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Stanley Milgrams Obedience to Authority study and the Stanford Prison Experiment both show that everyday people react in ways we find unimaginable when put in certain situations.

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Introduction

Ricky C. Camus / BSAT3-2 February 6, 2012 Obedience to Authority Stanley Milgram's Obedience to Authority study and the Stanford Prison Experiment both show that everyday people react in ways we find unimaginable when put in certain situations. The Stanley Milgram's Obedience to Authority study tested how people would respond to an authority figure who told them to do something that conflicted with their personal beliefs. The Stanford Prison Experiment studied the effects of being a prison guard or prisoner. While both studies may be very unethical today, I believe they both show that everyone is likely to act, possibly, in an unethical manner depending on the situation. These studies, in current society's views, would be extremely unethical; especially the Prison Experiment. ...read more.

Middle

Maybe we can empathize more with people because of the information gained. However, I don't see it as being worth the damage it did to others' lives. The results of the studies I find to be interesting. Many people believe they are different than everyone else. We are even raised that way so we don't feel bad about all of our physical and occasional mental differences; even to the extent that people start to deny that they would act in a way they find unethical when put in the same or similar situation as another person who acted in an unethical manner. These studies showed that people act in a possible set manner, no matter who they are. ...read more.

Conclusion

When this happens it becomes even harder to resist doing something unethical because everyone else is doing it so the thought might be 'It can't be that bad right?'That is for you to decide, not me. I can't tell you what is right and what is wrong. It's all a matter of opinion. In conclusion, I feel that Stanley Milgram's Obedience to Authority study and the Stanford Prison Experiment, while being unethical, both showed that people are not necessarily as different as we are brought up to believe. In fact, people are quite similar. I don't believe that these tests will be conducted again now or in the near future because of the distress it can cause people, so we have to hope the studies weren't just a matter of chance. Bottom of Form ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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Response to the question

The candidate responds fairly well, with a good understanding of the studies, but a lot of what is written here does not very explicitly show any deep-set knowledge of the studies or why they were conducted (contextual research is imperative ...

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Response to the question

The candidate responds fairly well, with a good understanding of the studies, but a lot of what is written here does not very explicitly show any deep-set knowledge of the studies or why they were conducted (contextual research is imperative for these social studies; they were not conducted for the sake of subjecting humans to uncomfortable conditions). It appears the candidate is trying to refute the research due to both studies' hugely unethical conduct. Whilst the argument is fairly well-made, it would serve the candidate better not to write as if speaking, with frequent spoken discourse markers such as "Yes" and rhetoric such as "Where does that get us?". It is not an objective essay at all, and a counter-argument should be sought, understanding the need for slightly unethical research (could Milgram have studied obedience in any other way?).

Level of analysis

The Level of Analysis is not very apparent here. Where the candidate may have been directed to comment on the strengths and weakness of such highly unethical research (e.g. a strength being we're able to study complex behaviour and to disregard ethics is the only way, and a weakness being that the research can cause enormous mental harm to participants), this candidate simply 'talks' about the studies. The premise of the piece is not clear, and the candidate neither makes a good argument for or against the studies.

I recommend writing a clearer introduction, outlining the purpose behind each study and why they were conducted, so to make the purpose of the essay clearer. Also, the introduction should detail which standpoint the candidate is taking, as it becomes ambiguous otherwise.

Quality of writing

The Quality of Writing is fair, but for such a jargonised subject as Psychology, I would expect to see a much more proficient use of the appropriate terminology, such as "right to withdraw" and "lack of informed consent". The grammar for the most part is very good and the the essay is cohesive, but the candidate must work on the paragraphing skills as the block of text can become daunting even to examiners, who will deduct marks from candidates who cannot show evidence of the ability to present essays clearly.


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Reviewed by sydneyhopcroft 30/06/2012

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