Martin OrneI just came across a wonderful website by the Psychology department at the University of Pennsylvania dedicated to the late Martin Orne. Orne was a psychiatrist, clinical psychologist, and researcher, and he made an enormous contribution to the field of hypnosis research in particular. One idea which he is credited with is that of 'demand characteristics' - the idea that human participants in research studies will consciously or unconsciously try to 'please' the experiementer which can bias the results. In hypnosis research, since it is often difficult for participants to be blind to the experimenters goals, Orne developed the use of the real-simular paradigm where a control group of low-hypnotisable participants are used in addition to other groups. The logic is that 'lows' will try to please the experimenter to the same extent as the other groups and any group differences can thus not be attributed to demands.


The website contains full text of many of Orne's papers and book chapters and is well worth a read.

 

Link to Martin Orne homepage at UPenn.edu

Link to the full text of Orne's classic demand characteristics paper

 

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