In another attempt to gain extra credit -- and thus a greater chance of escaping Greendale -- Annie manages to secure a place in Professor Duncan's experiment, in which the "Duncan Principle"[[note]] The longer people are forced to wait, the more control is lost by the ego, the more gained by the id, resulting in "a surprisingly predictable emotional eruption" -- i.e. a good old-fashioned temper tantrum[[/note]] is to be tested, by convincing Troy and Abed to volunteer to be test subjects. However, this leads to unforeseen factors the researchers did not anticipate, which ends up making it unclear who are the ''real'' test subjects.

Jeff and Shirley begin to bond over a recently-discovered mutual shared interest -- making fun of Britta's new boyfriend, Vaughn. However, their mutual passion for gossip about him will end up creating rifts in their group.

Has a [[YMMV/CommunityS1E04SocialPsychology YMMV page.]]
!!The ''Series/{{Community}}'' episode "Social Psychology" provides examples of:
* ArtisticLicenseStatistics: Duncan's FreakOut at the end of his experiment isn't really called for if one considers that a single statistical outlier, even one as extreme as Abed, doesn't invalidate the results of the experiment (putting aside the problems mentioned in NoControlGroup). In fact, in a sufficiently large sample, one would ''expect'' such outliers to occur. The FreakOut likely happened because watching Duncan [[HoistByHisOwnPetard fall victim to his own principle]] was both [[RuleOfFunny hilarious]] and [[LaserGuidedKarma satisfying.]]
** Consider also that he's been awake for well over twenty-six hours watching a single person fail to react to anything and isn't exactly an exemplar of his profession to begin with.
* BerserkButton: Upon being informed that the experiment was going to start late, Chang immediately exploded in a violent, childish temper tantrum, involving throwing furniture and screaming "MOMMY!" Since the purpose of the experiment was to test how long people would put up with being delayed before exploding, and Chang literally didn't last more than a few seconds, his SitcomArchNemesis Professor Duncan was quite pleased:
-->'''Duncan:''' Houston, we have an idiot.[[note]]This line is oddly not in the DVD release, instead replaced with "And they're off..."[[/note]]
* BilingualBonus: The Spanish blackboard is shown with Ken Jeong's Korean name written in bad hangul.
* EroticDream: Shirley's last bit of gossip to Jeff is that Britta had a sexy dream about him.
* FanonDiscontinuity: In-universe example, for the ''Franchise/IndianaJones'' movies.
-->'''Annie:''' I just got the first three because...\\
'''Annie and Abed:''' ... the fourth one blows!
* TheFriendsWhoNeverHang: [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]] by Abed when he mentions that [[Series/{{Friends}} Chandler and Phoebe]] rarely had any stories together.
* GiftedlyBad: Vaughn's poetry.
* GossipyHens: Shirley and Jeff. Troy and Abed in TheTag.
* HeelRealization: Annie is left looking very uncomfortable after Troy's breakdown and Abed's WhatTheHellHero speech following the experiment.
* HiddenPurposeTest: Duncan's experiment, in which the subjects are told to wait to be called to be tested, when in fact the waiting is the real test.
* HotForTeacher: Professor Duncan assumes Annie is hitting on him before she even asks him anything, then immediately rates her an 8 (which is "a British 10"). This, too, was oddly not present in the DVD release.
* HypocriticalHumour: After ranting -- at length -- about a student evaluation feedback card he received, how hurtful and racist it was, and the lengths he went to in order to discover who the evaluator was:
-->'''Senor Chang:''' ''[To Annie, very ''very'' creepily]'' Who's erratic and unstable ''now'', Princess ''Gringa''? ''[Kisses her on the forehead]''[[note]]This was also not in the DVD release, instead replaced with an example of Chang teaching something that is quite obviously not spanish[[/note]]
* LaserGuidedKarma: The researchers take a certain amount of smug pleasure and gloating entertainment in the suffering and eventual breakdowns of the focus group, so it's a fairly just comeuppance when Abed manages to turn the experiment back on them and reduce them to stress breakdowns after making them wait twenty-six hours for a reaction from him.
* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Annie is left looking very shaken and guilty after Troy's breakdown and Abed's confrontation with her following the experiment.
* NoControlGroup: If this had been a real experiment, the subjects should have been isolated from each other. Experiencing previous breakdowns may have influenced the breakdown of later subjects. Of course, neither the professor leading the experiment nor the institution in this case are exactly exemplars of scientific research...
* OrphanedPunchline: Either Britta heard something more we didn't, or she's just pandering to Vaughn.
-->'''Vaughn:''' I asked politely and the panda took his pants off.\\
'''Britta:''' ''(exaggerated laughter)'' I never even knew that's what asexual meant.
* ProfessorGuineaPig: Inadvertent, Prof. Duncan becomes the subject of the Duncan Principle.
* TheRainman: Lampshaded after Abed has managed to sit perfectly still for twenty-six hours waiting in a room simply because Annie asked him to:
-->'''Professor Duncan:''' It's ''you''! It's your fault!\\
'''Annie:''' But... you told me to bring subjects!\\
'''Professor Duncan:''' Yeah, ''subjects''! Not ''RainMan''!
* ShapedLikeItself: Pierce says that his ear-noculars give him "sonic hearing." As Abed points out, "All hearing is sonic."
* ShoutOut: "Oh my God, my life is ''Series/DegrassiHigh!''"
* SpoofAesop:
-->'''Pierce:''' You see Jeff. There was certain things man was not meant to hear. We were designed, by whatever entity you choose, to hear what's in this range and really this range alone because you know whose talking to us in this range? The people we love.
* TheStoic: Upon being told to just sit and wait, while everyone else around him ends up throwing childish tantrums and storming out, Abed just calmly, without expressing any apparent emotion (as he tells her later, he was actually ''livid''), sits and waits. For ''twenty-six hours''.
-->'''Professor Duncan:''' ''[Watching video footage of Abed sitting perfectly still, staring into space]'' ... Is it on pause?!\\
'''Annie:''' Nope. That's just him.
* SuperSenses: Ear-nocular.
* TantrumThrowing: Duncan starts doing this during his breakdown scene.
* WhatTheHellHero: Neither Troy nor Abed are pleased with Annie when they learn the true purpose of the experiment (although Abed is [[TheStoic much better at concealing it]]). Annie's ultimately left looking very uncomfortable after Troy's breakdown during the experiment and Abed's confrontation with her afterwards.