conformity to assigned roles: Zimbardo et al (1973).
method: male prisoners were recruited to act as either guards or prisoners in a mock prison. they were randomly given the roles of prisoner or guard, and behaviour was observed. prisoners were 'arrested' at home, taken to 'prison' and given uniforms and numbers. guards wore uniforms and mirrored sunglasses.
results: initially, the guards tried to assert their authority and the prisoners resisted by sticking together. prisoners became more passive and obedient, while guards invented nastier punishments. the experiment was abandoned early because some prisoners became very distressed.
conclusion: guards and prisoners adopted their social roles quickly. Zimbardo claims this shows that our social role can influence our behaviour- seemingly well-balanced men became unpleasant/aggressive in role of guard.
evaluation: controlled observation-good control of variables, cant be generalised, distressing experience & ind. differences may affect results.
study of obedience: Milgram (1963)
method: milgram tested whether people would obey orders to shock someone else in a seperate room if told to do so by someone in authority-took place at yale university. 40 men took part,newspaper ads seeking volunteers of a study on 'learning & memory'. paid for attending,experimenter wore grey technicians coat,each pp was always 'teacher'. introduced to confederate, drew lots to see which roles they would take but fixed.witnessed confederate being strapped to chair and connected to a shock generator.in another room, the switches ranged from 15V- labelled 'slight shock' to 450V-labelled 'XXX).teacher would ask learner questions,when made a mistake the pp would shock them.as the shocks increased, the learner would start to 'scream', & after 330V, he made no further noise.if pp hesitated,experimenter would tell them to continue. debriefing included, an interview,questionnaires and a reunion with 'learner'.
results: 65% administered 450V, none stopped before 300V,(when learner protested), showed signs of stress and anxiety through out.
conclusion: ordinary people will obey orders to hurt someone else, even if it means acting against their consciences.
biological model of abnormality.
what- it assumes that pyschological disorders are physical illness with physical causes. similar to common colds.