Social Psychology - Studies in detail (Hofling et al, Tajfel et al and Sherif et al)

Notes based on the studies you need to know for the edexcel specification including:

  • Detailed explanation of Hofling et al (1966)
  • Evaluation of Hofling et al
  • Detailed explanation of Tajfel et al (1971)
  • Evaluation of Tajfel et al
  • Detailed explanation of Sherif et al (1961)
  • Evaluation of Sherif et al
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Experimental study in nurse-physician
relationships (Hofling et al, 1966)
Aim:
To investigate aspects of a nurse-physician relationship,
specifically what happens when ordered to do something
which goes against hospital regulations and a nurses own
professional standards.…read more

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Experimental study in nurse-physician
relationships (Hofling et al, 1966)
Method:
· Three hospitals in the Midwest of the USA with one hospital acting
as a control.
· Twelve graduate nurses, and 21 student nurses were asked to fill
out a questionnaire about what they would do if confronted with an
experimental situation.
· 22 nurses from the other two hospitals doing normal duties were
targeted for the actual field experiment and put into the following
position. While alone on the ward, they receive a phone call from an
unknown doctor.
1. The nurse is asked to give an overdose of a drug to a patient (it
was a placebo)
2. The medication order is given over the phone by the doctor
(hospital policy requires such orders are given in person)
3. The drug is unauthorised for use on the ward where she is
working.
4. The order is given by an unfamiliar voice.…read more

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Experimental study in nurse-physician
relationships (Hofling et al, 1966)
Method continued:
· The researchers placed fake pills inside bottles labelled
Astroten 5mg capsules among the wards drugs.
· Dosage instructions were clearly marked.
· A written script was used by the `doctor' to standardise the
conversation and all conversations were recorded.
· The experiment ended when; the nurse complied and
went to issue the medicine; refused consistently to give
the medicine; went to get advice; became emotionally
upset or if the call went on for more than 10 minutes.
· A researcher debriefed the nurse within half an hour.…read more

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Experimental study in nurse-physician
relationships (Hofling et al, 1966)
Results (questionnaire):
· 10/12 graduate nurses and all 21 students said they would not
have given the medication.
· Most believed other nurses would behave in the same way.
Results (experimental situation):
· 21/22 nurses (95%) started to give the medication.
· The calls were generally brief without any resistance from the
nurses.
· During the debriefing, only 11 nurses were aware of the dosage
limits for Astroten
· None became hostile to the caller and nearly all admitted that
they knew they shouldn't have followed these orders as it is
against hospital policy ­ it was a fairly common occurrence.…read more

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Experimental study in nurse-physician
relationships (Hofling et al, 1966)
Conclusions:
Nurses will knowingly break hospital rules in a situation
where a doctor tells them too, even if it could endanger a
patients life.…read more

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