Social Experiment

Social Science: broad field of study that looks at
human behaviour
 Three disciplines: anthropology, psychology and
 Typically social experiments investigate how
someone's behaviour influences a groups behaviour or
internal states, such as attitude or self-concept.
Read more:
If someone was attractive
would you think they are more
The halo effect is the bias
where the perception of one
trait (i.e. a characteristic of a
person or object) is influenced
by the perception of another
trait (or several traits) of that
person or object
An example: good-looking
person = intelligent
Cognitive dissonance is an
uncomfortable feeling caused
by holding conflicting ideas
 People reduce dissonance
(discomfort) by changing their
attitudes, beliefs, and actions
 Studies show that we can
change our beliefs very easily
Robber’s Cave:
A group of twenty-two 11 year old
boys were taken to camp at
Robber’s Cave State Park,
Oklahoma and formed two rival
Both saw the other as members of
an “outgroup” or rivals
Eventually made peace
However....the happy ending was
only achieved after the experiment
was performed three times!
Stanford Prison Experiment
What makes a person evil? Can
a good person commit evil
acts? If so, what can make
people cross the line?
 Students were asked to play
role of guards/prisoners
 Experiment stopped after only
6 days!
measured the willingness of people to obey
an authority figure even if it hurt someone
In the original 1963 experiment 65%
continued with the experiment to the final
massive 450 volt shock
People tend to think other’s think exactly like
they do and that their opinions views are
People project their thinking on to others
Henry Tajfel experiment
14 and 15 year-old boys, were brought into
the lab and shown slides of paintings by two
Formed two groups, boys were asked to
distribute virtual money and all the boys
favoured their own in-group even though
they never met!
Would you help him?
Studies show that if
your in a crowd you
most like WILL NOT
Which line is bigger?
Soloman Asch
 76% of people denied
their own senses by
choosing either A or B
Try one today! Make up a fake news
story...see what happens!
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