Conformity to social roles

  • Created by: Georgia
  • Created on: 18-04-19 09:44
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  • Conformity to social roles (Zimbardo)
    • The parts that we play as members of a social group or society in order to meet the expectations of the situation
    • Aim
      • To invesitgate the extent to which people would conform to their social roles
    • Procedure
      • Volunteer sample of male students who took on roles as guards or prisoners
      • Prisoners wore numbered smocks, nylon caps, chains around ankles
      • Guards wore khaki uniforms, reflective sunglasses and carried handcuffs, keys and truncheons
    • Results
      • Prisoners developed huge fits of rage, stress and anxiety
      • De-individuation; prisoners started to referring themselves as numbers instead of names
      • Stopped at 6 days instead of 14
    • Evaluation
      • Practical applications; changed operations in US prisons
      • Ethical concerns; informed consent, protection from harm, distress
        • Helped to introduce ethical guidelines
      • Researcher bias; Zimbardo's double role as experimenter and prison boss
      • Gender bias and lacks population validity and thus, can't generalise


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