Research Into Conformity Evaluation

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Q2: Evaluate research into conformity, obedience and discuss ethical implications of the research. This essay will evaluate the studies on why people conform, obey and be independent then discuss the ethical implications involved in the research. The main studies to be evaluated will be Asch (1951), Milgram (1963),Baumrind (1964), Hofling et Al(1966) and Orne and Holland (1968) Asch (1951) conducted a conformity experiment to see if a naive participant, seated second to last in a room with six confederates, would give an obvious wrong answer to a simple question. 74% conformed at least once and 32% conformed on average. The real participant was seated second to last when giving his answer because it put additional pressure on the subject…show more content…
Rules such as: deception, protection of participants and the right to withdraw. Participants were deceived by description of task because he did not want to give away the true nature of the experiment. Participants believed they were investigating punishment and learning to which they gave full consent but the study was on obedience. However before undertaking the experiment Milgram spoke with psychiatrists to determine whether people would be obedient and follow the instructions, they predicted that most subjects would not go above 150 volts, while 4% could be expected to reach 300 volts. The results contradicted the prediction and 65% of normal working class men continued to the maximum voltage. Despite the participants having the right to withdraw the experimenter prompted them with one of four statements, all encouraging them to keep continuing the punishment even when the learner mentioned his heart condition. If they refused to give any more shocks despite repeated commands the experiment was stopped. The participants had the freedom to leave at any stage of the experiment but his was not openly communicated to the subjects. After the study had concluded the subjects were de-briefed and told the true nature of the experiment. They met with the learner so they could see he was fine and had come to no harm however this did not take into account the psychological stress caused during the experiment when they had been led to believe they had killed someone by giving them 450 volt shock. During the study Milgram did take into account some ethnical implications, however by deceiving and encouraging the participants to continue despite the consequences was not ethical and the study should not have been allowed to continue. He was unable to determine the mental state of the participants as the information given at the start of the study by the
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