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AQA A-Level Psychology Paper 1 > Asch's Line Variation Study > Flashcards

Flashcards in Asch's Line Variation Study Deck (17)
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When did Asch's Line Variation Study take place?



What was the aim of Asch's study?

He wanted to examine the extent to which social pressure from a majority (NSI), could influence a person to conform.


What was Asch's sample.

50 male students from Swathmore college.

(Individualistic sample means low population validity - findings cannot be generalised).


Evaluate Asch's sample.

Low population validity - Participants were all male and from the same geographical location.

This is an individualistic sample and the findings cannot be generalised.



Name the Dependant Variable.

The response from the participant/levels of conformity.


Name the Independant Variable.

The social situation, i.e the presence of the group/presence of confederates.


What percentage of critical trials did participants conform to the incorrect answer?

On average, participants conformed to the incorrect answer on 37% of critical trials.


True or False? 67% of participants conformed on at least one critical trial?

False. 74% of participants conformed on at least one critical trial.


What percentage of participants are considered 'Non-Conforming'?

26% of participants didn't conform in any test.


What can be concluded about conformity as a result of Asch's line variation study? (eg, Group size, unanimity, task difficulty).

Permissable answers:
- Group Size- The smaller the group, the lower the levels of conformity. (Conformity levelled out after 3 confederates. If there were 3 or more, conformity stayed at approx. 37%) - At 15 confederates - conformity dropped as pps became sceptical.
- Unanimity- if someone has the same opinion as you, you are less likely to conform - with an ally, conformity dropped to 5%.
-Task Difficulty- The greater the ambiguity of the task, the greater the chance of conformity.


Give supporting evidence on the conclusion about unanimity.

When one of the confederates was instructed to give the correct answer, conformity dropped to 5%.


Is Asch's Line Study an example of a Lab experiment or a natural experiment?

Lab experiment.


Give an advantage and disadvantage of Lab experiments.

Advantages: Reliable, repeatable, accuate, clear quantitative data, time-saving, strict control over extraneous variables (not independant varables, but could still affect the results).

Disadvantages: unlike longitudinal/field experiments, lab experiments have low ecological validity/low population validity.
Tasks have low mundane realism.


Give an example of an ethical guideline which was broken by Asch upon conducting his Line Variation study.

Permissable answers:
-Deception: Told ppts they were taking part in a vision test.
-Protection from harm: paricipants claimed they felt stressed.


Describe Jenness' procedure.

- Asked pps to discuss, in a group of 3, how many beans were in the jar and give an estimate.
- He then asked them to think individually.


What did Jenness find?

- Nearly all pps changed their original answer.
- On average male pps changed their answer by 256
- On average females changed their answer by 382


What did Jenness conclude?

Pps conformed due to informational social influence as they believed the group estimate was more likely to be correct.