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Discuss research into conformity - notes on Jenness, Asch , Perrin and Spencer.

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Introduction

´╗┐Discuss research into conformity (12 marks) 1. Conformity is yielding to group pressures. 2. There are two types of conformity such as compliance and internalization. 3. Compliance is when you conform to the group but privately maintain your own view. 4. Internalization is when you conform to the group but privately change your views to match those of the group. There have been many experiments in psychology investigating conformity and group pressure such as jenness. 1. Jenness was the first to study conformity. 2. His experiment was an ambiguous situation involving glass beans. 3. He asked participants individually to estimate how many beans were in the bottle and then put the group in the room with the bottle and asked them to provide a group estimate. ...read more.

Middle

2. It is easy to replicate however so it’s a reliable study. Ethical issues 1. deception 2. informed consent. Asch 1. Devised a perceptual line judgement task which is also known as the Asch Paradigm where participants had to indicate which three of the comparison lines matched the standard line. 2. There was 123 male students which were placed in groups of 7-9 and were seated around a large table. 3. All but one of the students were confederates. 4. The naïve participants was seated second to the end of the row. 5. Confederates gave unanimous wrong answers on 12 of the 18 trials. ...read more.

Conclusion

Methodological 1. Participants were male college students so was a limited sample and you cant generalize to other populations 2. Results may have been affected by time and place of study as in the 1950?s people in the usa were pressured to conform. Perrin and Spencer carried out the Asch paradigm in the UK using male undergraduate engineering students and they found only one incident of conformity in every 400 trials. Asch?s paradigm was a lab experiment so had 1. high control 2. easy to replicate 3. can prove cause and effect 4. lacks ecological validity. Ethical 1. Participants were deceived about the true aim of study. 2. Some experienced discomfort and anxiety and may have felt foolish at the debriefing which breaks ethical guidelines for protection of participants. ...read more.

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