Psychology aqa a unit 2 - social

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Types of conformity: Asch Original study:
Compliance: going All but one of the PPs were confederates. Child of its time- the PPs were all men and
along with others to Purpose of experiment was to see how the research was in the 1950s, a period of
gain their approval- the `'lone'' PP would react to anti communism.
normative social confederates. Spencer et al tried to repeat Asch's study in
influence. PPs sat in a room, and asked to look at England but they only got one conforming
Internalisation: lines of a different length. response out of 396 trials.
going along with 123 American undergrads. Stable or unpredictable?
others because you Showed series of lines The `'Asch'' effect of conformity was
have accepted their PPS always answered in same order. concluded to be an unpredictable effect
POV- informational Confederates gave same wrong answer rather than human behaviour according to
influence. 12/18 trials. Standing et al.
Identification: has Findings Conformity or independence?
elements of both Of the 12 trials, 36.8% responses In 2/3 of the trials the PP stuck to their
compliance and made by real PP were incorrect, so original option despite majority influence
internalisation, they conformed to the group. present.
going along with Asch interviewed some of the PPS This means that instead of Asch showing
others because you to see why they conformed, the human beings were overly conformist, he
have accepted their reasons were: showed that they had a tendency to stick to
POV, but only (1) Distortion of perception. what they believe.
because of a desire (2) Distortion of judgement.
to be like them.

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Difficulty: In one variation study, Asch made the differences between the line lengths
much smaller, and the level of conformity increased.
Lucas et al furthered this and found that PPS with lower confidence in their abilities
were less independent.
Situational and individual differences are important in determining conformity.
Size of the majority:
Asch found little conformity when the majority consisted of just 1-2 individuals.
Under the pressure of 3, the conformity of responses increases 30%.…read more

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Moscovichi: `'Calling a blue slide green'': Theory of Conversion:
To see if minority could influence a majority. Consistent
PPs given eye test to check they weren't colour-
Then put into groups of 4 PPs and 2
All shown 36 slides that were different shades of Lacked experimental realism- a slide test is not a very
believable test.
Lacked mundane realism- There was no reference to real
Asked to state the colour out loud.…read more

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Social Impact Theory:
Normative social influence: Informational Influence: Number: the more people present, the more
Result of wanting to be influence on individual.
Result of wanting to be Strength: the more important the people, the
right, so you look to
liked and part of group by influence they will have.
others for the answer.
following social norms.
Likely when the situation Immediacy: the more people present, the less
Allows a person to behave influence on any one individual, so more likely
is ambiguous.…read more

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Milgram Obedience Study:
Told PPs it was about the effects of punishment on
40 male PPs.
Deception and lack of informed consent.
As well as real PP, 2 confederates.
Right to withdraw not emphasised clearly.
Each time the learner got something wrong, a shock
Realism- there is a doubt about internal validity of
was administered.
Milgram'sstudy according to a psychologist, since
Learned gave wrong answers until silence at 300
participants tend to distrust experimenters.
volts.…read more

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Milgram's Study: Compared to the holocaust, Milgram's PPs
were assured that although the shocks may
Gradual Commitment: As the PPs gave lower shocks,
be painful, there is no permanent damage.
becomes hard to resist experiments requirement to
Despite these differences Milgram believed
increase shock level. Gradual commitment is where you
that the same psychological process, Agentic
cannot change your mind easily after committing to a
shift, was at work in both situations
cause, so must continue, e.g. `'foot in the door''.
(experiment and holocaust).…read more

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Resisting pressures to conform: Asch Resisting pressures to obey: Milgram
Role of allies: When study was moved from Yale to downtown office,
Dissident gave social support to individual, caused more people felt able to resist authority.
conformity to fall. Tells us that status is a key factor in resistance.
Shows that the presence of an ally is helpful in resisting Resistance also increases when other confederates were
conformity, but more so when they are perceived as offering present.
valid social support.…read more

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Locus of control:
Twenge et al:
External- outcomes outside your control.
Internal- outcomes within your control. Meta analysis.
High internals perceive themselves to have a high Found young Americans believed their lives were
degree of control over their behaviour, less likely to controlled by outside forced.
obey/conform. LOC scores have been substantially more external
High externals see their behaviour as caused by between 1960 and 2002.
external influences such as luck. Twenge.…read more

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Change from minority to majority may decrease satisfaction and
increase desire to leave group, e.g. South Africa, prislin et el.
Terrorism is a form of minority influence, leading to social change Blass carried out a statistical
through persistence and conformity to Zeitgeist- Kruglanski analysis of all of Milgram's
Obedience used as explanation for events during holocaust and ethnic obedience experiments and
cleansing- examples of social change, the replications conducted by
A disobedient model empowers others, e.g. civil rights. other researches.…read more


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