Social Influence Notes

Shortened notes on the social influence part of the psychology aqa course.

There is a bit in it that says "Asch Effect???" - i didn't quite understand this so left it blank for my teacher to explain to me and never got the chance to fill it in. I hope the rest will help with your revision though :)

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  • Created on: 23-08-12 13:24
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3 Types of Conformity (Kelman)
Conformity: Form of Social Influence. Tendency for people to adopt behaviour, attitudes, values of
other members of a group.

1) Compliance
Going along with others to gain their approval/avoid their disapproval.
public compliance; little/no private attitude change
2) Internalisation
Acceptance of majorities point of view,…

Page 2

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confident in own abilities) remained more independent that low-self-efficacy ppts, even under high
difficulty tasks. Shows self-efficacy important in conformity.

Size of the Majority
1/2 individuals = very little conformity
3 individuals = 30% conformity
Increases from 3 = did increase conformity but not substantially (indicates size important up to…

Page 3

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Asch Effect???

Conformity or Independence
2/3's stuck to own opinion despite faced by majority dif view.
Asch believed rather than showing people of be conformist, his study demonstrated a
commendable tendency to show independent behaviour.

- Only men; cannot be generalised
- Real word applications: conformity big problems in juries.…

Page 4

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Limitations:
1) Task may have been more meaningful for one culture than the other
2) Cultures are not homogenous & differences between individualist and collectivist values
within different cultures have been established in other research.

Individual Difference:
Collectivist cultures more likely to yield to majority than individualistic.
Individualistic: behaviour determined…

Page 5

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Assumes that individuals are motivated to reduce conflict cause by minority influence.
Therefore examine minority's argument to understand why they do not agree with their
opinion.
Majority influence: individuals less likely to analyse opposite argument, adjust own
attitudes in order to conform.
Minority influence: attention on content of argument rather…

Page 6

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- The situation is ambiguous e.g. the right course of action is not clear.
- The situation is a crisis e.g. rapid action is required
- We believe others to be experts e.g. we believe others more likely to know what to do.

Evaluation:
?? Fein et al (supports role…

Page 7

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To see if ordinary people will obey legitimate authority, even when told to injure an innocent
person.

Procedure:
- 40 male ppts, paid $4.50
- 2 confederates, experimenor, learner
- Drew lots to become `teacher and learner' (ppts always ended up as teacher)
- Teacher shocks the learner for a…

Page 8

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When fake teachers refused to carry on, ppts did too, 4/40 carried on to last level.
- Ppts used defiance of other peers to stop themselves from causing further harm to victim.

Increasing teacher's discretion
Level of shock left to ppts discretion:
- 2.5% (1/40) delivered max shock
- 95%…

Page 9

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they acknowledge true purpose is disguised.
- Vast majority believed they were giving shocks, the victims distress was real.

Generalisability
- Hoffling et al: nurses phoned by `Dr. Smith' to give patient 20mg of a drug.
Hospital regulations specifically state, no order over phone & dosage was double tha
recommended.…

Page 10

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- Due to their commitment it became hard to go back on it.
- It is a method of persuasion also known as `foot-in-the-door'

Agentic Shift
- The state a person is in when he sees himself as an agent for carrying out someone else's
wishes; basically working for them.…

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