Opinions and Social Pressure Response Essay

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Asch, Solomon E. “Opinions and Social Pressure.” Scientific America. 193.5 (1995): 31-35. Rpt. in Writing and Reading Across the Curriculum. Eds. Laurence Behrens and Leonard J. Rosen.12th ed. New York: Pearson Inc., 2013. 655-659. Print. McLeod, Saul. “Asch Experiment.” SimplyPsychology.org. Simply Psychology, 2008. Web. 28 August 2014. Summary: In the article, “Opinions and Social Pressure” by Solomon E. Asch, he states that social pressure from a majority group could influence a person to conform. Asch and his research team wanted to find out how and how much social forces constrain people’s opinions and attitudes. The researchers also wanted to find out whether or not, when confronted with an incorrect answer,…show more content…
These results showed that 13.6% accepted the wrong answer compared to the second experiment. This sudden drop indicates with only one person in the minority, he was more likely to conform. When there were more in the minority, participants were more likely to answer how they would and not feel pressured. In the last experiment, the member in the minority was allowed to be seated next to someone he knew personally. During this set of trials, the member in the minority ended up answering almost invariably independent. Out of all of the trials, Asch concluded that people will conform for two reasons: they want to fit in with the others and because they believe the group is better informed (on an intelligence level) than they are. Response: While there have been many psychological tests similar to this, this experiment lacks certain criteria that I believe would change the outlook of this experiment. Since this experiment was done in the 1950s, which was a time in which it was the norm to conform, this could not address to young men now based on how time has changed along with norms. Secondly, since this was done in America, this could not fully take effect in other countries because not all countries conform like we do, so the statistical evidence would vary immensely. Besides the negative, two studies have brought some more insight to this experiment that have shed light as to how time changes Asch’s results. In a conformity experiment by Richard
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