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Asch's 1951 study on majority influence.

¤To determine whether a majority can influence a minority even when the situation is

¤To find the effects of majority influence even if it's apparently obvious that the majority
have responded incorrectly.

¤Seven people all sat looking at a display. In…

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¤A majority can influence a minority even in an unambiguous situation in which the correct
answer is obvious.

¤Asch showed convincingly that pressure to conform in terms of majority influence is much
stronger than had been thought previously.

¤However, on about two-thirds of the crucial trials the genuine participant…

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Majority influence is when an individual adopts the beliefs of the most common/dominant
group as a result of group pressure. This can be because the individual wants to be right
(conversion), or because they want to fit in (compliance).

Why people conform:
*People may conform because they want to be…

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*An individual's behaviour can be predicted in terms of three factors:

Strength: Numbers of people present or consistency of message from one person.

Status + Knowledge: People are equally influenced by many amateurs or one expert.

Immediacy: How close you are to someone psychologically or physically.

A combination of those…

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Majority influence is when a person goes along with the most common/dominant group
because they want to fit in, and so they comply- even if they don't necessarily personally

Minority influence is when a person yields to the less common/dominant group, which is
usually because they internalise what the…

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¤To determine whether a minority can influence a majority of naive participants, and thus
reverse the usual direction of social influence.

¤Moscovici aimed to determine the conditions necessary for minority influence to occur. In
particular the necessity for them to be consistent in their opinions.

¤Participants were all…

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¤ The fact that minorities are more persuasive when they're consistent has implications for
people in leadership positions who are hoping to influence the majority.

¤The research lacked experimental realism, because the set up was not believable. The slide
test was artificial and may have yielded demand characteristics .Therefore…

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Obedience to authority:
When a person behaves as they are instructed, usually by an individual of authority/higher
status. This usually occurs within a hierarchy; with the person giving the order is of a higher
status than the person receiving it. Obedience occurs because the individual feels they must
obey. Unlikely…

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Milgram's 1963 study on obedience to authority

¤Milgram aimed to investigate how willing participants were to obey authority when asked
to inflict pain on another person.

¤He aimed to see whether he could set up a situation in which participants were more
obedient to authority than was generally believed…


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