Bibliographies of Camp-related Research

Bibliographies of Camp-related Research

An Experimental Study of Conformity Behavior as a Small Group Phenomenon
Feldman, R.A.
Small Group Behavior, 5.4 (1974) 404-426

Purpose:
Apply new research design to analyze conformity behavior of subjects in small groups who have lived together and developed a broad set of shared norms.

Sample:
538 boys and girls, ages 9-16 (61 cabin groups) attending four different summer camps for Jewish children.

Methods/Instruments:

  • Normative integration index for groups. Consists of 20 normative behaviors.
  • Experimenter presents two multiple choice questions to the subjects in group setting. The respondent is given an answer sheet to circle the answer and provide his/her name. The subjects are not allowed to speak to one another. The experimenter then tabulates the responses and presents the two answers that received no votes as the two that were given most often and indicates that all but one of the respondents chose between the two answers. The subjects are then given another answer sheet and allowed to change their answer to one of the top two or leave it as is. Subjects are also told that their individual answers will be revealed to everyone at the end of the session. Subjects were identified as conforming if s/he changed his/her answer to one of the two "popular" choices in both instances.
  • Analysis: Multiple classification analysis.

Results:

  • Small groups (6-8 members) have higher conformity scores than larger groups (9-12 members).
  • Time spent together or social class is not associated with normative integration.
  • Proportions of conformers in groups was observed to be positively associated with group normative integration, however, this finding is not statistically significant.

 

Tags: