Social Influence - Beauchamp Psychology

Social Psychology
Miss Bird
Homework due
Research and make notes on the key
study on minority influence by
Moscovici et al (1969) - APFCC.
Complete the 4-mark past-exam
question on conformity (blue
OVERVIEW: Conformity
Sometimes we conform to ‘fit-in’ with
those around us – COMPLIANCE.
Sometimes we are not sure of the right
way to think or act so we use others as
a source of information and accept
their viewpoint– INTERNALISATION.
Exam information
In the exam you may be asked: 1)
‘Types of conformity’ – compliance
and internalisation.
Explanations of why people obey –
normative social influence and
informational social influence.
Explanations of why
people conform
Normative social influence –
‘follow the crowd.’
Informational social influence –
accept majority viewpoint as
most likely to be right.
Normative Social Influence
It is possible to behave like the majority
without accepting its point of view.
COMPLIANCE = Public agreement but no
private attitude change.
A majority may be able to control other
group members by making it difficult for
them to deviate from the majority point of
view, thus exerting pressure on them to
‘Fit-in,’ ‘acceptance,’ ‘approval.’
Evaluation of NSI
Research has shown how many groups with a
low quality of interpersonal friendships may be
manipulated by a skilful bully so that
victimisation of another child provides the
group with a common goal.
This exerts pressure on all group members to
comply (for fear of being rejected themselves).
Evaluation of NSI
Marketing campaigns aimed at educating
young people about what is normative in a
particular group have been successful in
reducing the incidence of risk behaviours
(alcohol abuse and smoking).
Social norms bring about conformity.
Strong link between people’s normative beliefs
and their behaviour.
Campaign aimed at 12-17 year olds – only 10%
of non-smokers subsequently took up smoking
following exposure to a message that most
children in their age group did not smoke.
Evaluation of NSI
Conservation behaviour
Aim: persuade hotel guests to reuse their towels
rather than having fresh ones every day.
132 hotels – 794 rooms – guests in 1 week.
Rooms randomly assigned to either experimental or
control condition.
Control – door hanger informing guests of
environmental benefits of reusing their towels.
Experimental – door hanger + informed that ‘75% of
our guests choose to reuse their towels each day.’
Guests who received additional message that
contained normative information about other
guests reduced their need for fresh towels by 25%!
Informational Social Influence
Individuals go along with others because
they believe them to be right.
Use them as a source of information.
Don’t just comply in behaviour but also
change own point of view.
INTERNALISATION = changes to both
public and private attitudes.
Informational Social Influence
ISI more likely if: 1.
Situation ambiguous (right course of
action unclear).
Situation is crisis (rapid action needed).
We believe others to be experts (more
likely to know what to do).
Independent task
Complete the gap fill exercise in your
booklet on the evaluation of ISI.
You have 5 minutes in silence.
Be prepared to feedback to the class.
Independent task
On A3 paper, draw a mindmap of the
two explanations for why people
conform (NSI and ISI).
You have 20 minutes.
Exam focus
January 2011
Complete the past-exam question in
your booklets.
It is worth 6 marks.
No notes!
You have 6 minutes in silence.
Try and write a model answer.