Apply: Non-Conformity Lab
Take a moment now to apply the concepts you learned from the readings this week. Please scroll down to read the instructions for this assignment.Content Requirements
The subject of this week’s Apply assignment is related to conformity, which we covered in week 1. However, we wanted to wait until the second week to introduce the Living Lab. During this course, you will be given the opportunity to engage in a series of living experiments. In other words, rather than reading about an experiment, we will be relying on your personal interactions to help you personally experience topics discussed in your text.These experiences can be incredibly enriching, since you will see the concepts we are discussing come to life right before your eyes. To make these labs work, keep in mind that you should try and keep your activities private, since telling people what you are doing can bias your experience.In order to complete this first lab, you need to choose a “Day of Non-Conformity”. On this day, you will attempt to live out an entire day in which none of your actions are dictated or decided by the social norms expressed by your cultural environment. Your actions should not be influenced by your desire to be accepted in a group, to be perceived in a certain way, or to be liked. The essence of this lab is to discover and act upon your true self, not the self you try to be (unless, of course, that is your true self).Be sure to evaluate every activity you participate in. Ask why you do the things you do, the way you do. Are your actions a reflection of conformity? If so, try to discover your own authentic belief. Don’t dismiss why you are watching a certain show or sitting at a certain table. Analyze everything. Move beyond simply avoiding the obvious conformist things you do and go for deep authenticity. At the same time, be careful that you don’t go too far and actually conform to nonconformity. The goal is to be authentic, not necessarily different.What might non-conformity look like? Well, think about those things you simply do because everyone else does or because you believe that is what is expected of you. Stand at work (instead of sitting), try wearing non-matching colors, eat dinner for breakfast and vice-versa, sit at a different table, sleep on the other side of the bed, talk to people in the elevator, skip down the hallway I think you are getting the point. Non-conformity is about breaking the rules of convention. It is the act of going against the flow, when the flow is simply the product of habit, tradition, or blind following.Caution: Sometime you may need to step out of the requirements of the lab for your own safety please act responsibly. Oh by the way, not doing this assignment does not count for an act of non-conformity!You will submit a 2-page, APA reaction paper. Some points to consider:When preparing for the Living Lab, how did you mentally define conformity/non-conformity?
How did this definition affect how you acted during the duration of the Living Lab?
What were the psychological and/or psychosocial pros and cons of this experiment?
How did others respond to your actions?
Was your behavior different from normal?
What activities did you need to adjust and which stayed the same?
Describe ways in which your own level of conformity was revealed through this experiment.
What are the psychological and/or psychosocial factors that cause you to conform?
What are the differences between the “normal” you and the “Living Lab” you?
Which “you” did you like better? Why?