Conformity & Obedience

Social Psychology
Unit 14
Social Psychology
The scientific study of how we think about, influence and
relate to one another.
 Sociology – the study of society
 Social behavior
 Social structure
 Social institutions
Adjusting one’s behavior or thinking to coincide with a group
 Which line is identical
to the standard line?
 After 4 people chose
line 3, the fifth person
 The act or practice of obeying or complying.
 Behaving as expected; good behavior.
 Dutiful or submissive.
Milgram Experiment
 Study on the effect of
punishment on learning.
 “Teacher” & “Learner”
 Teacher is to teach the
learner a list of words and
deliver brief electric shocks
for wrong answers (beginning
with slight shock and
increasing in higher voltage).
 Controversy
 Deception and stress –
“learners” were acting.
Milgram Experiment
 Brief Original Video
 Video Clip #1: Obedience - Original Experiment
 Video Clip #2: Obedience - Original Experiment
 Video Clip #3: Obedience - Original Experiment
 Handout 14-3
Milgram Experiment
 Predictions
 40 psychiatrists predicted less than
10% would comply all the way through
to the highest voltage.
 Participants completed a survey prior to
the experiment.
 Most declared they would stop soon after
the “learner” first indicated pain and certainly
before he shrieked in agony.
Milgram Experiment
 Results
 63% complied fully – right up to the last switch.
 In a repeated experiment in which the “learner” mentioned a
“slight heart condition”, still 65% complied fully.
Milgram Experiment
 Obedience was highest when…
 the person giving the order was close at hand and was perceived
to be a legitimate authority figure.
 the authority figure was supported by a prestigious institution.
 the victim was depersonalized or at a distance.
 there were no role models for defiance.
Milgram Experiment
What is the significance of this experiment?
What does it teach us about ourselves?
 Moral sense warned them not to harm another, yet it also
prompted them to obey the experimenter.
 Strong social influences can make people conform to
falsehoods or capitulate to cruelty.
 Great evils sometimes grow out of people’s compliance with
lesser evils.
12 Angry Men
Via YouTube:
 Part 1/12
 Part 7/12
 Part 2/12
 Part 8/12
 Part 3/12
 Part 9/12
 Part 4/12
 Part 10/12
 Part 5/12
 Part 11/12
 Part 6/12
 Part 12/12