This chapter considers the fundamental characteristics of social psychology and important theoretical perspectives in the field. Social psychology has a close relationship with other social sciences, especially sociology and psychology. The chapter discusses five theoretical perspectives: symbolic interaction, group processes, social structure and personality, a cognitive perspective, and evolutionary theory. Symbolic interaction theory holds that human nature and social order are products of communication among people. The group processes perspective focuses its attention on interaction in social groups or networks. Central to the cognitive perspective is the concept of cognitive structure, which refers broadly to any form of organization among cognitions. Evolutionary theory posits that social behavior is a product of long-term evolutionary adaptation. A variety of stakeholders, including employers and graduate and professional program faculty and administrators, are interested in college graduates with well-developed critical thinking skills. The chapter also presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book.