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PSY 302
Alba A.

Class Notes – Lecture 2 – Chapter 1 continued & Chapter 2 A. The Scientific Method An approach to testing beliefs that involves:  Choosing a question  Formulating a hypothesis (i.e., an educated guess)  Testing the hypothesis  Drawing a conclusion Importance of Appropriate Measurement - Relevance to hypotheses - Reliability - Validity Reliability and Validity  Is a particular test a good measure of development?  Must be both reliable and valid to  Reliability: does test given consistent outcome each time?  Validity: does test really measure what it purports to measure?  Some measure may be reliable one time but not other  How you test validity? Most part is what u believe in Reliability and Validity  Measurement (cont’d)  Validity  Extent to which a test accurately reflects what it is intended to measure  Validity = reliability  Reliability ≠ validity  Ex. Intelligence and a tape measure Reliability  The degree to which independent measurements of a given behavior are consistent  Interrater reliability: The amount of agreement in the observations of different raters who witness the same behavior. quality  Test-retest reliability: Attained when measures of performance are similar on two or more occasions  quantity 1 Validity  Refers to the degree to which a test or experiment measures what it is intended to measure  Researchers strive for two types of validity:  Internal validity is the degree to which effects observed within experiments can be attributed to the variables that the researcher intentionally manipulated. --> being able to say that the outcome is because of the manipulation that I did. High internal validity: the researcher has control the experiment as much as possible  Test scores: those who studied more get more mark, this is low internal validity unless the experimenter control other factors that might affect the mark ex. Motivation level, gender, etc  External validity: is the degree to which results can be generalized beyond the particulars of the research. Questions of Interest Table 1.3 B. Contexts for gathering Data about Children 1. Interviews  Structured interview: A research procedure in which all participants are asked to answer the same questions.  try not to deviate from script, more general knowledge  Clinical interview: A procedure in which questions are adjusted in accord with the answers the interviewee provides  detailed knowledge, the interviewer will deviate from the script questioned  Caveat: Although interviews yield a great deal of data quite quickly and can provide in-depth information about individual children, the answers to interview questions are often biased. 2. Naturalistic observation  Observe situation without intervening  Examine how events/behaviors unfold in a natural setting  Pepler & Craig (1995)  bullying in the school yard  Problem with naturalistic observation  naturally occurring contexts vary on many dimensions; many behavior occur only occasionally in the everyday environment.\  Takes longer to observe the desired question that’s wanted to be observed 3. Structured observation  Exposure to a setting that might cue behavior in question  compliance of children with parents. boys are more likely to be distracted and less compliant than girls  There are so many variables to answer the why 2 Naturalistic Observation  Used when the primary goal of research is to describe how children behave in their usual environments  Limitations  Because naturally occurring contexts vary on many dimensions, it is often hard to know which ones influenced the behavior of interest.  Also, many behaviors occur only occasionally in everyday environments, and so researchers’ opportunities to study them through naturalistic observation are reduced.  Observer influence (biased?) Structured Observation - Involves presenting an identical situation to a number of children and recording each child’s behavior, enabling direct comparisons of different children’s behavior and making it possible to establish the generality of behavior across different tasks  Limitation  Does not provide as much information about children’s subjective experiences and does not provide as natural a situation. Contexts for Gatherin.g Data Table 1.4 C. Correlational & Causation  The primary goal of studies that use correlational designs is to determine how variables are related to one another.  A correlation is the association between two variables.  The direction and strength of a correlation is measured by a statistic called the correlation coefficient. Correlation Scatterplot Correlation Scatterplot (cont’d) positive correlation independent variable increase, dep variable also increase. Ex. R= 0.9 Correlation Scatterplot (cont’d) negative correlation  ind incr, dep dec. ex. R= -0.9 Correlation ≠ Causation!  Direction-of-causation problem  It is not possible to tell from a correlation which variable is the cause and which is the effect. 3 Third-variable problem A correlation between two variables may arise from both being influenced by some third variable. • Third variable problem •If A and B are correlated: A can cause B or B cause A, or can have C, which can be a potential factor problem Correlational Studies  Advantages  If you can measure it, you can study it  Disadvantages  No cause and effect  “Correlation does not equal causation”  Two variables that are correlated  Example:  Variable A = use of air conditioning  Variable B = consumption of ice cream  Example:  Variable A = size of feet  Variable B = spelling ability Experimental Designs  Allow inferences about causes and effects  Rely on random assignment, a procedure in which each child has an equal chance of being assigned to any group within an experiment Experimental Designs  Experimental control refers to the ability of the researcher to determine the specific experiences that children have during the course of an experiment.  Children in the experimental group receive an experience of interest, the independent variable.  Those in the control group do not receive this experience.  The dependent variable is a behavior that is hypothesized to be affected by the independent variable. 4 Aggression & TV Viewing Study  Leibert & Baron (1972)  Hypothesis: Children more willing to hurt another child after viewing aggressive film  Method:  136 Boys and Girls (5 - 9 yrs old)  Experimental group: viewed violent episodes  Control group: viewed non-violent episodes Aggression & TV Viewing Study (cont’d)  Leibert & Baron (1972) (cont’d)  Method (cont’d)  Children to play with imaginary “child” in an adjoining room  Given “hurt” or “help” option  Measured how long and how often pressed “hurt”  IV?  low, didn’t consider other possible factors  EV?  this would really be depended on your value system  Results  experimental group pressed hurt button more often and longer  exposure to TV can cause interpersonal aggression. Quasi-experimental Studies  Looks like an experiment BUT  No random assignment  No experimental control  Advantages natural groups that form can be great of interest  Disadvantages  there might not be ethical reasons that the group was formed, can’t make cause and effect inferences because it’s not an experiment, there’s no random assignment Correlational vs. Experimental Designs Table 1.5 D. Designs for Examining Development 1. Cross-Sectional Designs  Children of different ages are compared on a given behavior or characteristic over a short period of time 2. Longitudinal Designs - Used when the same children are studied twice or more over a substantial period of time  problem: kids drop out or move, they didn’t stay in the study 5 3. Microgenetic Designs Used to provide an in-depth depiction of processes that produce change  In this approach, children who are thought to be on the verge of an important developmental change are provided with heightened exposure to the type of experience that is believed to produce the change and are studied intensely while their behavior is in transition.   bombard the child with different math questions count the numbers 1,2,3,4, … or just add  Used only when we are looking for something Comparison of Designs – table 1.6 E. Ethical Issues in Child-Development Research Researchers have a vital responsibility to anticipate potential risks that the children in their studies may encounter, to minimize such risks, and to make sure that the benefits of the research outweigh the potential harm.  First ask the parent, if parents agree upon, they start experiment, but if the children say no, experiment will stop immediately, children has the right to say no. Chapter 2 Prenatal Development and the Newborn Period Overview  I. Prenatal Development  II. The Newborn Infant I. Prenatal Development A. Conception B. Developmental Processes C. Early Development D. Fetal Behavior E. Fetal Experience F. Fetal Learning G. Hazards to Prenatal Development 6 A Conception  Results from the union of two gametes, the egg and the sperm  Gametes are produced through a specialized cell division, which results in each gamete’s having only half the genetic material of all other normal cells in the body. Conception Father’s sperm + mother’s ovum Zygote • 46 chromosomes total • 23 from each parent The Zygote  The fertilized egg, or zygote, has a full complement of human genetic material, half from each parent.  Marks the beginning of the three periods of prenatal development  Table 2.1 B. Developmental Processes  Four major developmental processes transform a zygote into an embryo and then into a fetus. 1. Cell division results in the proliferation of cells. 2. Cell migration is the movement of cells from their point of origin to somewhere else in the embryo. 3. Cell differentiation transforms the embryo’s unspecialized stem cells into different types of cells.  about 350 different types of cells 4. Apoptosis, genetically programmed cell death, also enables prenatal development. C. Early Development  By the 4 day after conception, the zygote arranges itself into a hollow sphere of cells with a bulge of cells, the inner cell mass, on one side. The inner cell mass eventually forms into the embryo. The outer mass forms the support system of the embryo Twins  Identical twins originate from the splitting in half of the inner cell mass, resulting in the development of genetically identical individuals. 7  Fraternal twins result when two eggs are released into the fallopian tube at the same time and are fertilized by different sperm.  just being carried on at the same time, but different sperm ast different egg  Implantation: by the end of 1 week following fertilization the process in which the zygote embeds itself in the uterine lining and becomes dependent on the mother for substance The Embryo  After implantation, the inner cell mass becomes the embryo and the rest of the cells develop into its support system.  3 different layers forms  Top layer: nervous system, the nails, teeth, inner ear, lens of the eyes and the outer surface of the skin  Middle layer: muscles, bones, the circulatory system, the inner layer of the skin, and outer internal organs  Bottom layer: digestive system, lungs, urinary tracts and glands  The neural tube is a U-shaped groove formed from the top layer of differentiated cells in the embryo. It eventually becomes the brain and the spinal cord. Spina bifida is a congenital disorder in which the skin over the spinal cord if not fully closed, can originate at this point. The Embryo  The support system includes - amniotic sac: a membrane filled with a clear, watery fluid on which the fetus floats  operates as a protective buffer for the developing fetus : providing a even temperature and cushioning against jolting. - Placenta: permits the exchange of materials between the bloodstream of the fetus and that of the mother  semipermeable  vital elements go from the mother’s body to the fetal blood system. Waste products from the fetus cross to mother. - Umbilical cord: the tube that contains the blood vessels that travel from the placenta to the developing organism and back again Protecting the Fetus  The placental membrane is a barrier against some, but not
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