I don’t know how to handle this Sociology question and need guidance.

Hawthorne Effect

Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7RHjwmVGhs

Watch the Following Video on the Hawthorne Effect. Please also read the following questions and answer the following questions (300-350 words). Also, remember to comment on at least 2 of your classmates posts (100-150 words each). please comment on post 1 & 2

Question A & B (300-350 words)

a.) Why would subjects act differently if they knew they are being studied? What reasons or factors might account for this?

b.) Do you believe that you would behave differently if you knew you were being studied? How so?

Post 1 (please comment 100-150 words)

a.) Why would subjects act differently if they knew they are being studied? What reasons or factors might account for this?

As the studies indicated, when people were being watched while they were at work, production increased. Why would this happen? Well, you’re being watched. Just think of you doing your job when a supervisor is looking versus when a supervisor isn’t. You might check your phone, or be a little slower at your job: It’s natural. When you’re being watched (such as in the Hawthorne studies) you want to be working at optimal pace and perfection. Nobody wants to look bad in front of somebody else. I think that wanting to look good in front of whoever is conducting the studies plays a HUGE role in what subject would act differently. And the fact that they are recording what they are seeing, so you want them to be recording something good. So, changing the lights wasn’t the factor that improved productivity of workers to amazing heights, it was the sole fact that a study was being conducted that lit a fire under their butts and got them moving quick.

b.) Do you believe that you would behave differently if you knew you were being studied? How so?

I’d love to sit here and lie and say that it would be business as usual if I were being studied, but it’s natural to behave differently when you’re being watched. I know that yes, when I go into work on a normal day, I try to perform to the best of my abilities. But when I know I’m not under a microscope, I feel more relaxed. When you’re being studied, you want to look extremely productive and efficient, and in that instance when I find time to take a breath for a moment, I skip on that and find something else that I can begin to do. It all goes hand in hand with wanting to look good and for me, I feel guilty if I know a manager is near by and I am not doing everything I can to be performing at the best of my abilities. An example of this phenomenon in nursing is when you take pulse and respirations. If you tell the patient when you’re counting their breaths, they always try to change them! So, you leave that out and say you’re taking vitals, and then they don’t feel as “studied.”

Post 2 (Please comment 100-150 words)

Subjects might act different if they knew they were being studied because I believe it’s human nature to change characteristics we may feel we are being scrutinized. For instance in the medical field one of the vital signs we measure is respirations. We are Taught to never let the patient know that we are counting their respirations because it will alter their breathing rate and pattern if they know they are being counted. We see the same changes in behavior when we think we are being judged. For instance depending on where I’m going I’m going to alter the way I dress based on who is going to be see me. Some factors that might influence this would be if I am ashamed of a certain behavior or characteristic I have that I believe is going to be getting studied. For instance if I think somebody is studying my manners and I don’t think I have the best manners I am going to go out of my way to behave in a way I probably wouldn’t actually behave on a day-to-day basis. Also, if I was getting studied regarding something I don’t normally think about while I’m doing it, like my speech patterns. I am actually going to focus and pay attention on that. That’s going to alter the results of the study because that’s not something I normally consciously think about. That is why we don’t tell people we are counting their respirations. When you are studying something people do unconsciously like breathing or speaking the results would only be accurate If they didn’t know they were being studied because as soon as they consciously think about it it will alter their baseline.

I think everybody would change the way they behave if they knew they were being studied even if they were doing it subconsciously. Instinct would take over. Have you ever watched your dog on a camera when you’re not home? I think this would be amplified if it was something I was concerned I was lacking in or ashamed of. Or if I knew the study could impact me negatively if I didn’t meet a certain standard. For example at my job we have a regular hand hygiene audit. Someone does a hand hygiene study in our emergency room once a month. We are observed. I am Constantly conscious of hand hygiene in my job but if I notice the auditor I am extra diligent and washing my hands in situations I might not Like when I walk in a room with no patients in it to stock some supplies.