KEY STUDY: MILGRAM 1963

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  • MILGRAM
    • AO1
      • AIM
        • to investigat how obedient people would be in a situation where following orders would mean breaking the participant's moral code and harming another person
      • PROCEDURE
        • 40 males aged 20-50, volunteered through advertisement and payment they were told the experiment was on memory
          • they were introduced to 'Mr Wallace', who was a stooge and told one would be the teacher, they other would be a learner
            • he used a 'random' technique that ensured Mr Wallace was always the learner and the participant was always the teacher
              • Mr Wallace was strapped to a shock generator which was demonstrating by giving him a small shock
                • they were then placed either side of a dividing screen and the participant was told to shock Mr Wallace when he gave an incorrect answer
                  • these shocks increased by 15V for every wrong answer. On the generator there were signs that said 'Danger' and 'XXX' at 300V (enought to kill someone)
                    • Mr Wallace would scream as if he was in pain at every shock bellow 300V at which he would fall silent, as if he'd dies
                      • When the participants refused to carry on, they were given prompts such as 'it is absolutley essential that you continue' and 'the experiment requires that you continue. If they still refused after all comments were given, they were allowed to stop.
      • FINDINGS
        • 100% of the participants got up to 300Vs and 65% went to the full 450Vs
      • CONCLUSION
        • Although it caused them stress, they felt they had no other option but to carry on so obeyed the authority even though it went against their morals
    • AO2
      • G-only used men so can only be generalised to men
      • R-couldnt be replicated these days as it is unethical but got similar results to Hofilng et al in 1966 so can be said to be reliable
      • A-has applications in obedience and explaining events such as the Holocaust
      • V-had low ecological validity as it isnt an every day activity. They were aware of the experiement so may have acted differently than they would have in real life
      • E-no ethical guidelines so none were broken. however, if it was done today, he would have used deception, as they thought it was a memory test and they thought they were harming someone, he didnt gain informed consent and he caused psychological harm, although he did follow them up a year later. He did however debrief them.
      • Variation experiment-rebleious or obedient participants. 2 conditions, stooge refused at 150V and 210V. Or neither stooge refused. 1-50% refused to continute after 150V and 6/40 gave 450V. 2=72.5% went to full 450V-behaviour of fellow participants affects the obedience of the participants
  • he used a 'random' technique that ensured Mr Wallace was always the learner and the participant was always the teacher
    • Mr Wallace was strapped to a shock generator which was demonstrating by giving him a small shock
      • they were then placed either side of a dividing screen and the participant was told to shock Mr Wallace when he gave an incorrect answer
        • these shocks increased by 15V for every wrong answer. On the generator there were signs that said 'Danger' and 'XXX' at 300V (enought to kill someone)
          • Mr Wallace would scream as if he was in pain at every shock bellow 300V at which he would fall silent, as if he'd dies
            • When the participants refused to carry on, they were given prompts such as 'it is absolutley essential that you continue' and 'the experiment requires that you continue. If they still refused after all comments were given, they were allowed to stop.

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