The Milgram Experiment was conducted by Stanley Milgram in 1963 to investigate how far people would go in obeying an instruction if it involved harming another person. The experiment was designed to test the extent to which people would obey authority figures, even when it involved causing harm to others.

Aim: The aim of the experiment was to investigate whether people would obey orders from an authority figure even if it goes against their conscience.

Procedure: Milgram advertised in a newspaper for male participants to take part in a study of memory and learning at Yale University. Participants were paired with another person and drew lots to find out who would be the ‘learner’ and who would be the ‘teacher.’ The draw was fixed so that the participant was always the teacher, and the learner was one of Milgram’s confederates (pretending to be a real participant). The learner (a confederate called Mr. Wallace) was taken into a room and had electrodes attached to his arms, and the teacher and researcher went into a room next door that contained an electric shock generator and a row of switches marked from 15 volts (Slight Shock) to 375 volts (Danger: Severe Shock) to 450 volts (XXX). The shocks in Stanley Milgram’s obedience experiments were not real. The “learners” were actors who were part of the experiment and did not actually receive any shocks. However, the “teachers” (the real participants of the study) believed the shocks were real, which was crucial for the experiment to measure obedience to authority figures even when it involved causing harm to others.

Results: Milgram found that participants obeyed the experimenter at an unexpectedly high rate: 65% of the participants gave the learner the 450-volt shock. Of the 40 participants in the study, 26 delivered the maximum shocks, while 14 stopped before reaching the highest levels. All of the participants shocked the learner up to 300 volts.

Conclusion: Milgram concluded that humans are very likely to obey orders from somebody with authority even if it is against their conscience. The study raised questions about research ethics of scientific experimentation because of its potential harm on human subjects.