Unit 5 Assignment 3: the Milgram Experiment

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U5A3 SP3450 - Social Psychology Unit 5 Assignment 3: The Milgram Experiment 01/22/14 Milgram Experiment A psychologist from Yale University named Stanley Milgram conducted the Milgram obedience experiment. He wanted to see the participant’s willingness to obey an authority figure while testing their moral conscience. In the experiment they were told that they would be either a “teacher” or a “learner” and would be randomly be assigned to either role. However unbeknownst to them all the slips said teacher and people aware of the study acted like they got the learner slip. The teacher was given a list of words that he read to the learner. The learner was supposed to memorize these pairings. After reading the list the teacher went back and said only the first word of each pair and then read four possible choices of what the other word was. The learner had to choose out of these four by pressing a button. If he was wrong the teacher shocked him. The shocks went up in fifteen-volt increments for each wrong answer. This tested the moral conscience of the teacher because eventually the screams from the shocks stopped, leading the teacher to believe that the learner had died or was seriously hurt. No matter how many times the teacher said he wanted to stop, the administer of the test told him to continue. By no means did he have to continue but because the authority figure told him to, he did. Obedience of authority is simply people in charge telling others what to do and them doing it. This has been ongoing for years, and especially apparent in World War II with Hitler demanding the Nazis and death camps to kill all of the Jews. Even with famous history, it is still said that people will not obey authority if doing so with affect negatively another person like with injury. Milgram’s experiments proved otherwise. Milgram asked a group of
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