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Hawthorne effect Syllabification: Haw·thorne ef·fect

Definition of Hawthorne effect in English:


The alteration of behavior by the subjects of a study due to their awareness of being observed.
Example sentences
  • As in any observational study, the Hawthorne effect is a possibility.
  • This observation suggests that the act of monitoring produces benefits beyond the so-called Hawthorne effect.
  • The modest improvement we observed is probably explained by a Hawthorne effect.


1960s: from Hawthorne, the name of one of the Western Electric Company's plants in Chicago, where the phenomenon was first observed in the 1920s.

Definition of Hawthorne effect in:
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