Reaching a Verdict


Reaching a Verdict

  • Stages and influences on decision making- Hastie 
  • Majority Influence- Asch
  • Minority Influence- Moscovici
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  1. Orientation Period: Setting of the agenda, relaxed and open discussion and airing of different opinions.
  2. Open Confrontation Period: Fierce debate, focus on the details of the crime, exploring different interpretations, pressure on the minority to conform and establishing of support for the group decision.
  3. Reconciliation Period: Once a decision is reached, there is an attempt to smooth over the conflicts that emerged during the confrontation period.
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Aim: Investigate extent to which social pressure from a mojority group could affect a person to conform

Procedure: Lab experiment; 123 male students from Swarthmroe College; Used a vision test; He put Naive individual in a room with 4-6 confederates; Each confederate had to give a verbal repsonse to which of the lines A,B,C was most like target line; All have the wrong answer; Real participant at the end of the row gave incorrect answer 12 out of 18 trials

Results: 32% gave incorrect answer on critical trials

Conclusion: 2 Reasons for conforming:

  1. Want to fit in with the group = Normative influences
  2. Group better informed than they are = Informational influences 
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Aim: To exmaine minority influence and compare impact of consistent minority and inconsistent minority on the views of the majority 

Sample: females

Method: Experimental method

Procedure: Eye test to make sure they were not colour blind; Placed in a group of 6, 4, 2 confederates; Shown 36 slides of different shaded of blue and asked to state colour aloud; Participants told experiment was based on colour perception; Confederates consistant and answered green in 1st part; 2nd part = inconsistant and answered green 24 times and blue 12 times

Results: Minority can influence majority; Much more effective when minority are consistent 

Conclusion: Consistency is vital for minority influence to occur; If minority consistantly give same answer they are more likely to sway a majority 

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