Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  1. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority Milgram (1965) followed up the famous study on obedience to authority (Milgram, 1963). He examined the influence of the following factors on observed compliance of the „teachers“: • Closeness to the victim • Closeness to the experimenter • Reputation of the institution Finally, he asked 40 psychiatrist from a leading Medical School to predict obedience. Contributor © POSbase 2005

  2. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority Closeness to the victim: • If the teacher did not hear anything else than the victim pounding to the wall at 300V, 65% went to the maximum of 450V. • If the teacher heard the voice of the victim , 62% went to the maximum. • If the teacher saw the suffering victim, 40% went to the maximum. • If the teacher had to put the victim hand on a shock plate, 30% went to the maximum. © POSbase 2005

  3. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority The closer the teacher was to the apparent victim, the smaller was the probability that they went up to the maximal shock intensity. It is nevertheless surprising that 62% of the participants went to the maximal shock intensity eventhough the learner made clear that he was in pain: © POSbase 2005

  4. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority • A light grunt at 75, 90, and 105 Volts; • 120 Volts: the victim shouts that the shocks are becoming painful; • 150Volts: shouts „Experimenter, get me out of here!“ • 180 Volts: the victim cries „I can‘t stand the pain!“; • From then on: cries increase in intensity; • 270 Volts: an agonized scream. Throughout, the learner insists that he will no longer participate in the experiment. • After 300 Volts, the learner does no longer respond to the learning task, but shrieks in agony whenever a shock is administered. © POSbase 2005

  5. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority The presence of the experimenter: Three times more participants (26 versus 9) complied with the requests of the experimenter when he was in the lab than when he went away and gave orders through the phone. The farther the distance to the experimenter, the smaller was the probability of obedience. © POSbase 2005

  6. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority Some participants solved the conflict in that they told the experimenter that they gave the requested shock, but in fact pressed the lever for the lowest shock intensity – 15V – so that the experimenter could hear the „click“. © POSbase 2005

  7. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority The reputation of the institution: The studies were done at the renowned Yale University; maybe participants that this is a guarantee that all is fine. If the experiment was done in a run-down commercial building – without any visible tie to the university. Participants had the same age and occupational background as those in Yale. In this study, still 48% went to the maximum, compared to 65% in the same condition of the Yale study. Reputation of the institution which conducted the study had only a slight effect on obedience to authority. © POSbase 2005

  8. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority Moreover, Milgram conducted a study where there was a group of three „teachers“; two of them were confederates to the experimenter. If these associates declined to continue, 90% of the participants defied the experimenter. When others are present who resist the requests of the experimenter, the probability of compliance to experimenter requests drops dramatically. © POSbase 2005

  9. Factors that Influence Obedience to Authority Finally, Milgram asked 40 psychiatrist from a leading medical school how far „normal“ people would go. • The psychiatrists meant that: • Most people would reject to go beyond 150 Volts • Less than 4% would go beyond 300 Volts • Only 0.125% would go up to the end of the scale, 450 Volts This fits well the findings in Milgram (1974) © POSbase 2005