Discuss the role of social support and locus of control in resisting social influence

  • Social support is when a person feels that they have assistence available from other people and that they are part of a supportive network. 
  • Asch found that social support enables an individual to resist conformity pressure from the majority. 
  • He introduced an ally, and found that social support reduced levels of conformity from 33% to 5.5%.
  • This occurs due to a break in the unanimity of the majority which raises the possibility that there are others legitimate answers. Makes the individual more confident in their own answer. 
  • Social support also has an affect on obedience.
  • This is often because it is difficult to stand against authority because obedient behaviour by others makes even a harmful action seem acceptable. 
  • Therefore the defience of peers is an opportunity to stop causing harm.
  • Milgram did a variation, where he had three people, two who were confederates, conduct the electric shocks together. When both of the confederates refused to continue, only 10% went to maximum shock level.
  • However, when it comes to social support, there is importance in the order. 
  • Allen and Levine found that when resisting the majoirty, if a confederate gave an answer first, before…


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