Compare and Contrast One Laboratory and One Field Experiment.

Topics: Stanford prison experiment, Experiment, Electric shock Pages: 4 (1583 words) Published: April 3, 2011
Compare and contrast one laboratory and one field experiment.

A laboratory experiment is where research is done in a highly controlled environment, where the level of control is very important. It is also to examine the validity of the hypotheses. It is an investigation where one or more variables would be changed under these controlled circumstances so that research can be done on the affects of these alterations.

A field experiment is a study conducted in a naturally-occurring environment. It is a real life setup where one or more independent variables are manipulated by the experimenter to determine the affect of behaviour. Psychologists like these experiments as they give away natural behaviour.

One laboratory experiment was done by Stanley Milgram in 1961. He was a professor at Yale University. Milgram was Jewish by birth and very interested in the 2nd world war and the holocaust. He was especially interested in why millions of Germans obeyed orders resulting in the mass slaughtering of millions of Jews during the 2nd world war. One theory he had was that Germans were different to people of a different nationality and that they were more likely to have a personality type that makes them obey orders from those of a higher authority. He believed that the Germans were the only race to be this callous.Milgram tested his theory by carrying out a study on American men to see how far they would go following orders to torture or kill someone. An experiment of obedience. 40 male subjects were recruited by mail and a newspaper ad to participate in a ‘memory and learning’ experiment which they would also be paid for. Each participant was told that there payment was for showing up and they could keep the payment no matter what happened after they arrived. On arrival the participant met the person leading the experiment and the subject who was in fact a stooge. The participant and the stooge then picked slips of paper to decide who would be the teacher and who...
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