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1 PSY 321 Conformity and Compliance Dr. Sanchez. 2 Today’s Outline Compliance Compliance –Techniques and Experiments Conformity Conformity –Techniques.

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Presentation on theme: "1 PSY 321 Conformity and Compliance Dr. Sanchez. 2 Today’s Outline Compliance Compliance –Techniques and Experiments Conformity Conformity –Techniques."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 PSY 321 Conformity and Compliance Dr. Sanchez

2 2 Today’s Outline Compliance Compliance –Techniques and Experiments Conformity Conformity –Techniques and Experiments Majority vs. Minority Influence Majority vs. Minority Influence

3 3 Compliance Changes in behavior that are elicited by direct requests. Changes in behavior that are elicited by direct requests.

4 4 The Language of Requests Talking fast and catching people off guard can improve compliance rates. Talking fast and catching people off guard can improve compliance rates. People can be disarmed by the simple phrasing of the request. People can be disarmed by the simple phrasing of the request.

5 5 The language of requests: Experiment Langer et al., 1978 IV: Request did or did not include a reason IV: Request did or did not include a reason o“I have five copies. May I use the Xerox machine?” o“I have five copies. May I use the Xerox machine, because I’m in a rush?” o“I have five copies. May I use the Xerox machine, because I have to make copies?”

6 6 Langer et al. (1978)

7 7 Breaking the Mindless Routine (Santos et al. 1994)

8 8 Norm of Reciprocity The powerful norm of reciprocity dictates that we treat others as they have treated us. The powerful norm of reciprocity dictates that we treat others as they have treated us.  Example: writing “thank you” on back of check increases tip  Coca-Cola study Norm of reciprocity is relatively short- lived. Norm of reciprocity is relatively short- lived.

9 9 Sequential Request Strategies: Foot-in-the-Door Technique Person begins with a very small request; secures agreement; then makes a separate larger request. Person begins with a very small request; secures agreement; then makes a separate larger request. Why is it effective? Why is it effective?

10 10 Foot-in-the-Door: Experiment Freedman & Fraser, 1966 IV: Small request first, or not IV: Small request first, or not Initial request (small): Initial request (small): –By phone, asked women to complete short survey on household products Intrusive request (big): Intrusive request (big): –3 days later, asked women to allow a few men into the house for 2 hours to rummage through drawers

11 11 Freedman & Fraser (1966)

12 12 Sequential Request Strategies: Low-Balling Person secures agreement with a request and then increases the size of that request by revealing hidden costs. Person secures agreement with a request and then increases the size of that request by revealing hidden costs. Why is it effective? Why is it effective?

13 13 Low-balling: Experiment Cialdini et al., 1978 Asked intro psych students to participate in experiment Asked intro psych students to participate in experiment IV: low-balling or upfront IV: low-balling or upfront –half were told in advance that it would start at 7am; –half were told after agreeing that it would start at 7am

14 14 Cialdini et al. (1978)

15 15 Sequential Request Strategies: Door-in-the-Face Technique Person begins with a very large request that will be rejected; then follows that up with a more moderate request. Person begins with a very large request that will be rejected; then follows that up with a more moderate request. Why is it effective? Why is it effective?

16 16 Door-in-the-Face Technique: Experiment Cialdini et al., 1975 IV: Large request first? IV: Large request first? Asked students to volunteer for 2 hrs/week for 2 yrs to work with juvenile delinquentsAsked students to volunteer for 2 hrs/week for 2 yrs to work with juvenile delinquents Or no large request firstOr no large request first Followed by smaller request: Will you escort juvenile delinquents to zoo? Followed by smaller request: Will you escort juvenile delinquents to zoo?

17 17 Cialdini et al. (1975)

18 18 Sequential Request Strategies: That’s Not All, Folks! Person begins with a somewhat inflated request; then immediately decreases the apparent size of the request by offering a discount or bonus. Person begins with a somewhat inflated request; then immediately decreases the apparent size of the request by offering a discount or bonus. Why? Why?

19 19 That’s-Not-All Technique: Experiment Burger, 1986 IV: Did the deal get “sweeter”? IV: Did the deal get “sweeter”? –½ of Ps told cupcakes cost 75 cents –½ of Ps first told cupcakes cost $1, then told the price would be reduced to 75 cents

20 20 Burger (1986)

21 21 Sequential Request Strategies

22 22 Assertiveness: When People Say No To be able to resist the trap of compliance techniques….. To be able to resist the trap of compliance techniques…..

23 23 Conformity Tendency to change perceptions, opinions, or behavior in ways that are consistent with group norms. Tendency to change perceptions, opinions, or behavior in ways that are consistent with group norms.

24 24 The Chameleon Effect

25 25 Conformity: Autokinetic Phenomenon Sherif (1935, 1937) Sherif (1935, 1937) Study of “norm formation” Study of “norm formation” Dark room, pinpoint of light appears 15 feet in front of you Dark room, pinpoint of light appears 15 feet in front of you Asked, “How far did light move?” Asked, “How far did light move?” First time, you’re alone First time, you’re alone Subsequent times, you’re with others (this is the IV) Subsequent times, you’re with others (this is the IV)

26 26 A Classic Case of Suggestibility

27 27 Conformity: Asch Line-Matching P surrounded by 6 confederates P surrounded by 6 confederates Asked to judge length of a line Asked to judge length of a line IV: Confederates give correct or incorrect answer IV: Confederates give correct or incorrect answer

28 28 Line Judgment Task Used in Asch’s Conformity Studies Asch, 1955.

29 29 What Did Asch’s Participants Do? Participants went along 37% of the time. Participants went along 37% of the time. 25% of the participants NEVER conformed 25% of the participants NEVER conformed Of the conformists, 50% conformed for at least half of the critical presentations. Of the conformists, 50% conformed for at least half of the critical presentations.

30 30 Sherif’s vs. Asch’s Studies Sherif: Because of ambiguity, participants turned to each other for guidance. Sherif: Because of ambiguity, participants turned to each other for guidance. Asch: Found self in awkward position. Asch: Found self in awkward position.

31 31 Why Do People Conform? Informational Influence: People conform because they believe others are correct in their judgments Informational Influence: People conform because they believe others are correct in their judgments –Sherif autokinetic effect –2 heads better than one? –Implications for eyewitness testimonies

32 32 Why Do People Conform? Normative Influence: People conform because they fear the consequences of appearing deviant. Normative Influence: People conform because they fear the consequences of appearing deviant. –Asch line-matching –Effects of Ostracism Cyberball Cyberball “Minority Slowness Effect” “Minority Slowness Effect”

33 33 Types of Conformity Private Conformity: Changes in both overt behavior and beliefs. Private Conformity: Changes in both overt behavior and beliefs. –Sherif autokinetic effect –Enduring conformity Public Conformity: Superficial change in overt behavior only. Public Conformity: Superficial change in overt behavior only. –Asch line-matching –If wrote answers privately, effect went away

34 34 Distinguishing Types of Conformity From Robert Baron et al., (1996) Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 71, Copyright (c) 1996 by the American Psychological Association. Adapted with permission.

35 35 Model of the Types of Conformity

36 36 Majority Influence: Group Size Conformity increases with group size -- but only up to a point. Conformity increases with group size -- but only up to a point. Why? Why? –Law of “diminishing returns”? –Perception that others are either in “collusion” or “spineless sheep”?

37 37 Majority Influence: Having an Ally in Dissent When there was an ally in Asch’s study, conformity dropped by almost 80%. When there was an ally in Asch’s study, conformity dropped by almost 80%. Why does having an ally reduce majority influence on our behavior? Why does having an ally reduce majority influence on our behavior?

38 38 Majority Influence and Gender Differences IV: Masculine, Feminine, or Stereotype Neutral Q’s IV: Masculine, Feminine, or Stereotype Neutral Q’s DV: Percent agreeing w/majority response DV: Percent agreeing w/majority response Results? Results? –Men conformed more to feminine qs –Women conformed more to masculine qs –No difference on neutral items

39 39 Majority Influence and Gender Differences Conceptual IV: Social Pressure Conceptual IV: Social Pressure IV: Public v. Private IV: Public v. Private DV: Percent agreeing w/majority response DV: Percent agreeing w/majority response Results? Results? –Men conformed less –Women conformed more Why? Why?

40 40 Majority Influence and Gender Differences Sex differences appear to depend on: Sex differences appear to depend on: –How comfortable people are with the experimental task. –Type of social pressure people face.

41 41 Majority Influence and Culture Cultures differ in the extent to which people adhere to social norms. Cultures differ in the extent to which people adhere to social norms. What determines whether a culture becomes individualistic or collectivistic? What determines whether a culture becomes individualistic or collectivistic?

42 42 Individualistic / Collectivistic US US Australia Australia Great Britain Great Britain Canada Canada Netherlands Netherlands Asia Asia Africa Africa South America South America

43 43 Non-Conformists Asch’s study = 63% did not conform!!! Asch’s study = 63% did not conform!!!

44 44 Minority Influence Def. Process by which dissenters produce change Def. Process by which dissenters produce change Moscovici: Nonconformists derive power from the style of their behavior. Moscovici: Nonconformists derive power from the style of their behavior. –“Consistent dissent” approach –“The color study” Why? Why?

45 45 Minority Influence Hollander: Minorities influence by first accumulating idiosyncrasy credits. Hollander: Minorities influence by first accumulating idiosyncrasy credits. –“First conform, then dissent” strategy. Why? Why?

46 46 Obedience Behavior change produced by the commands of authority Behavior change produced by the commands of authority Remember: Remember: –Compliance is a behavior change elicited by a direct request –Conformity is a change of perceptions, opinions, or behaviors in ways that are consistent with group norms

47 47 Milgram’s Research: Forces of Destructive Obedience Conducted his experiments during the time that Adolph Eichmann was being tried for Nazi war crimes. Conducted his experiments during the time that Adolph Eichmann was being tried for Nazi war crimes. Symbols of authority Symbols of authority His unorthodox methods have been the subject of much ethical debate. His unorthodox methods have been the subject of much ethical debate.

48 48 The Prods Used in Milgram’s Experiment “Please continue (or please go on).” “Please continue (or please go on).” “The experiment requires that you continue.” “The experiment requires that you continue.” “It is absolutely essential that you continue.” “It is absolutely essential that you continue.” “You have no other choice; you must go on.” “You have no other choice; you must go on.”

49 49 Milgram’s Baseline Results

50 50 The Obedient Participant No gender differences observed in level of obedience. No gender differences observed in level of obedience. Milgram’s basic findings have been replicated in several different countries and among different age groups. Milgram’s basic findings have been replicated in several different countries and among different age groups. Milgram’s participants were tormented by experience. Milgram’s participants were tormented by experience.

51 51 Are We All Nazis? No, an individual’s character can make a difference. No, an individual’s character can make a difference. Authoritarian Personality: Submissive toward figures of authority but aggressive toward subordinates. Authoritarian Personality: Submissive toward figures of authority but aggressive toward subordinates.


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