Discuss the Research on Compliance and Conformity Underlining

Decent Essays
To comply and conform in society is sometimes ideal in some situations especially when everyone has their own ideas, beliefs, opinions and ways of thinking. So to comply and conform when group work arises is a situation many people do to avoid confrontation, possible embarrassment, and generally being `the odd one out'. Psychologists have done many experiments to tests compliance and conformity. They have tested why people do it, when people will do it, which people do it, how people do it, and what situations people are more likely to do it. I will discuss mainly what enhances and what reduces this type of behaviour through research done by Asch, Milgram, and Sherif.

Asch (1951) did an experiment to test people's conformity skills with
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(Philip Banyard and Andrew Grayson, Introducing Psychological Research, p7).

There are criticisms with this experiment though because people believe that "the research concentrates on the individual rather than the situation they are in. Also, the research invariably deals with very trivial tasks or judgments. For example, ` how long is the line?' Well who cares?" (Philip Banyard and Andrew Grayson, Introducing Psychological Research, p9). The study was also often done on students, of which are more likely to conform due to the fact that they do not want to be different than what they thought were other students in the group. It might have portrayed them as `stupid' and may even have thought if they gave the wrong answer (which was actually the correct answer but others said differently) thought the others may think they had a weakness in their intelligence if they didn't concur with them. The meaningless nature of the task, no emotional involvement and that they were all strangers to one another also affected the responses of the research participant. In fact, the results of the experiment may have shown conformity considerably higher than in a `real life' situation where people are more likely to put forward their own beliefs about
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