a positive change in the performance of a group of persons taking part in an experiment or study due to their perception of being singled out for special consideration.
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Origin of Hawthorne effect
First recorded in 1960–65; after the Hawthorne Works of the Western Electric Company, Cicero, Ill., where such an effect was observed in experiments
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for hawthorne effect
/ (ˈhɔːˌθɔːn) /
Word Origin for Hawthorne effect
from the Western Electric Company's Hawthorne works in Chicago, USA, where it was discovered during experiments in the 1920s
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012