• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Outline what is meant by 'culture bias' and describe culture bias in two or more psychological studies

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Outline what is meant by 'culture bias' and describe culture bias in two or more psychological studies Culture bias is a term which covers several types of bias in psychology. It can be used to refer to judgements and prejudices about certain cultures, or methodological biases which lead to such biased conclusions. For example, although a method of research may be developed and found to be reliable in one culture, the same may not be true in another. Culture bias in methodology prevents us from being able to identify innate behaviour in cross-cultural research. One type of culture bias is ethnocentrism, which is the tendency to use one's own culture as a basis for judgements about others. Eurocentrism, ethnocentrism from the perspective of Western cultures, is particularly widespread in modern Psychology, as it is commonplace for findings based solely on, for example, American participants to be generalised to people across the globe. The relevance of psychological research carried out in Western countries to the wider world is questionnable. ...read more.

Middle

The classifications drawn by Ainsworth & Bell are also culturally biased, because they explicitly state which type of attachment is desirable (secure) and which types are undesirable (insecure). This, combined with the eurocentrism of the methodology itself, has led to parenting styles and infant attachments in some cultures to be mislabelled as inferior to those of the United States, and yet no significant negative effects related to attachments have been observed in such cultures. Another study frequently criticised for eurocentrism is Milgram's (1963) study into obedience, in which participants were deceived into believing that they were required to administer high-voltage electric shocks to a confederate. In a Smith & Bond's (1998) comparison of replications of the same study in different cultures, it was shown that there were differences between cultures in how many people obeyed the researcher in the experiment. For example, 65% of Americans, compared with 85% of Germans, 40% of Australian males, 16% of Australian females and 62% of Jordanians conformed. This indicates cultural differences, meaning that the Milgram's conclusions may hold cultural bias; but at the same time such cultural differences may not actually exist. ...read more.

Conclusion

However, placing a culture on the 'individualism-collectivism continuum' is not as easy as first thought. In relationship theories, the US if often cited as an individualist culture and Japan as a collectivist culture; but when Takano & Osaka (1999) reviewed 15 studies to compare the two nations, only 14 studies supported the distinction. This indicates that even relationship theories which allow for differences between individualist and collectivist cultures are biased because they underestimate the role of situational factors and overestimate that of personal characteristics when analysing of behaviour. Another theory frequently noted for its culture bias is Kohlberg's (1976) theory of moral understanding. This stage theory describes morality from a very Western, democratic perspective. However, these morals may not be held in other parts of the world, meaning that the theory may lack relevance in the wider world. When Snarey (1985) studied traditional village societies, only the first four stages from Kohlberg's theory were found to be present, with the stage post-conventional reasoning being completely absent. On fact, it was fount that many moral judgements from some cultures did not fit into any of Kohlberg's stages, suggesting that his theory does not account for other forms of reasoning. Clive Newstead ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Social Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a star student thought of this essay

5 star(s)

Response to the question

This is an excellent essay. The candidate forms a very clear, profound and precise essay about the presence of culture biases (particularly ethnocentrism and more specifically eurocentrism) with regard to even the most important, ground-breaking research (e.g. Milgram, Kohlberg). There ...

Read full review

Response to the question

This is an excellent essay. The candidate forms a very clear, profound and precise essay about the presence of culture biases (particularly ethnocentrism and more specifically eurocentrism) with regard to even the most important, ground-breaking research (e.g. Milgram, Kohlberg). There is evidence of a thorough understanding also of the reasons why this research was carried out, and the practical issues the arise as a result of eurocentric mindsets in methodology. All the points raises are reasoned well with a deft hand at applying important psychological terminology to them in order to fortify their argument, giving the examiner indication of confidence and comfortability when evaluating psychology. For future reference, another useful study to use is Gould/Yerkes' 'Nation of Morons' study, in which hugely biased methodological flaws led over 1.75M participants to be incorrectly tested for intelligence due to tests that were biased towards American/Western cultural general knowledge.

Level of analysis

The Level of Analysis is very prescriptive, and this is to be expected, as most psychology essay require a rigid structure in order write all the important details down in the time/word limit assigned. So there is by no means any bad analysis here - all of it is perfectly valid, well-cited and uses a plethora of psychological evidence as support that the factors contributing to cultural biases they argue do exist. The use of so many studies can only improve the answer. Not only to they make the analysis more trustworthy - it shows the examiner the candidate has good revision skills and has possibly conducted external research to help with their answer.

Quality of writing

The Quality of Written Communication is good from both an English and Psychology perspective. From an English perspective, the candidate makes few, if any, errors in grammar, only very minor errors in spelling and no errors in punctuation. The errors in spelling simply consist of the candidate misplacing one letter for another - a basic typing error "fount", made within the last three lines - this is easily picked up by a spell-checker and must not be left unattended. From a Psychology perspective the candidate makes a good use of valid and appropriate terminology. This is a real bonus if candidate's can apply expert terminology so confidently, as it makes your answer more accurate but also more fluid, and therefore interesting to read (which is appreciated by any examiner).


Did you find this review helpful? Join our team of reviewers and help other students learn

Reviewed by sydneyhopcroft 10/08/2012

Read less
Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Social Psychology essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The effect of the Level of Processing on the amount of information recalled

    4 star(s)

    According to their model, information is passed from STM to LTM through the process of rehearsal or repetition. The results supports this, the more the words have been rehearsed in the mind, the better the frequency of recall. Craik and Lockhart claimed that the idea of rehearsal did not explain whether or not material became stored in LTM.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    What are ideal types? How useful are they in helping us to understand contemporary ...

    In response to positivist objections about the use of subjective information, Weber reminds us again that "there is no absolutely 'objective' scientific analysis of culture or...of 'social phenomena' independent of special and 'one-sided' view points according to which-expressly or tacitly, consciously or unconsciously-they are selected, analysed and organised for expository purposes" (Coser, 1977, pg.219-222).

  1. Psychological Theories Of Crime

    His experiment did not take into consideration those who had been adopted at birth or those conceived through surrogacy. A lot of children are placed into day care during the working week and these children have grown to live crime free lives.

  2. An Investigation to see whether the halo effect is present when rating personality ...

    After another minute was timed on the Sony Ericsson W810i stopwatch participants were again asked to put down there pens and turn over their pieces of paper. They were then asked again if they would like to withdraw from the investigation and their results be discarded.

  1. Research Methodology - Quantitative and Qualitative methods.

    Collaborative conversations between the interviewer and the respondent 2. Rapport to encourage discussions on ideas and opinions 3. Primer questions => used to encourage the respondent to start talking 4. Requires very good interviewing skills and requires tape recording (r) Types of Interview * One-to-one Interview * Focus on one person * More formal and structured * Conversational Interview

  2. Parkers participant observation describes The Boys everyday lives but what else does it do? ...

    natural surroundings where they would behave as they normally would, '...because by visiting the deviants in prison, borstal and other 'human zoos' or by cornering them in classrooms to answer questionnaires, the sociologist misses meeting them as people in their normal society'.

  1. Persuasion Theory.

    However, these credibility effects can be reinstated simply by reminding the audience who said what. Overall, however, most of the opinion change obtained was short term rather than long term. Thus, while it is not difficult to change opinion immediately after a persuasive communication, when the change is measured a

  2. Obedience & Conformity: The Situation In Abu Ghraib

    Understanding group dynamics is important to understand how the guards united together and encouraged one another to inflict brutal torture to the detainees. In the Abu Ghraib situation the group dynamic of the guards had a dramatically change on how the separate individuals act in the groups from when they were alone.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work