A Critical Analysis Of Stanley Milgram's Experiment

Decent Essays
Analysis of Milgram’s Experiment
How far will people go to be obedient? While some people are defiant, most people will go beyond imaginable measures to obey authority. Stanley Milgram conducted an experiment that tested human relations and authority. The experiment was scientifically sound and followed procedures but was very flawed. Milgram’s experiment consisted of an experimenter, a naïve subject, and an actor. The naïve subject is a volunteer who saw a public announcement stating that they would get paid four dollars (plus fifty cent carfare) for an hour of their time. Upon arriving the willing participants were told about the experiment’s process which included shocking a person when they gave wrong answers to a set of memory
…show more content…
He had the experimenter come in dressed in a lab coat and explained that they were to ask a series of word associations to the learner and administer shocks for incorrect answers. As the number of incorrect answers increased so did the intensity of the shocks given. Voltage of the shocks ranged from 15/ slight shock to 300/danger to 450/xxx. The shocks were a form of punishment. The naïve subject was unaware that the shocks dispensed were simulated. The purpose of Milgram’s experiment was to see how far people would go to obey authority. His scientific methods followed the scientific procedure and produced external validity. There were 20 variations of Stanley Milgram’s experiment some factors remained consistent throughout all variations, while some remained the same, while some changed. The four experimental conditions grew in intensity. In the first condition, also known as remote feedback, the learner was isolated from the subject and could not be seen or heard except at three hundred volts when he pounded on the wall. At three hundred and fifteen volts he was no longer heard from until the end of the experiment. The naive subject was required to keep administering shocks with an unresponsive human at the other end. Put yourself in the teacher’s shoes. In the second condition (voice feedback) the learner was placed in an adjacent room, when he started to shout and protest at lower shock levels he could be heard through the crack in the door. In the third
Get Access