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Chapter 16

Chapter 16 part 2 PS102.docx

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Wilfrid Laurier University
Carolyn Ensley

PS102 Chapter 16 – Social Behaviour Week 11 Conformity and Obedience: Yielding to Others -Social roles are widely shared expectations about how people in certain positions are supposed to behave Conformity -Conformity occurs when people yield to real or imagined social pressure -Ex. If you maintain a well-groomed lawn only to avoid complaints from your neighbours -Group size and group unanimity are key determinants of conformity -Normative influence operates when people conform to social norms for fear of negative social consequences – people often conform or comply because they are afraid of being criticized or rejected -Informational influence operates when people look to others for guidance about how to behave in ambiguous situations – if you’re at a nice restaurant and don’t know which fork to use, you may watch others to see what they’re doing Obedience -Obedience is a form of compliance that occurs when people follow direct commands, usually from someone in a position of authority -Ex. When an authority figure says “Jump!” many people simply ask, “How high?” -For most people, willingness to obey someone in authority is the rule not the exception Cultural Variations in Conformity and Obedience -The phenomena of conformity and obedience seem to transcend culture -Studies have found higher levels of conformity in collectivistic cultures than in individualistic cultures Behaviour in Groups: Joining with Others -A group consists of two or more individuals who interact and are interdependent Behaviour Alone and in Groups: The Case of the Bystander Effect -The bystander effect: people are less likely to provide help when they are in groups than when they are alone -Your probability of getting help declines as group size increases -The bystander effect is less likely to occur when someone is in obvious physical danger
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