnoses of DSA and students with disabilities are entitled to the specific forms of assessment and can use the allowed support tools during the exam (electronic devices, supplementary time, etc.).

Office hours

See the website of Silvia Moscatelli