The participant , who believed they were taking part in an experiment that studied the effect of punishment on memory, arrived and the roles were drawn. The draw, however was rigged so the participant was always the teacher. They were put in separate rooms after the teacher was given an example shock and saw the learner strapped to the chair.
How far people would go in obeying an instruction if it involved harming another person?
I'm the learner!
I'm the teacher!
The teacher gave a series of words that the learner had to match in a memory test. For every answer they get wrong they received a shock which increases by 15 volts each time. If the teacher objects the experimenter gave 4 different prompts. 65% of participants completely obeyed the experimenter, administering the full 450 volts.
will he suffer any long term physical effects?
I don't think we should continue, I'm hurting him.
It is absolutely essential that you continue
Aaah! I can't stand the pain
All participants were defriefed after the experiment to make sure they all left in as good a psychological state as when they arrived. The participent also met the learner again to make sure there was no tension between them. Although they could not do anything about the physical harm they came to throughout the experiment.
Don't worry, you didn't really kill anyone, in fact most people would give the man a 450 volt shock if a man in a lab coat told them to