Principles of Behaviour 9/12/2011 6:33:00 AM
Scientific Psychology involves:
Scientific Psychology is how we do our stuff rather than what we do. 9/12/2011 6:33:00 AM
o John Edwards turned grief into cash
o Pan and Teller began as great magicians with unbelievable illusions and at the end,
they would show to the people how they did their illusions. How you did the tricks
were never as entertaining as the illusions.
o James Randi (www.randi.org) magician. Professional debunker.
*course link: watch YouTube video (link on site)
Book: The Secret
Psychic telephone lines
The plural of Anecdote is not Evidence
Is the view states in a way that can be tested?
Is there any evidence that can falsify the view?
What sort of evidence could lead to rejection of the belief?
If the trustful answer to these Questions is No and None, then whatever you are
dealing with is NOT science.
Epistemology: the study of knowledge. Asks questions like: How to we know? How do we
evaluate evidence? Astrology & Chapter 2 9/12/2011 6:33:00 AM
Gullibility Kills believing things easily. You can be persuaded by anyone, especially if you
think they are a figure of authority. Buy into things very easily.
How to Research
1. Descriptive Methods
a. Surveys/ questionnaires problems with these because it is not the best way
to get an honest answer. When you just ask people you can always gather
data but people lie and do not always answer honestly because they may be
embarrassed about questions or may not want to be truthful. This makes the
researcher vulnerable that the information given may be sanitized before
given to the researcher. Another problem is that sometimes the questions are
not good enough to gather proper data. The sample group must also be
random in order to generalize a bigger population (anyone has an equal
chance of being selected).
b. Observational/ field studies
o Problems: 1. Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle: says to you that you cant
observe something without changing it, 2. Observers Bias: you the
observer went into this with a bias maybe a hypothesis that you want to
confirm, so when you go to observe, your cognitive software will search
only for evidence for what you already believe. If something tells you
otherwise, and goes against your prediction, it will not record in your
memory and you will forget about it, 3. Reliability of Sample
2. Correlational studies basically say that Im interested in the relationship
between two variables/ two things in the universe, for example, height and weight. A
tool called correlation coefficient expresses the relationship and direction.
+1.00 Perfect positive correlation,
+0.68 Strong positive correlation,
+0.32 Weak positive correlation,
0.00 No correlation,
-0.32 Weak negative correlation,
-0.68 strong negative correlation, -1.00 Perfect negative correlation.
a. Prediction vs. explanation -
3. Experimental studies
a. Group comparisons
1. independent variables
2. dependent variables
3. control groups
4. statistical inference to evaluate results
b. Within- subject designs
Theory: because of sex differences in Natural Selection, there is now a difference
in the intelligence of Women and Men (or Women are smarter than Men).
Hypothesis: Women will perform better than men on an IQ test
Experiment: give men and women an IQ test
Null Hypothesis: there will be NO difference in the results of men and women.
(you hope to reject the null hypothesis).
Data analysis: compare the actual scores of men and women and see if the
difference between them is large enough to allow you to reject the Null
If you can, your results support the original Hypothesis, which in turn adds
support to the Theory from which it was derived.