Psychology Case Studies Piliavin

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  • Created by: Melissa
  • Created on: 30-10-13 14:05
Piliavin's research method
Field experiment (Had IV's and DV's but experiment took place in natural location (NY Subway)).
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Piliavin's independent variables were...
Type of victim (ill or drunk); Race of victim (black or white); Presence of helping models; Size of witnessing group.
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Piliavin's dependent variables were...
Number and speed of helpers; Race and gender of helpers; Movement out of critical area; Verbal comments.
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Piliavin's controls
Same train route; Roles within teams; Collapse time (70 seconds in to journey); Appearance of victim; Help times from model; Time of day (11am - 3pm); Position of team members in carriage
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Piliavin's sample
Approx. 4450 unsolicited subjects; 55% white and 45% black; Mean number of people in carriage over all trials 45; Mean number of people in critical area 8.5).
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Piliavin's sampling method
Opportunity sample (whoever was on the train at the time of the trials).
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Strengths of Piliavin's sample
Large sample size and good variation of types of people
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Weaknesses of Piliavin's sample
All got something in common - large part of the population wouldn't be on the train at that time so not representative; Some participants may have seen the experiment more than once
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Strengths of Piliavin's sampling method
Quick; Convenient, Cheap; No demand characteristics (natural behaviour since they don't know they're being observed).
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Weaknesses of Piliavin's sampling method
Participants hadn't given consent or were debriefed afterwards making it unethical.
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Quantitative results from Piliavin's study
62/65 helped on cane trials with avg help time of 5 seconds compared to 19/38 people helping on drunk trials with avg time of 109 seconds; 90% of the helpers were male; 34 people left the critical area over all the trials.
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Qualitative results from Piliavin's study
From women about why they weren't helping - "It's for men to help" and "You feel so bad you don't know what to do.
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Explanation of Piliavin's study
Diffusion of responsibility wasn't apparent as help was given quickly. Instead, witnessing the fall caused arousal in the passengers. The costs/rewards influenced the decision to help. Less costs and more rewards for helping ill person.
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Ethical guidelines for Piliavin's study
UPHELD: Confidentiality; BROKEN: Deception, Consent, Debrief, Harm, Withdrawal
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Piliavin's study has HEV because...
It was conducted on the NY Subway and the passengers didn't know they were being observed so they didn't show demand characteristics; Often see people fall.
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Piliavin's study has LEV because...
Not usually in a confined space when people fall.
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Was Piliavin's study reliable?
Yes because it was standardised so the procedure could be replicated and there were a lot of controls used. The results were consistent too.
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Was Piliavin's study accurate?
No because it doesn't take into consideration people's circumstances (injured, pregnant etc) and it ignores the historical context and racist views.
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Change Piliavin's location
Subway to Street as confined train may have meant different levels of help - More ethical (able to withdraw); Harder to observe and quantify people - Less help (able to continue walking).
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Change the gender of the victim in Piliavin's study
Male and female - More generalisable and useful - More help in general because women help women; Costs associated with helping women are less.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


Piliavin's independent variables were...


Type of victim (ill or drunk); Race of victim (black or white); Presence of helping models; Size of witnessing group.

Card 3


Piliavin's dependent variables were...


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Card 4


Piliavin's controls


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Card 5


Piliavin's sample


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