Psychology 201W w/Jamal Mansour 09/06/2012
Sept. 6, 2012
Psych 201W Intro to Research methods in Psychology
Call her Dr. Mansour or Jamal
Email: [email protected]
(inclue psych 201 in subject line)
Phone: 228 782 9082 (don’t text her)
During office hours RCB 8307 Thurs 12:00 to 1:00 pm.
Only contact if…
You will be unable to attend an exam
Unresolved concern with TA
Don’t have access to WEbct
You want to discuess some aspect of the class
Expect a response withing 4896 hours (24 days).
Lecture notes, lecture recordings
Supplimentay materials (practice questions, further readings, student learning resources, etc.)
Post Questions about course content
Digital versions of assignments
All important course announcements posted there… expected to read these regularly. Lectures are
Login as soon as you can.
TA Foster Ranney. [email protected]
O/H th 4:305:30, F 2:303:30 RCB 5221.
Expect a response withing 4896 hours. Do not email again about same issue until 96 hours has passed.
Ask them first on webct discussion board for course content. Email for personal matters.
Contact them about the course material, how the course is administered, how to do the assignments, exam
details, grading, webct.
Questions asked less than 24 hours before assignment due dates will not be answered. Questions asked
less than 12 hours before and exam may be answered.
Labs start September 14. Friday next week. Not this week. Attendance is required.
Practice with what we learn in lecture
Time to work on research project in group
Hi Dr. Mansour
Yada yada yada
Be polite and clear.
Overall learning objectives
Ability to critically evaluate the validity of the results of research and conclusions drawn from research
Be able to design and conduct simple research projects given a research question … see notes.
Exams based on textbook.
Exams (midterm and final) 44%
Midterm Thursday Oct. 18 2:304:20 here
Final Thurs Dec 13
Lab assignments 10%
Need a paper copy and a digital copy. (webct and box by her office RCB 8307)
1 Oct 4 summarize and critique a research article 5%
2 Nov. 1 Update critique and respond to TA feedback 5%
Research Project 40%
Due noon on the last day of classes. Paper and online copies.
Project involves designing a study, collecting data, basic analyses, writing up the motivation (lit review),
methods and results of project
Research Participation 6%
See site on webct.
Final grades are scaled Letter grades assigned after all components of the course completed
Final grade will be determined by overall position in the final rank ordering of students.
Be careful of patchwriting. Read a sentence, look away and paraphrase it. Do it twice. What are we saying
about a subject.
Laptops in the back 3 rows. Participate!
1.1 Explain reasons for understanding research methods
1.2 Describe the scientific approach to learning about behavior, and contrast it with pseudoscientific
Objectives are on the first page of each chapter.
Research methods are important for figuring out if we can trust the results we find.
Horoscopes are so vague that they aren’t very reliable.
Why include the pet horoscope? They can be related to completely irrelevant things. When you look for
particular information, you only read your one and then try to make it fit. Opposite in science. Try to prove
Research methods help us evaluate information.
Aid in public policy
Program development and evaluation.
Horoscopes are vague statements and you can’t test their accuracy. Need testable and specific statements
to gain knowledge.
What is the scientific approach?
Observe in a structured, systematic way (empiricism)
Try to replicate and understand findings.
Share your findings so there is open exchange and competition of ideas.
Peer Review of findings
Requires scientific skepticism
Ideas must be evaluated on the basis of careful logic and results from scientific investigation
Requires falsifiable ideas
Ideas that can be refuted or supported using empirical data (i.e., observation)
Sept. 13, 2012
Webct resources Activities in class are not on webct. Lectures recorded and on webct. Time table for
lectures and labs.
Reminder about dates
Assignment 1: Oct 4 (noon)
Research Project Outline- Oct 12-18
Midterm- Oct 18
Assignments 2- Nov. 1
Pseudoscience (pg 7): the appearance of credibility without credibility. Something that
looks like science but isn’t based on the scientific method. Maybe can gain knowledge
Many ways to gain knowledge. How do we categorize this?
Talk to an authority. Experts aren’t always the best source of information. Is this person
an authority in this field? Is their judgment reliable? Are they being paid? Would we trust
our parents to program our ipods? Have to check that an authority is appropriate.
Intuition. If you had to choose between jar A (1 red, 10 total) or jar B (8 red, 100 total). A
is better, because you have a higher probability of getting the red jelly bean. We really
can’t always rely on intuition. Even trying to detect if someone is lying. We might have a
4% greater than chance ability of predicting it correctly.
Logic. As long as logic is not flawed, can come up with the right answer. 3 boxes labeled
incorrectly. Which box could you look at to figure out what is in all 3? A. Apples, B.
Oranges. C. Apples and Oranges. C because then apples would have to be oranges
and B would be both. Can use faulty logic to confuse people. Correlation of two things
but assuming wrong cause. Need scientific method to show cause and effect.
What is the scientific approach?
Observe in a structured, systematic way (empiricism)
Try to replicate and understand findings
Share your findings so that there is open exchange and competition of ideas.
Peer review of findings. Ensures research is of good quality and to stimulate new
research. Research is as solid and credible as possible.
Need scientific skepticism and falsifiable ideas. Specific goals of science:
What do people do when they experience a terrible tragedy?
Want to predict the mental health of our staff. Ask them to fill out a questionnaire.
Measure physical health, past history of mental health issues, etc.
What causes people to stop smoking? Can implement a program to help them. What
causes people to perform better academically?
3 things we look for
covariation of cause and effect
eliminate alternative explanations.
Why are people behaving this way? What sorts of things are involved?
Reading club: what about joining a reading group would help girls improve their IQ
See ppt for further details.
The scientific method
What is it that you want to find out? Why do blonds have more fun? Who, what,
A tentative statement about the relationship between two or more variables
It is a prediction of the answer to the question… see ppt. Hypothesis or research q: “A staged crime paradigm was used to evaluate the costs and
benefits of “fair” lineups.” It is a research question.
Discuss how a hypothesis differs from a research question and a theory…. This differs
from our text.
Hypothesis doesn’t have to give you a direction. Prediction is directional (people who do
not smoke will be healthier than those who do).
Theories take information that we learn from research and organize the data we already
have. Theories identify where there are holes in research. May need stronger support.
Which is the theory and the hypothesis
People look outside themselves for hot to evaluate their attitudes and opinions. Theory
People’s tendency to compaie themselves to specific other people will decrease as the
differences in theory opinions or abilities become great.
Theories are generally more general and hypotheses are more specific.
Sept. 20, 2012: Research Ethics
Objectives on slides. Emphasis on 1,2,3,4,6 during lecture.
Ethics board reviewer responsible to asses the situation. They need to have a good sense of what is
happening in order to make that decision. Showing a video, need to provide information about how to get
counseling if offensive.
How we achieve goals… see ppt.
Video: Captain America▯ scene where skinny captain America jumps on a grenade to protect his other
army buddies. Operation rebirth experiment. Gets operation, makes him strong. Drastic human
experimentation. Video▯ experiment scene. Was this ethical? Was there informed consent? Did the cost
justify the results?
Concern for welfare (of the participant):
Is the potential benefit to society… ppt.
In order to get baseline data for an experimental study on selfinjurious behavior in autistic children,
participants were observed without intervention unless the child was engaging in behavior that would cause
Is this okay? Yes: Can’t study without actual autistic children. Not bringing them harm, they behave like this anyways.
No: shouldn’t let children come to harm. Inaction not appropriate. Do parents normally stop them. How do
they judge permanent injury to children? Will they step in on time?
Until behavior is observed, you can’t really plan specific intervention.
Is the participant able to give consent. Kids can give assent but guardians give consent.
How much punishment is appropriate? How much selfharm is appropriate?
Informed consent: What if your doctor asked you to participate in acne experiment. Didn’t tell you that mice
had liver failure after year of treatment. Would you give consent to this?
What if liver failure only happens in 1% of the mice?
What if there are multiple drugs being used?
What if after a year there is improvement with one of the drugs but not the other? What if you are taking the
other drug? What if they didn’t offer the drug to you.
Justice: the benefits and burdens of research are allocated as fairly as possible to all those involved. Is
there a group of people being discluded?
At one time in history there were no guidelines. After WW2 and the nurberg trials. Tried for crimes against
humanity. First ethical guidelines for what happens in research.
Video: 19301972 “The Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment on Black men”
Nonstandard case. Media brought this to an end. Denied the cure when discovered. No benefit for the
participants for staying in the study (already knew how to treat with penecillan).
No informed consent… manipulated. Told they were getting treatment when they weren’t. promised $1000
but used as blackmail.
Risk was not allocated fairly. Poor farmers were in the syphilis group. No Justice. Poor black farmers got the
bulk of the harm.
Didn’t receive any benefits. Should have received or been informed about the cure. Actually prevented from
receiving the cure. Would lose the free health care they were receiving.
There was risk also for the wives and children of the participants. Interaction and contraction.
Was initially a government program.
A researcher recruits poor minorities to participate in a risky experiment?
A) concern for welfare (I chose) L Not risk that is a problem, can be justified and properly monitored.
B) respect for persons W uld not be the case that just because they are in a poor minority, doesn’t mean it
isn’t informed consent. C) Justice (actually) J Reason: Related to carrying the burdens and benefits. Burden allocated to a poor
A researcher tricks people into participating by suggesting that they might win a contest?
A) Concern for welfare
B) Respect for persons (I chose) J YAY! Did not give informed consent!
Designing an ethical study.
Informed consent, debrief, as low risk as possible, allow the subjects to withdraw at any time, protect their
Obtain informed consent
Some populations are incapable of informed consent (children, special needs, elderly, language barrier,
Coercion (being forced to do something, risk if you don’t participate. Going to lose out on something, or
something bad will happen if you don’t do it. What % of mark based on participation? This is coercion, but
there is another option so this is not really the case. The benefit we get is seeing how research takes place,
their design, we get to help be a part of the research… learn more about psychology)
Withholding information and deception (Internal validity of the study can’t be threatened by telling exactly
what the study is about. People resistant if they know what is happening, they are aware that you are trying
to affect their choice preference… want to help or not help… not testing what you want to test.
What issues related to informed consent arise here? see ppt. 3 examples.
Stressful ethics situation. Children can’t really get informed parental consent… risk for the children to
participate. Blanket approval. Gets individual children assent. Did they understand what was happening?
Was there a language barrier? Do they know words besides “yes”? They need someone acting in the
interest of the children present. Are they making sure the children’s rights upheld? How old are they? Are
they just old enough to talk? Not close to informed consent! 69, 1316 probably okay. Telling traumatizing
stories, they need to be given an opportunity to get counseling after… this would need to be clear before
hand. Should have someone to help the children if they become distressed. Might be suffering from PTSD
and cannot give informed consent.
Which of these concerns characterized the Tuskegee Experiment?
A) some populations incapable of informed consent (the participants were illiterate but not incapable of
informed consent. Might have been at a late stage of the disease and be unable to)
B) Coercion ($1000 withheld if they didn’t finish the experiment, healthcare taken away)
C) Withholding information and deception (told they were being treated when they weren’t. Weren’t told
about the existence of penicillin. They were not debriefed about the research)
Allow subjects to withdraw Data confidential
Reveal true purpose
Explain why was it necessary
Has to do with the concern for the person’s autonomy. Respect for the people. Telling them the truth.
Milgrim study: need to tell the people that the man was okay and hadn’t actually been shocked.
Reduce stress created by manipulations in study
In the Milgrim study had to let the people know they hadn’t actually hurt the confederate. Bring the stress of
the research project down.
Another concern about Dr. Wainry’s study. Kids d