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Social Psychology. Lesson 4. Why People conform. Normative social Influence Conformity to the majority even when you don’t hold their point view is called COMPIANCE. thoughts , feelings, attitudes, or behaviour, social influence is the driving force behind compliance

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why people conform
Why People conform

Normative social Influence

  • Conformity to the majority even when you don’t hold their point view is called COMPIANCE.

thoughts, feelings, attitudes, or behaviour, social influence is the driving force behind compliance

  • Therefore, going against majority isn’t easy as a social species humans need to fit in to counter feelings of rejection or fear.
  • This is the basis for normative influence.
slide3

Evaluation

  • This explanation works but can be variable to different circumstances.
  • Graandeau + Cillessen 2006
  • They looked at how groups with members who had low interpersonal skills, could be manipulated by a Bully and then provided with a common goal of picking someone. Acting against group pressure to fit in.
informational social influence
Informational Social Influence

The idea here is that the conformity is beyond the level of social compliance, we can become “brainwashed” or from free will choose to change our private and public views.

This is an example of INTERNALISATION.

This can be linked to influence of the minority and majority.

Informational social influence is more likely to happen when…

  • The situation is ambiguous (uncertain)
  • The situation is in crisis (emergency action)
  • We believe others to be experts ( trusting to their knowledge)
  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkKviMfi24s
slide5

Evaluation

Wittenbrink + Henly (1996)

  • Pp where exposed to beliefs that negative comparisons about African Americans, they were told this was the majority belief and results showed that they showed more negative beliefs about Black individuals.
slide6

Fein (2007) [Showed faces of the audience]

  • Supported the role of informational social influence in political opinions in the U.S elections.
  • Results showed that looking at the ‘reactions of fellow participants’ caused a large shift in judgements over candidates. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HfHbw3n0EIM
evolution of both approaches social impact theory
Evolution of both approaches Social Impact Theory

Latane 1981

  • Explaining why people conform in the same situations but not others.
  • Number – The more ppl their/ more influence on one individual. (more questions/more confussion)
  • Strength – The more important the individual to you the more influence they will have Perrin + Spencer “probation officers”
  • Immediacy – Each individual can influence others, the more ppl present the less impact ONE individual will have.
support for s i p
Support for S.I.P

Sedikides and Jackson (1990)

High strength sources had more impact (resulting in more conformity) than low strength slow sources.

This theory is called Dynamic Social Impact Theory.

1) Consolidation – Over time majority goes up and minority goes down so it gets harder to go against the consensus result. And go against the majority.

2) Clustering – We are more influenced by our closet neighbours so clusters of opinions with similar opinions can form groups. “Mean Girls” Social Politics.

3) Correlation – Opinions on other issues join over time so they agree or understand on some level.

4) Continuing Diversity – Because of clustering minority can be shielding from influence attempts of majority minority view can continue.

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