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Abstract

Psychology as a discipline is alive and well. Psychology is so much more than just therapy or research with rats. Psychological science is applied to real life in a myriad of ways every day. One excellent example is the use of four classic psychological experiments as a foundation for the Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement (ABLE) training curriculum. This contemporary police training program seeks to reduce harm and improve the national law enforcement culture. The four classic psychological science experiments that are used in this evidence-informed curriculum include Diffusion of Responsibility from Darley and Latane’, the Seminary Experiment from Darley and Batson, Obedience to Authority from Milgram, and the Power of the Bystander from Staub. A succinct review is provided for each of these experiments. Then, their utilization within the ABLE curriculum is presented. The implementation and progress of the ABLE program is cited as an example of the impact of classic psychological research on modern law enforcement training. This article documents that psychological science experiments are currently used in real-world educational programs. Despite the fact that these classic experiments were conducted 50 years ago, they continue to impact and influence individuals and training in the 21st century.

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