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Example Answer for Question 4 Paper 1: AS Psychology, June 2017 (AQA)

AS, A Level

Section A - Social Influence

04 Explain [4 marks]

Suggested Answer: Daniel is most likely to resist the pressure to conform because he is demonstrating an internal locus of control (LOC).

LOC is the extent to which people believe they have control over their lives. Daniel is displaying an internal locus of control as he believes that what happens in his life is the result of his behaviour; whereas, Matthew is demonstrating an external locus of control, as he believes that external factors control his success.

Research by Spector (using Rotter’s LOC scale) found that students with a high internal locus were less likely to conform than those with a high external locus of control, but only in situations of normative social influence. Consequently, Daniel is likely to resist the pressure to conform, as the situation (performing in a school play) is more likely to be linked to normative social influence (the desire to fit in) rather than informational social influence (the desire to be right).

Please Note: These answers have been produced without the knowledge of the mark scheme and merely reflect my attempt at producing a model answer on the day of the exam.

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