Assessment 1: Reflective Essay Session

Session 7 Length: maximum of 2800 words
Marks: 100 (40%)

What is a Reflective Essay? Reflection exercises offer the student the opportunity to consider
their thoughts, opinions, and experiences about specific content covered in the module.
Furthermore, it allows the student to engage with how their own opinions and experiences
influence their acceptance, understanding and views of new theories, ideas, concepts, or
information. Writing that focuses on reflection allow the student to not only express their own
opinions but also works to improve their analytical skills, as well as, their comprehension of key
concepts and/or ideas related to the topic for reflection. The student’s ability to: examine their
thoughts about the content, and what it means for them, offering a unique and independent yet
related view, and understanding of the content, will be assessed. Furthermore, the student’s
ability to write and reflect will be assessed.


The reflective essay focuses on two topic areas covered in this module, namely attitude and social influence in changing behaviour. In your essay, respond to the following:
Attitude: Explain cognitive dissonance in relation to Zimbardo’s experiment;

  • Draw on someof the recent empirical research on cognitive dissonance to explore how cognitive dissonance isused to encourage behaviour change;
  • Identify and describe an event in which youexperienced cognitive dissonance;
  • Describe the attitude which induced your state of cognitive
    dissonance; and
  • Identify the cognitive elements that had to be changed to reduce your state of cognitive dissonance. Social influence in changing behaviour:

Provide a literature-based explanation on why ‘Social Influencers’ can capitalise on and pursue a career as a ‘SocialInfluencer’;

  • Describe the various forms of social influences; o Reflect on and describe a situation where you adopted either one of these forms of social influence; and
  • Provide a critical reflection on your adoption of this particular social influence. Would you have done things differently? Substantiate your answer.

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