Evaluating resistance to social influence - Locus of Control


Evaluating resistance to social influence - Locus of Control


  • Research support - Holland repeated Milgram’s baseline study and measured which participants were internal and external. 37% of internals did not shock at the highest level, compared to 23% of externals. This shows resistance, at least in part, is a result of LOC.


  • Contradicting research - Twenge found that over 40 years, people became more resistant to obedience but more external in their beliefs. This suggests that LOC is not a suitable explanation of resistance.
  • Limited role of LOC - Rotter found that LOC is only important in new situations. If an individual has conformed or resisted influence in a past situation, they will repeat the same behaviour when confronted with a similar or identical scenario. This limits the use of LOC in explaining resistance


Overall the locus of control is a limited method of explaining resistance to social influence and obedience. 


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