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PSYCH301: Social Psychology

Unit 4: Social Influence   As social beings, we are often strongly affected by the presence of those around us. One main focus of social psychological research has centered on social influence. Social influence refers to a situation in which a person or group changes or influences the attitudes or behaviors of others in a particular direction. There are many different aspects of social influence that one can experience at any given time. However, in this unit, we will focus on four types of influences that humans experience when in social situations: conformity, compliance, obedience, and the bystander effect.

Unit 4 Time Advisory
Completing this unit should take you approximately 17.5 hours.
 
☐    Subunit 4.1: 1 hour
☐    Subunit 4.2: 7.25 hours
☐    Subunit 4.2.1: 1 hour 
☐    Subunit 4.2.2: 2.25 hours 
☐    Subunit 4.2.3: 4 hours 
☐    Subunit 4.3: 3 hours
☐    Subunit 4.4: 4.5 hours
☐    Subunit 4.5: 1.75 hours

Unit4 Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
- discuss the main research findings in the area of social persuasion; - outline the basic methodology, results, and impact of seminal research studies in the area of social influence in social psychology; - compare and contrast the concepts of obedience, compliance, and conformity; and - define pluralistic ignorance and explain how this concept applies to real life settings.

4.1 An Introduction to Social Influence   - Reading: Creighton University: Professor Robert B. Cialdini’s “The Science of Persuasion” Link: Creighton University: Professor Robert B. Cialdini’s “The Science of Persuasion” (HTML)
 
Also available in:
Microsoft Word
 
Instructions: Read this empirical journal article as advised by the readings presented earlier in subunit 1.2. This article will introduce you to the six basic tendencies in human behavior, which help make social influence possible. Robert B. Cialdini is Regents’ Professor of Psychology at Arizona State University.
 
Reading this article should take you approximately 1 hour.

 Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use
displayed on the webpage above.

4.2 Conformity   4.2.1 An Introduction to Conformity   - Reading: IntroPsych: Dr. Russ Dewey’s Psychology: An Introduction: “Sherif (1936): Group Norms and Conformity” (HTML) and “Asch (1951): Conformity” Link: IntroPsych: Dr. Russ Dewey’s Psychology: An Introduction“Sherif (1936): Group Norms and Conformity” (HTML) and “Asch (1951): Conformity” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Read these articles.  The webpages from Dr. Dewey’s text will provide you with (a) an overview of the research and findings related to conformity, and (b) two seminal experiments (Asch’s conformity experiments and Sherif’s autokinetic experiment) regarding conformity to help introduce you to the topic.
 
Reading these articles should take you approximately 1 hour. 
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Web Media: Massachusetts Institute of Technology OpenCourseWare: Professor John Gabrieli’s Introduction to Psychology: “Lecture 22: Social Psychology I” Link: Massachusetts Institute of Technology OpenCourseWare: Professor John Gabrieli’s Introduction to Psychology“Lecture 22: Social Psychology I” (JW Player)
     
    Instructions: Scroll down the page and click on the link for the lecture segment on Social Influence: Conformity, Compliance, and Obedience. This lecture segment provides an overview of conformity, or going along with the crowd, and of compliance, which involves giving in to someone’s request. Note that this material covers topics outlined in subunits 4.2.1 and 4.3.
     
    Watching this lecture should take you approximately 15 minutes.
     
     Terms of Use: This video is release under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 license.

4.2.2 Normative and Informational Influences   - Reading: Principles of Social Psychology: “Chapter 7, Section 1: The Many Varieties of Conformity” Link: Principles of Social Psychology: “Chapter 7, Section 1: The Many Varieties of Conformity” (PDF)
 
Instructions: Read Section 7.1, pages 329-351, paying particular attention to the distinction between normative and informational influence and conformity.
 
Reading this section should take you approximately 1 hour.

 Terms of Use: This text was adapted by The Saylor Foundation under
a [Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0
License](http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/) without
attribution as requested by the work’s original creator or licensee.
  • Reading: YouTube: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 7: Conformity“ Link: YouTube: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 7: Conformity“ (YouTube)
     
    Also available in:
    iTunes U
     
    Instructions: Start the video at 13 minutes as the first part of the lecture deals with administrative details of the class. There is also a class break from the 50-minute mark through the 57-minute mark; you may want to fast-forward through this section.
     
    Watching this lecture and pausing to take notes should take you approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes.
     
    Terms of Use: This video is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative 3.0 License.  It is attributed to Robb Willer and the University of California, Berkley, and the original version can be found here.

4.2.3 Pluralistic Ignorance   - Lecture: YouTube: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 9: Conformity and Norms II” Link: YouTube: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 9: Conformity and Norms II” (YouTube)
 
Also available in:
iTunes U
 
Instructions: Start the video at the 7-minute mark as the first part of the lecture deals with administrative details of the class.
 
Watching this lecture and pausing to take notes should take you approximately 1 hour.

 Terms of Use: This video is licensed under a [Creative Commons
Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative 3.0
License](http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/).  It is
attributed to Robb Willer and the University of California, Berkley,
and the original version can be found
[here](http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL1317EA5E1CA2DA9A).
  • Reading: Princeton University: Professor Deborah A. Prentice and Dale T. Miller’s “Pluralistic Ignorance and Alcohol Use on Campus: Some Consequences of Misperceiving the Social Norm” Link: Princeton University: Professor Deborah A. Prentice and Dale T. Miller’s “Pluralistic Ignorance and Alcohol Use on Campus: Some Consequences of Misperceiving the Social Norm” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Read this empirical journal article as advised by the readings presented earlier in 1.2. This reading will highlight conformity as it applies to a relevant topic on college campuses. 
     
    Reading this article should take you approximately 3 hours.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

4.3 Compliance   - Reading: Principles of Social Psychology: “Chapter 5, Section 3: Changing Attitudes by Changing Behavior” Link: Principles of Social Psychology: ** “Chapter 5, Section 3: Changing Attitudes by Changing Behavior” (HTML)
 
Instructions: Note this chapter will cover the topics outlined in subunits 4.3.1-4.3.3. For this reading, scroll down the web page until you reach the text box labeled “Social Psychology in the Public Interest: How Salespeople Use Principles of Persuasion” on pags 264-266. This first reading will serve as a brief overview of how research and findings regarding compliance techniques are often used in marketing and persuasion. This provides a good example of how social psychological principles can be applied to real life settings.
 
Reading this chapter should take you approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.

 Terms of Use: This text was adapted by The Saylor Foundation under
a [Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0
License](http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/) without
attribution as requested by the work’s original creator or licensee.
  • Reading: University of Iowa: Amy Kaplan and Dr. Joachim Krueger’s “Compliance after Threat: Self-Affirmation or Self-Presentation?” Link: University of Iowa: Amy Kaplan and Dr. Joachim Krueger’s “Compliance after Threat: Self-Affirmation or Self-Presentation?” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Note this article will cover the topics outlined in subunits 4.3.1-4.3.3. For this second reading, read this empirical journal article as advised by the readings presented earlier in subunit 1.2 of this course. This reading will provide a specific example of empirical research in this area. 
     
    Reading this article should take you approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

4.3.1 Motivations for Compliance   Note: This topic is covered by the readings assigned below subunit 4.3.

4.3.2 Three Compliance Strategies   Note: This topic is covered by the readings assigned below subunit 4.3.

4.3.3 Self-Affirmation versus Self-Presentations   Note: This topic is covered by the readings assigned below subunit 4.3.

4.4 Obedience and the Power of the Situation   - Reading: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Gregorio Billikopf Encina’s “Milgram’s Experiment on Obedience to Authority” Link: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Gregorio Billikopf Encina’s “Milgram’s Experiment on Obedience to Authority” (HTML) 
 
Instructions: Note this article will cover subunits 4.4.1 and 4.4.2. Milgram’s experiment and Zimbardo’s experiment represent two of the most famous and, arguably, infamous experiments conducted in social psychology. These experiments were not only important to the topic of obedience but also important in impacting the creation and enforcement of ethical guidelines in scientific research. The overall themes to this research are that (a) situational factors have a powerful effect on behavior, and (b) ethical consideration in research is necessary and important.
 
Reading this article should take you approximately 45 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Reading: IntroPsych: Dr. Russ Dewey’s Psychology: An Introduction: “Was Milgram’s Research Ethical?” and “Zimbardo’s Prison Study” Link: IntroPsych: Dr. Russ Dewey’s Psychology: An Introduction: “Was Milgram’s Research Ethical?” (HTML) and “Zimbardo’s Prison Study” (HTML)
     
    Instructions: Note these articles will cover subunits 4.4.1 and 4.4.2. Milgram’s experiment and Zimbardo’s experiment represent two of the most famous and, arguably, infamous experiments conducted in social psychology. These experiments were not only important to the topic of obedience but also important in impacting the creation and enforcement of ethical guidelines in scientific research. The overall themes to this research are that (a) situational factors have a powerful effect on behavior, and (b) ethical consideration in research is necessary and important.
     
    Reading these articles should take you approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Lecture: YouTube: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 12: Obedience I” and “Lecture 13: Obedience II” Link: YouTube: University of California, Berkeley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 12: Obedience I” and “Lecture 13: Obedience II” (YouTube)
     
    Also available in:
    iTunes U (Lecture 12)
    iTunes U (Lecture 13)
     
    Instructions: Note that these lectures will cover subunits 4.4.1 and 4.4.2. Scroll down, and click on the clapperboard icon for the Obedience Ilecture. For this first lecture, start the video at 4 minutes and 45 seconds as the first part of the lecture deals with administrative details of the class. There is also a class break from the 62-minute mark until the 67-minute mark, if you would like to fast-forward through this section. For the second lecture, click on the link above, scroll down, and click on the clapperboard icon for the Obedience IIwebcast. Start the video at 11 minutes as the first part of the lecture deals with administrative details of the class. There is also a class break/extra material from the 54-minute mark until 65-minute mark. If you would like, you may skip over this section. 
     
    Note on the Lecture: These lectures are from Professor Robb Willer’s “Social Psychology: Self and Society” course at the University of California, Berkeley. 
     
    Watching the lectures and pausing to take notes should take you approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes. 

    Terms of Use: This video is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative 3.0 License.  It is attributed to Robb Willer and the University of California, Berkley, and the original version can be found here.

4.4.1 The Milgram Experiments   Note: This topic is covered by the resources assigned below subunit 4.4.

4.4.2 Zimbardo’s Stanford Prison Experiment   Note: This topic is covered by the resources assigned below subunit 4.4.

4.5 Bystander Effect   - Lecture: Massachusetts Institute of Technology OpenCourseWare: Professor John Gabrieli’s Introduction to Psychology: “Lecture 22: Social Psychology I” Link: Massachusetts Institute of Technology OpenCourseWare: Professor John Gabrieli’s Introduction to Psychology“Lecture 22: Social Psychology I” (JW Player)
 
Instructions: Scroll down the page, and click on the link for the lecture segment on Bystanders and Helping: The Bystander Effect.This lecture segment provides an overview of conformity, or going along with the crowd, and of compliance, which involves giving in to someone’s request. Note that this material covers topics outlined in subunits 4.5.1 and 4.5.2.
 
Watching this lecture should take you approximately 30 minutes.
 
Terms of Use: This video is release under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 license.

  • Reading: IntroPsych: Dr. Russ Dewey’s Psychology: An Introduction: “Bystander Apathy” and “Diffusion of Responsibility” Link: IntroPsych: Dr. Russ Dewey’s Psychology: An Introduction: “Bystander Apathy” and “Diffusion of Responsibility” (HTML)
     
    Instructions:  Read these articles. This material further explains the bystander effect and why sometimes people do not help others even when they realize there is a need. Moreover, it explains why sometimes the more witnesses there are during an emergency, the less likely it is that any one person will lend assistance due to a phenomenon called diffusion of responsibility. Note that this material covers topics outlined in subunits 4.5.1 and 4.5.2.
     
    Reading these articles should take you approximately 1 hour.
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • Lecture: YouTube: University of California, Berkley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 10: Conformity and Norms and Review for First Exam” Link: YouTube: University of California, Berkley: Professor Robb Willer’s “Lecture 10: Conformity and Norms and Review for First Exam” (YouTube)
     
    Also available in:
    iTunes U
     
    Instructions: Note this lecture is optional and covers materials in subunits 4.5.1 and 4.5.2. You are only required to listen between the 5-minute mark and the 37-minute mark as the later portion of the lecture is a review for the University of California, Berkley course exam.
     
    Watching this lecture and pausing to take notes should take you approximately 45 minutes.

    Terms of Use: This video is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative 3.0 License.  It is attributed to Robb Willer and the University of California, Berkley, and the original version can be found here.

4.5.1 The Case of Kitty Genovese   Note: This topic is covered by the resources assigned below subunit 4.5.

4.5.2 Seminal Studies in the Bystander Effect   Note: This topic is covered by the resources assigned below subunit 4.5.

Unit 4 Assessment   - Assessment: The Saylor Foundation’s “Unit 4 Assessment” Link: The Saylor Foundation’s “Unit 4 Assessment”

 Instructions: Complete this assessment to check your understanding
of the material covered in this unit. You will see the correct
answers after you hit the “Submit” button.</span>