Variables affecting conformity

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Who did a key study for variables affecting conformity, and when?
Asch, 1956
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Briefly outline procedure of study
123 male undergraduates, all but one were confederates (the "one" sat second to last). 3 lines comparison of size. on 12/18 trials - confederates gave same wrong answer.
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Briefly outline findings of study
On the 12 trials, average conformity was 33%. Interviewed afterwards to find that they were all going along with others (compliance)
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How does group size affect conformity?
There was little conformity when the group had 1/2 confederates. however, at 3 confederates, conformity rates jumped to 33%. However, the size of the majority only matters up to a certain point
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Who disagreed with this and what did they say? (HINT: think about how obvious the answers to the study was)
Campbell And Fairey, 1989 said that group size may have had a different effect depending on the judgement being made and the motivation of the individual.
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How does the unanimity of the majority affect conformity?
If the unanimity of the group is disturbed, conformity levels dropped from 33%-5%.
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How does the difficulty of the task affect conformity?
In one variation, Asch made the line lengths more similar which means that being correct was much harder - this meant that conformity levels increased.
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EVALUATION: Asch's research may be 'a child of its time'?
Asch's research took place at a time where conformity was high-1956, Mccarthyism era. A strong, anti-communist period where people didn't want to go against the majority.
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Who proposed evidence to support this evaluation?
1980,Perrin&Spencer repeated study in UK on science and engineering students. 1/396 conformed when confederates gave unanimously wrong answers. A second study used youths and probation officers, and it showed similar conformity levels to Asch's study
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EVALUATION: Problems with determining the effects of group size
Bond 2005 suggested a limitation of the research into these studies have only used a limited range of majority sizes, and haven't used any sizes of more than 9.
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EVALUATION: Independent behaviour rather than conformity
On 2/3 of trials, people stuck to their own judgement.
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Card 2

Front

Briefly outline procedure of study

Back

123 male undergraduates, all but one were confederates (the "one" sat second to last). 3 lines comparison of size. on 12/18 trials - confederates gave same wrong answer.

Card 3

Front

Briefly outline findings of study

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

How does group size affect conformity?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Who disagreed with this and what did they say? (HINT: think about how obvious the answers to the study was)

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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