Explanations for obedience - situational variables. Flashcards Preview

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1

How can proximity influence obedience?

- proximity to the consequences of your actions can influence whether you obey an order from an authority figure.

- proximity to the authority figure will also influence obedience.

2

Milligram's evidence to show that proximity influences obedience -

1. teacher and learner were sat just 46cm apart. The obedience rate decreased from 65% in the original experiment to just 40%. This shows that when people are in close proximity to the consequences of their actions, they are less likely to obey destructive orders.

2. The teacher had to force the learner's hand onto a shock plate every time the learner answered incorrectly. The obedience rate decreased from 65% in the original experiment to just 30%. This shows that when people are in close proximity to the consequences of their actions, they are less likely to best destructive orders.

3

How can location influence obedience?

In locations that add to the legitimacy of an authority figure, obedience rates will be higher.

In locations that decrease the legitimacy of an authority figure, obedience rates will be lower.

4

How does Milgram's research support location influencing obedience?

In a replication of his study, the experiment was moved from Yale University to a less prestigious setting. A legitimate and well respected researcher would be expected to have a nice office a nice part of the city. Obedience rates dropped from 65% (in the original study) to just 47.5%.

5

How does uniform influence obedience?

Authority figures are often perceived to have more legitimate authority when wearing a uniform.
We are taught from a young age to respect those in a uniform.

6

research support for uniforms influencing obedience rates -

- Milgram carried out a variation where the experimenter (wearing a lab coat) had to leave following a phone call at the start of the experiment. The role of experimenter was then taken over by someone in ordinary clothing. The obedience rate dropped from 65% in the original experiment to just 20%