Milgram Study

Topics: Milgram experiment, Stanley Milgram, Stanford prison experiment Pages: 3 (1036 words) Published: April 16, 2013
1. What does Milgram’s study tell us about human behaviour?

Yale University psychologist Stanley Milgram conducted the Milgram experiment, study to see the participants' willingness to obey an authority figure who instructed them to perform acts that differed with their conscience. The study is used to show the aim that Stanley Milgram himself placed to see the willingness of the participant to obey use pain if one of the participants got an answer wrong. Overall, 65% of the participants gave shocks up to 450 volts (obeyed) and 35% stopped sometime before 450 volts. During the study many participants showed signs of nervousness and tension. Participants sweated, trembled, stuttered, bit their lips, groaned, dug fingernails into their flesh, and these were typical not exceptional responses. What Milgram wanted to know was how far humans will go when an authority figure orders them to hurt another human being. Many wondered after the horrors of WWII, and not for the first time, how people could be motivated to commit acts of such brutality towards each other. Not just those in the armed forces, but ordinary people were coerced into carrying out the most cruel and gruesome acts. Milgram's study discovered people are much more obedient than you might imagine. 63% of the participants continued right until the end - they administered all the shocks even with the learner screaming in agony, begging to stop and eventually falling silent. 2. Milgram created a fake ‘shock generator’ which in the 1960s looked very realistic.  The fake shock generator had 30 switches marked clearly in 15 volt increments from 15 to 450 volts.  To improve the authenticity of the fake shock generator written labels were also clearly indicated for groups of four switches: ‘slight shock’, ‘moderate shock’, ‘strong shock’, ‘very strong shock’, ‘intense shock’, ‘extreme intensity shock’, ‘danger: severe shock’.  Two switches after this were marked XXX). The fake generator also had buzzers,...
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