Top Psych Experiments / Psychologists cleverly embarrass themselves

OMG! The website is: Online Psychology Degree Guide

Wow! Visit the site for the other 22 most influential psychology “experiments” PLUS many other informative lists offering “5 most” to “50 most” lists in this popular pop-social media format.

The 25 Most Influential Psychological Experiments in History

By Kristen Fescoe Published January 2016

“A Class Divided”

Study Conducted By: Jane Elliott

Study Conducted in 1968 in an Iowa classroom

Experiment Details: Jane Elliott’s famous experiment was inspired by the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the inspirational life that he led. The third grade teacher developed an exercise to help her Caucasian students understand the effects of racism and prejudice.

Elliott divided her class into two separate groups: blue-eyed students and brown-eyed students. On the first day, she labeled the blue-eyed group as the superior group and from that point forward they had extra privileges, leaving the brown-eyed children to represent the minority group. She discouraged the groups from interacting and singled out individual students to stress the negative characteristics of the children in the minority group.

What this exercise showed was that the children’s behavior changed almost instantaneously. The group of blue-eyed students performed better academically and even began bullying their brown-eyed classmates. The brown-eyed group experienced lower self-confidence and worse academic performance. The next day, she reversed the roles of the two groups and the blue-eyed students became the minority group.

At the end of the experiment, the children were so relieved that they were reported to have embraced one another and agreed that people should not be judged based on outward appearances. This exercise has since been repeated many times with similar outcomes.

OMG! It’s ironic that the very studies on which psychologists base their claims are so obviously “super-flawed” that their claim to “be scientists” is easily disproven:

  1. Psychologists claim that use of human subjects as “lab rats” is an ethical “No-No”, but here we see uninformed, not-consenting “captive” children being manipulated (I would call it abuse…) by a teacher! The children suffered distress over the tactics used, including becoming bullies and objects to be bullied. How is this conceptually any different than “punishment” as pedagogy?
  2. The students were “relieved” to be “freed from” this awful manipulation – which automatically is interpreted as instant “moral enlightenment” over the question of physical appearances. This reveals the “social engineering” goals of psychology and the reckless “social puppeteer” attitude that prevails.
  3. This “experiment” (abuse of a word that has specific meaning in science) is “predatory” abuse of power: it may have been “repeated” in various forms (like a “fun prank”) but repetition means that many more children were subjected to manipulation and for no legitimate “reason”.

Car Crash Experiment

Study Conducted by: Elizabeth Loftus and John Palmer

Study Conducted in 1974 at The University of California in Irvine

Experiment Details: Loftus and Palmer set out to prove just how deceiving memories can be. The 1974 Car Crash Experiment was designed to evaluate whether wording questions a certain way could influence a participant’s recall by twisting their memories of a specific event.

  1. And yet, “psychological diagnosis” ARE BASED ON JUST THIS: “self-reporting” or “subjective” opinion of parents, teachers, school counselors, gym teachers, coaches, bystanders and the family dog! A “Psych Wizard” spends three minutes asking “loaded, leading” questions or worse – the “client” is required to fill out a “questionnaire” that is so biased that answers will “reveal” pathology – there are dozens to choose from.
  2. The “researchers” set out to prove what they already know ABOUT THEMSELVES: that manipulation can distort “memories” – it’s their prime directive.

The participants watched slides of a car accident and were asked to describe what had happened as if they were eyewitnesses to the scene. The participants were put into two groups and each group was questioned using different wording such as “how fast was the car driving at the time of impact?” versus “how fast was the car going when it smashed into the other car?” The experimenters found that the use of different verbs affected the participants’ memories of the accident, showing that memory can be easily distorted. 

This research suggests that memory can be easily manipulated by questioning technique, meaning that information gathered after the event can merge with original memory causing incorrect recall or reconstructive memory. The addition of false details to a memory of an event is now referred to as confabulation. This concept has very important implications for the questions used in police interviews of eyewitnesses (-and in psychology) 

As for the validity of “psychology” having a scientific “fact-finding” interest in assessing human behavior, we can see that the “goal” is to “test” manipulation techniques on human lab rats. It’s utterly non-objective, non-scientific and unethical. Psychologists refuse to be accountable for “proof or results” in theory or practice. 

Cognitive Dissonance Experiment

Study Conducted by: Leon Festinger and James Carlsmith

Study Conducted in 1957 at Stanford University

Experiment Details: The concept of cognitive dissonance refers to a situation involving conflicting attitudes, beliefs or behaviors. This conflict produces an inherent feeling of discomfort leading to a change in one of the attitudes, beliefs or behaviors to minimize or eliminate the discomfort and restore balance.

Again, the “basis” is putting humans in situations which manipulate personal morality, group ethics, social obedience, and “pain” in order to find out how these may be “applied” in contexts such as the classroom, workplace, consumer markets, media and advertising – and in government. The conclusion is simple: Lie, and use “bribes” and punishment – the Social Pyramid as we experience it every day. Psychology “intends” to legitimize lies, deception and manipulation as “scientifically valid” in human relationships. This is sick.

Cognitive dissonance was first investigated by Leon Festinger, after an observational study of a cult that believed that the earth was going to be destroyed by a flood. (Christians, perhaps?) Out of this study was born an intriguing experiment conducted by Festinger and Carlsmith where participants were asked to perform a series of dull tasks (such as turning pegs in a peg board for an hour). Participant’s initial attitudes toward this task were highly negative. (Anecdotal, hearsay, subjective opinion, not an “experiment” at all)

They were then paid either $1 or $20 to tell a participant waiting in the lobby (lie to them) that the tasks were really interesting. Almost all of the participants agreed to walk into the waiting room and persuade the next participant that the boring experiment would be fun. (The human lab rats were paid to lie and most agreed – where is motivation in this? Were they “students” who always need cash, or individuals who would lie because “an authority figure” asked them to? Who are these human beings ?)

When the participants were later asked to evaluate the experiment, (no, they were asked to evaluate their own experience) the participants who were paid only $1 rated the tedious task as more fun and enjoyable than the participants who were paid $20 to lie. Being paid only $1 is not sufficient incentive for lying and so those who were paid $1 experienced dissonance. They could only overcome that dissonance by coming to (being lied to) believe that the tasks really were interesting and enjoyable. Being paid $20 provides a reason for turning pegs and there is therefore no dissonance.

OMG! Where do I begin with dissecting this monstrosity of “social logic” and magical thinking?

(I need “fuel” – time for breakfast…LOL)


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