Talk:Asch conformity experiments

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Former good article nominee Asch conformity experiments was a Social sciences and society good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
January 4, 2013 Good article nominee Not listed
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Unclear context[edit]

The unanimity of the confederates has also been varied. When the confederates are not unanimous in their judgment, even if only one confederate voices a different opinion, participants are much more likely to resist the urge to conform (only 5-10% conform) than when the confederates all agree. This finding illuminates the power that even a small dissenting minority can have. Interestingly, this finding holds whether or not the dissenting confederate gives the correct answer. As long as the dissenting confederate gives an answer that is different from the majority, participants are more likely to give the correct answer. Males show around half the effect of females (tested in same-sex groups); and conformity is higher among members of an ingroup.[2]

Are we here talking about conformity effect, or the dissention effect? Vital clarification is needed here. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:43, 7 March 2012 (UTC)


Is the "Did you miss me?" message on this page some sort of psychological test? Zuriel147 (talk) 20:55, 4 January 2010 (UTC)

Background on Solomon Asch[edit]

Hey dudes you should put more on this internet site about Asch himself so that people know his background. Please. Thank you.

Hi there. If people want background on Solomon Asch then they are likely to head to the Solomon Asch page. My feeling is that, in the interests of brevity and minimizing redundancy, any content on this article should relate directly to the experiments themselves. I moved some content in accordance with this perspective. Do others disagree? Cheers Andrew (talk) 00:50, 7 May 2012 (UTC)

Asch's conformity experiments are unreplicable[edit]

Only one subject out of hundreds of trials actually sided with the erroneous majority.

See Perrin and Spencer 1980. 09:53, 8 June 2006 (UTC)

Does Perrin and Spencer explain the calculation that derived 33% out of "one out of hundreds?" 00:23, 9 August 2006 (UTC)


while those in the Milgram experiment blamed the experimenter in explaining their behavior. I think the conclusions of both parties experimented on may need to have some sort of documented source.

Factual Correctness vs. Social Norms[edit]

If those lines became an actual person, and if I am 1.6m tall, and A & C are distorted picture of me at 1.4m tall and 1.8m tall, and B is the real me at 1.6m tall, then while it is factually correct to say B as the right answer, but it supposed hurts 'my' feeling, so C is the socially accepted answer. Now, an experimenter uses that rationale to the confederates, what results can we expect then if the confederates outnumber the real subjects?

What? I don't understand your point. The confederates aren't being tested. The experiment is to see whether the subjects would concur with the confederates, and it found they did. Nik42 02:57, 7 August 2007 (UTC)
They should have given an incentive to get the correct answer. That's just my opinion. I haven't really thought about it too much. (talk) 20:32, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

Published in 1953?[edit]

It says it was published in 1953, yet there's no references from 1953. Where's the original published document at? OptimistBen | talk - contribs 16:19, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

First published in 1951; however most famous/common ref is the version from Scientific American in 1955.Lord Spring Onion (talk) 12:02, 27 September 2010 (UTC)


hey, this is for anyone in the uk, just thought id mention about who ever wrote this article; the british psychological society (think thats right) discorage the word 'subject' and prefere the term 'participant'. thought id mention that incase there are any students out there because i think exam boards penalise you if you uses the term subject in regards to a person taking part in an experiment. that goes for any psychological experiments noted on this website.

wikipedia rules!!!xxx —Preceding unsigned comment added by Na108 (talkcontribs) 15:30, 30 September 2008 (UTC)

This is stupid censorship! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:12, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

Method or Results[edit]

This sentences evidently belongs to the results section, not to the methods section.


however, when surrounded by individuals all voicing an incorrect answer, participants provided incorrect responses on a high proportion of the questions (32%). Seventy-five percent of the participants gave an incorrect answer to at least one question.

--Ihaveabutt (talk) 23:58, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

True; also I note that many sources state 37% (or 36.8%) and others say 32%, I wonder why...? Lord Spring Onion (talk) 12:02, 27 September 2010 (UTC)
Sources including the wiki on Solomon Asch say 37% :) Lord Spring Onion (talk) 12:08, 27 September 2010 (UTC)
Ok so it appears that it was 32% when published in 1951, but his 1955 article included further testing and stated "...under group pressure the minority subjects swung to acceptance of the misleading majority's wrong judgments in 36.8 per cent of the selections". Lord Spring Onion (talk) 12:12, 27 September 2010 (UTC)

Editing the page[edit]

I just wanted to let the previous writers of this page know that within the next few days, I will be posting an updated page. I am part of the APS Wiki initiative. Please let me know if you have any further suggestions. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Yvasquez (talkcontribs) 18:38, 17 November 2012 (UTC)

Asch Conformity Experiments Edits November 19, 2012[edit]

Hi U3964057 (aka Andrew),

My name is YVasquez and I am part of the APS wikipedia initiative. I revised the Asch Conformity Experiments article as part of a course requirement for my Ph.D. program. I was wondering if you could explain a bit more what you meant by the following "The Asch conformity experiments demonstrated that uncertainty can arise as an outcome of social reality testing. In relation, this inconsistency has been used to support the position that the theoretical distinction between social reality testing and physical reality testing, as well as the distinction between informational influence and normative influence, are untenable." I googled these sentences and they appeared verbatim over the web. Can you tell me what this means (in your own words)? Thank you so much for helping with my recent edits! I greatly appreciate your input! — Preceding unsigned comment added by Yvasquez (talkcontribs) 07:25, 24 November 2012 (UTC)

Hi Yvasquez. Firstly, it is good to see some attention going into these articles. I hope you are enjoying the process. It is good to see some work going into these sections. My contributions were pretty succinct and a little elaboration is probably meritous. My plan is to have a look at the changes that you make and then see what else might be done to improve these sections.
I believe the reason that the phrasing appears verbatim in across the internet is that many websites will automatically reuse Wikipedia content. The phasing was my best effort at concisely summarising the point made by other authors. Accordingly, if you need a bit more detail then the best bet is probably to look into those references. They cover the points quite explicitly. Turner (2005) is probably the easiest to track down. Do you not have access to those? If not I can try and provide a bit more detail here. Cheers Andrew (talk) 01:05, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Hi Andrew, I read Turner 2005 and I now understand what you meant. It is a great addition - you did a very good job at commuincating Turner's message. Thank you for helping with the article! Best, Yvasquez — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:18, 3 December 2012 (UTC)

Hi Yvasquez. Thank you for the complement and thank you for taking the time to do the reading. I believe that this is the sort of editing behaviour that wikipedia is trying to attract. That being said, the fact that you originally deleted content (that you now think has value) without first checking out the sources is somewhat concerning. Perhaps this is not a reflection on you though, and rather it reflects the need for further fine tuning of that content. I will try to revisit it in the coming months.
I did have a couple of other thoughts on your wikipedia activity. I hope you don’t mind the following unsolicited feedback:
  • You have introduced some material that I feel is only tangentially related to the Asch conformity experiments. I.e. you are moving into a discussion of conformity research in general. I am worried that this is diluting the topic of this page and creating wiki-redundancy. I therefore wonder if such content should be moved to pages dealing with conformity in general.
  • I noticed that you reverted the edit from Wizardman without comment. I think there was an opportunity missed to invoke the Wikipeida tenet of be bold, revert, discuss (with emphasis on discuss). I suspect that Wizardman has some legitimate concerns and it will be a shame if other editors need to spend time on this unnecessarily.
  • More trivially, you should remember to sign you comments. Failing to do so will make obvious to others that you are new to wikipedia.
Anyway, feel free to let me know if you think my observations are off the mark. Otherwise, happy editing. Cheers Andrew (talk) 14:17, 10 December 2012 (UTC)
Thank you for your thoughts Andrew (talk)! I felt as though including a discussion on studies that replicated Asch's experiment was relevant only because it gives readers a glimpse of the impact of his studies at large. I only included three major themes that studies used in replicating his experiment (more than this would have been too much, I feel). In addition, there are different types of conformity, so I do feel that the discussion is best suited for this article.
Moreover, regarding Wizardman, I undid his edit because I felt as though it might be possible that the article wasn't adequately reviewed. I apologize for not writing a comment. I cited all of Asch's major articles so I was unsure why he believed that there were not enough citations.
I am a novice to Wikipedia so I often forget to date and write notes on my edits. I will do that from now on.
Thank you again for your feedback! YVasquez 7:00, 12 December 2012 (PST) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Yvasquez (talkcontribs)

Hi Andrew (talk) 14:17, 10 December 2012 (UTC), I just re-read your message and realized I forgot to respond to your first point - I'm not sure what was deleted from Turner 2005? I left the sentences that I quoted above. I did however try to make some other points clear for others who are not familiar with the theory. Please feel free to edit my additions if you feel that they do not explain the theory well. Perhaps we can try to work together until we feel the interpretation section is adequately represented?

Best, YVasquez, 7:50, 12 December 2012 (PST) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Yvasquez (talkcontribs)

Hi Yvasquez. In responce to your last post, I was referring to the fact that you originally deleted both sections in their entirety [1]. Obviously I think that this was a step in the wrong direction and based on your recent comments it seems you might agree.
With regard to my concerns about tangential content, it is mainly the ‘gender and age’ section that raised my eyebrow. My expectation would be (for the reasons I outlined above) that this section would speak primarily to the role the Asch paradigm has played in this research area, leaving discussion of the actual research area to other articles (e.g. conformity, social influence). I believe that as it stands the section is largely about the latter and not the former. I.e. the section is about ‘gender/age and influence’ rather than ‘the Asch paradigm and gender/age’. I think a quick look at the references you use is illustrative of this. Eagly & Chrvala (1986) only mention Asch in passing. Cooper (1979), Eagly (1978) and Eagly & Carli (1981) all cover a wide range of methodologies. Eagly & Wood (1982) and Berger et al. (1980) do not mention Asch at all.
Anyway, I hope that clarifies things and I am aware that you have said that you will be revisiting these sections. I will therefore be interested to see what you do with the article in the coming months. Cheers Andrew (talk) 04:19, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

HI Andrew, I see what you meant about deleting both sections. I think what happened was that I used an ms word document and pasted the content there and then edited on the ms word document. After completing my edits, I deleted whatever was on wikipedia and posted it onto that section so it appeared as though I deleted it entirely but that was not my intention. I apologize if it appeared that way. I edited that way (on an MS word document) because I was afraid that my internet connection would be interrupted and I would lose the work I did. About the material, now that I think about what you said, I agree. Most material should be removed because Eagly & Carli do not discuss the Asch experiments. However, the other meta-analysis that I included does include gender differences so perhaps we can just shorten that section? Perhaps you can shorten it and then I can look over your edits? Best, Yvasquez 07:16PM, 17 December 2012 (PST)

Hi Yvasquez. I moved a bunch of the material that I felt was better suited to the conformity article over to that location. In the end I felt that it would suffice to mention further use of the paradigm in the intro and provide links to that content. Also, there was some redundancy over at the conformity page so not all got moved across. Anyway, I hope these moves are in line with your expectations, but you can always alter things as you see fit. Cheers Andrew (talk) 13:49, 24 December 2012 (UTC)

Culture section[edit]

The first two sentences of this section ("A plethora of studies have documented cultural differences in conformity. Stanley Milgram's study was among the first to exhibit these differences") doesn't appear to correspond to what the article says, and is confusing.

Could anyone with greater expertise in the topic tell me if this would be a more accurate statement? "Cultural differences in conformity have been referenced in common stereotypes throughout history, but Stanley Milgram's study was among the first to demonstrate them objectively."

Awien (talk) 18:20, 10 December 2012 (UTC)

Thank you Awien (talk)! I will be making these changes soon! YVasquez 7:00, 12 December 2012 (PST)

Gender and age[edit]

This section needs to be rewritten to remove repetition, and to avoid jumping back and forth between the topics. I might volunteer, but don't really have time, and am certainly no expert in the field. Awien (talk) 18:29, 10 December 2012 (UTC)

Thank you Awien (talk)! I will be making these changes soon! YVasquez 7:00, 12 December 2012 (PST)

Mathematical incorrectness[edit]

Of the 37 participants in the control group, less than 1% gave incorrect answers? Perhaps the number of incorrect answers was less than 1% of the total, instead? (Since I have no way to verify which part of the data is wrong, not editing the main article) MtI (talk) 19:32, 31 December 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Hi MtI and welcome to Wikipedia. Good point! Of course, it was error rate. I corrected this. By the way, are you aware that you have not registered an account in the name of MtI? On this page: Wikipedia:Register you can read how to do this. With friendly regards, Lova Falk talk 21:42, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Asch conformity experiments/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Yash! (talk · contribs) 15:33, 2 January 2013 (UTC)

Will do it tomorrow. — Yash [talk] 15:33, 2 January 2013 (UTC)

The article is short and sweet but lacks refs. The article has 24 refs but half of the article still remains unsourced. Out of the refs present, most do not link to anything thus almost the entire article fails verification. This can be accepted on good faith, but linkage is possible so the parameter of ISBNs, and urls need to be filled. The prose quality isn't bad but not good enough for GA. It is neutral but is failing 3 criteria easily. Once each and every fact in the article is sourced with reliable source and those refs would have appropriate linkage to sites where material can be verified, the article would be a GA with some copyediting. Sorry to fail it this time. — Yash [talk] 12:01, 4 January 2013 (UTC)

redundant statistics[edit]

Aren't the two statements in the following sentence redundant? "Overall, in the experimental group, 75% of the participants gave an incorrect answer to at least one question while only 25% never gave an incorrect response." — Preceding unsigned comment added by Razdaz88 (talkcontribs) 12:17, 14 May 2013 (UTC)

I believe so. I have gone ahead and trimmed the sentence. Cheers Andrew (talk) 13:58, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

It could be an optical illusion[edit]

Three simple lines may be easy to distinguish, but you can never be fully sure if you took everything in consideration. Optical illusions are typical for television; television is an entire illusion. It may disturb your perception. It also has an influence of how you perceive real people in daily life. So Asch perhaps mostly observed a media-influence phenomenon. On the other hand, a computer with a compiler installed is great to figure out truths about the world. Being given that heat is vibration of atoms, it lately told me that this also would cause a quick alternating current surrounding the heated object which is too quick to be measured. And this electrical induction could look like light. Me against Einstein. And now we're exactly at the deciding point. Would you rather be called narcissistic or be cheated? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:53, 12 May 2016 (UTC)