Investigating Psychology Assignment Sample

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Introduction Of Investigating Psychology Assignment

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People have two different states of behaviour while they are within a social situation. The thesis statement outlines differences and similarities between Burger's Replication study and Milgram’s obedience study. It is going to consider the aim of both of the researchers as well as provide brief information about both studies and find the similarities and differences for each category. Additionally, it will compare methods of both researchers that the researchers used, as well as it will identify similarities and dissimilarities between the findings of two studies. 


Stanley Milgram carried one of major famous studies of obedience within psychology study out. Milgram conducted an experiment by paying attention to the conflict between personal conscience and obedience to authority (Gibson et al. 2018). Milgram examined justifications regarding acts of genocide provided by those accused of World War II (Brace & Byford, 2012). After the experiment of Stanley Milgram, Jerry Burger replicated this experiment and found that the compliance rates within replication were a bit lower compared to those identified by Milgram.

Although Burger replicates the study of Milgram, there are a few similarities between these two studies. The first similarity is about the research aim or purpose. The purpose of the Milgram obedience experiment was to test the extent of the willingness of humans to obey orders from authority figures. Similarly, Burger's experiment was finding out whether same outcomes as Milgram’s obedience experiment re-occur if it is replicated with the modern participants or not (Gibson, 2019). Additionally, both studies tried to find out whether personality variables such as locus of control and empathy control obedience or not. Another similarity between the selected two psychological studies is the provided intervention. For example, the test of Milgram obedience incorporated the electric shock (Brace & Byford, 2012). Similarly, Burger used the same intervention for the replication study to understand whether his results would get similar results or not.

Another similarity of these two studies is that both studies contain learner, teacher, and experimenter. In both cases, teachers ask learnerssome questions, and if learners give any wrong answers, teachers will deliver a shock. 

However, since Burger had tried to replicate Milgram’s study, thus, several dissimilarities had been present because Burger had considered the same research aim and intervention; how were changed other procedure to get an insight whether these changes could make any changes in the outcomes or it would give the same results with Milgram’s study. 

The first difference between Burger's Replication and Milgram obedience studies is that Stanley Milgram mainly paid attention to general human condition and human behaviour. Thus, study is entirely different from replication study within the sense that researchers relied upon Universalist assumption (Burger, 2009). The Universalist assumption within psychological research assumes that observable behaviour in a particular population is common between the world's populations. Additionally, the obedience study of Milgram lacked representatives as vital aspects of psychological research.

Stanley Milgram recruited men of a particular age group (20 to 50 years old) as participants. On the contrary, this selection process was poor sampling as it did not represent the whole population of American society as well as did not represent the entire world in general. Stanley regarded the position of every person as vital. Therefore, Stanley illustrated the laboratory's layout. However, in case of Burger's replication, he did not provide a layout of his laboratory. That means the laboratory layout was another difference between these two studies. Later, peer-views upon Milgram’s study disclosed that this study had violated ethics of the psychological research. Milgram was the first researcher who recommended the utilisation of shocks upon human participants, as well as it has continued for attracting outcry from fellow psychologists. Based on this information, another difference has been identified between Burger’s replication and Milgram obedience studies. The identified difference is context and setting of study. At that time, Milgram utilised male participants as representative of the population of the world. Selection process was different from Burger's replication study. Conversely, Srivastava (2020) stated that Burger had considered both females and males for society’s true representatives. A remarkable difference within Burger’s replication research is that it was first recognised psychological research in a few situations that did not generalise behaviour of humans; therefore, Burger required comprehensive research. 

Another difference between Milgram obedience and Burger’s replication is based on their methodological approach. For example, in the Burger replication study, Burger used large samples, which gave accurate outcomes as compared to Milgram experiment (Grzyb&Dolinski, 2017). While replicating the study of Milgram, Burger made sure that the replication study was paying attention to explaining the extent of obedience within modern society (, 2021). Thus, the crucial difference within Burger's study was theutilisation of both female and male participants.

The similarities show that both the researchers used electric shock for the experiment. However, Milgram has given the electric shock in three different segments. For example, in Milgram’s study, the first electric shock was 15 Voltz, which was a slight shock, the next level was a severe shock (375 Voltz), and the last level was 450 Voltz. However, in the case of Milgram, it majorly gave a 45-volt electric shock. In contrast, Burger's replication study used 15 Voltz. Regarding the shock giving procedure, dissimilarityhas been noticed that is about the condition of giving a shock. For example, in Milgram experiment, a list of word pairs gave to the learner to learn, then teacher tested them though asking naming any word as well as asking learners for recalling their pair from list of 4 potential choices. However, in Burger's experiment, teachers were asked 25 MCQs (multiple-choice questions) through guidance that they had to answer them using a buzzer. Thus, both experiments have only a few similarities and a number of differences.


This essay has aimed to outline the similarities and dissimilarities between two psychological studies for obedience. It has identified the similarities and differences between Milgram’s obedience experiment and Burger's study, which replicated Milgram's experiment. From this discussion, it can be concluded that Burger stuck to the purpose of Milgram’s study as well, as their provided intervention was the same. However, besides these similarities, many differences have been present, for example, changes in sample population, sample size, disclosure of laboratory layout and power of electric shock.

Reference list

Brace, N., & Byford, J. (2012). Investigating Psychology: Key Concepts, Key Studies, Key Approaches. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press.

Burger, J. M. (2009). Replicating Milgram: Would people still obey today?. American Psychologist64(1), 1.

Gibson, S. (2019). Obedience without orders: Expanding social psychology's conception of ‘obedience’. British Journal of Social Psychology58(1), 241-259. Doi:

Gibson, S., Blenkinsopp, G., Johnstone, E., & Marshall, A. (2018).Just following orders?The rhetorical invocation of ‘obedience’in Stanley Milgram's post?experiment interviews. European Journal of Social Psychology48(5), 585-599.

Grzyb, T., &Dolinski, D. (2017). Beliefs about obedience levels in studies conducted within the milgram paradigm: Better than average effect and comparisons of typical behaviors by residents of various nations. Frontiers in psychology8, 1632.Doi:, (2021).BURGER (2009) REPLICATING MILGRAM. Retrieved on: 23 November 2021 from,are%20%E2%80%9Ctime%20locked%E2%80%9D).

Srivastava, V. (2020).Milgram's experiment and gender biases in Indian context.

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