"Little Albert" – One of the most terrible experiments in history

Throughout history, humans have performed many famous experiments, among which it is impossible not to mention the very scary experiment called “Little Albert”.

In 1920, John Watson, a psychologist who was always obsessed with Ivan Pavlov’s research on conditioned reflexes , was also the father of behavior theory, and always advocated using orphans to participate. into their studies.

"Little Albert" - One of the most terrible experiments in history
Nine-month-old baby boy Albert participated in the experiment.

He wanted to test whether fear was innate or conditioned, so he chose a 9-month-old baby named Albert, the son of a nurse in the hospital.

After contacting Albert’s mother, Watson talked to her about the experiment and that her child would have a reward each day, but he did not explain how the experiment worked.

Nine-month-old baby boy Albert, better known as “little Albert” took part in the experiment. At first, Watson often gave small animals such as puppies, rabbits or white mice as gifts for the boy. Albert was very fond of them at first and showed no fear at all. After a basic emotion test, Watson concluded that Albert was not afraid of small animals.

Two months later, Watson officially embarked on his “horrific” experiment. Watson gives Albert a guinea pig. Whenever the boy touched the mouse, Watson would make a loud sound behind his back by hammering the steel rod hanging overhead, causing both the boy and the mouse to panic.

At this point, Albert began to cry and was very afraid of loud sounds. This situation was repeated many times after that, and Albert began to show fear of the mouse and crawled up, crying with fear every time the mouse appeared.

Later, Watson discovered that Albert was not only afraid of guinea pigs, but that his fear also began to generalize, even to puppies, white fur coats, cotton, etc., All things with feathers scare the boy.

"Little Albert" - One of the most terrible experiments in history
The “Little Albert” experiment then caused widespread criticism, mainly about the ethics of the experiment.

Through this experiment, Watson demonstrated that the emotion of fear can be learned through conditioned reflexes . But before Watson could continue the experiment, someone took Albert away.

What makes many people indignant is the fact that scientists have caused children to suffer psychological and physical injuries when their ears are too fragile.

The “Little Albert” experiment subsequently caused widespread criticism in the academic world, mainly about the ethics of the experiment.

Since this experiment, the American Psychological Association has developed an experimental rule that prohibits people from conducting unethical experiments to ensure ethical issues for scientific experiments .