Milgram and his Variations

Milgram's Original Study

Aim

  • Investigate the level of obedience when told by an authoritative figure to give electric shocks.
  • Investigate "Germans are different" hypothesis (the assumption that the Germans obeyed because of blind obedience, not because of who they were).

Procedure

  • The sample was self selected via a newspaper ad. It consisted of 40 men aged between 20 and 50. They were from various occupational backgrounds, all from the New Haven area of America. The method used was a lab based study. 
  • Milgram investigated what people thought would occur. Fourteen Yale psychology seniors predicted that 0-3% would go up to 450V.
  • At the beginning of the study a lot was drawn whereby the participant always became the teacher.
  • The stooge/confederate was then taken into another room where they were strapped into a chair and electrodes were attached to them - this was done in front of the participant so that they thought it was real.
  • The volt generator ranged from 15V - 450V.
  • The learning task involved the subject reading a series of word pairs to learner, and then read the first word of the pair alon with four terms. Every time an incorrect response was given, the ppt was required to give the learner an electric shock, the voltage increased each time.
  • Verbal prods were used to encourage ppts to continue whenever they showed moral strain.

Results

Of the 40 subjects, 5 refused to obey the experimental commands beyond the 300V level. Four more ppts administered one further shock, and then refused to go on. Two broke off at the 330V level and 1 each at 345V, 360V and 375V. A total of 14 subjects defied the experimenter.

  • 26/40 went up to 450V.
  • All ppts went up to 300V.
  • 5 refused after 300V.
  • Those who went the full way demonstrated extreme stress and 14/40 showed nervous laughing/smiling.

Conclusion 

Milgram argued that an important factor influencing behaviour is the situation the person is in. 

  • The study was designed to look like a worthy purpose and to advance knowledge in understanding learning…

Comments

No comments have yet been made

Similar Psychology resources:

See all Psychology resources »See all Approaches resources »

Milgram and his Variations

Milgram's Original Study

Aim

  • Investigate the level of obedience when told by an authoritative figure to give electric shocks.
  • Investigate "Germans are different" hypothesis (the assumption that the Germans obeyed because of blind obedience, not because of who they were).

Procedure

  • The sample was self selected via a newspaper ad. It consisted of 40 men aged between 20 and 50. They were from various occupational backgrounds, all from the New Haven area of America. The method used was a lab based study. 
  • Milgram investigated what people thought would occur. Fourteen Yale psychology seniors predicted that 0-3% would go up to 450V.
  • At the beginning of the study a lot was drawn whereby the participant always became the teacher.
  • The stooge/confederate was then taken into another room where they were strapped into a chair and electrodes were attached to them - this was done in front of the participant so that they thought it was real.
  • The volt generator ranged from 15V - 450V.
  • The learning task involved the subject reading a series of word pairs to learner, and then read the first word of the pair alon with four terms. Every time an incorrect response was given, the ppt was required to give the learner an electric shock, the voltage increased each time.
  • Verbal prods were used to encourage ppts to continue whenever they showed moral strain.

Results

Of the 40 subjects, 5 refused to obey the experimental commands beyond the 300V level. Four more ppts administered one further shock, and then refused to go on. Two broke off at the 330V level and 1 each at 345V, 360V and 375V. A total of 14 subjects defied the experimenter.

  • 26/40 went up to 450V.
  • All ppts went up to 300V.
  • 5 refused after 300V.
  • Those who went the full way demonstrated extreme stress and 14/40 showed nervous laughing/smiling.

Conclusion 

Milgram argued that an important factor influencing behaviour is the situation the person is in. 

  • The study was designed to look like a worthy purpose and to advance knowledge in understanding learning…

Comments

No comments have yet been made