- SOCIAL IMPACT THEORY (Evaluation)
- Study to support - Milgram P-One study that supports the Social Impact Theory is Milgram's study. E-When the teacher had peer support they were less likely to obey the authority figure's orders. E-It supports the Social Impact's theory about the social divisional effects. Because the number of targets outnumbers the numbers of source there is less chance of obedience.
- Supporting Evidence: FORMULA APPLIES TO ALL CULTURES P- A strength of the theory is that the formula I=F(SIN) can be generalised to all cultures. E- The idea is that the strength, immediacy and number of the source increases so will the level of obedience.
- Conflicting evidence: P- The theory is limited in the type of social situation it is able to explain. E- The theory suggests that when the strength, immediacy and number of the source increase so does the level of obedience. E- But the theory cannot help us to understand what would happen, in a situation where the source and the target are equal in strength, immediacy and number.
- Conflicting Evidence - FACTORS P- A weakness of the theory is that it has narrowed down obedience as a result of 3 factors. E- The impact of others involves so many different factors about the social situation such as measuring powers of persuasion or even size of group. E- It seems that such a wealth of factors cannot be reduced to a mathematical formula.
- Conflicting Evidence: PRESENCE P- A weakness of the Social Impact Theory is that it does not look at obedience in particular, but rather social impact. E- For example, the theory helps to understand why the presence of others, makes them more likely to obey. E- However the theory can't explain why the change of settings affects the level of obedience.
- Other Explanations: Individual Differences: P- A weakness of this theory is that it has failed to account for individual differences. E- In terms of obedience, this theory suggests that if the source is perceived as a legitimate authority figure who is immediate to the individual and who are greater in number then they will be likely to obey. E- The theory fails to consider that some people are more likely to resist social impact and some people are more easily influenced.