Class Notes (837,186)
Canada (510,155)
Psychology (2,075)
PSYCH 352 (13)
Lecture 3

Week 3 - Methods in Cultural Psychology .docx

8 Pages
126 Views
Unlock Document

Department
Psychology
Course
PSYCH 352
Professor
Igor Grossmann
Semester
Winter

Description
Week 3: Methods in Cultural Psychology Overriding Themes - Studying psychological phenomena is challenging in general –much more so when studying it cross-culturally - We have trouble accessing our own psychological states, never mind trying to study someone else’s Whom To Study? - Choosing which cultures to study depends on the research question - Process-oriented approach: If the goal is to see if X (e.g., individualism) shapes Y (e.g., preference for uniqueness), then find two cultures that vary on X - If the goal is to see universality of X (e.g., theory of mind), then find two cultures that are maximally different on many dimensions o Similarities between them suggest high level of universality Issues with Comparing Cultures - Researchers must understand cultural norms and practices of the cultures being studied, especially in relation to the psychological phenomenon in question o If not, researchers risk drawing conclusions based on faulty information and assumptions - Such understanding is accomplishing through use of ethnographies, foreign collaborators, and immersion in culture of interest o Combination of these methods is ideal - Researchers need to watch for methodological equivalence o Methodological equivalence: in cross-cultural research, the concern with making sure participants from different cultures understand the research questions or situations in equivalent ways o I.e., ensure methods are understood in identical ways across cultures o E.g., some cultures may not understand process of completing psychological surveys - May require researchers to use slightly different methods with different cultures (especially drastically different cultures) - Researchers avoid many of these problems by primarily targeting university students in industrialized societies in cross-cultural research o Generalizability: the degree to which research findings about the particular samples studied can be applied to larger or broader populations  Do findings apply to non-student populations in industrialized societies?  What about in subsistence cultures? o Power: the capability of a study to accurately detect an effect to the extent that one exists  A reflection of how well-designed a study is  Since university students in industrialized societies share many similar experiences, cultural effects may become diluted  Such comparisons are conservative and less powerful 1 Issues with Cross-Cultural Surveys Translations - Translation of materials is important in cross-cultural research, but can be problematic o Many psychological terms cannot be directly translated - E.g., Got Milk? (Tienes Leche?) o Wrong translation o Social roles for milk providers o Newest development –orientation towards biculturals - If a bilingual collaborator is available, he/she can decide whether translated materials are appropriate - Another alternative is back-translation o Back-translation: a method of translating research materials form one language to another whereby a translator translates materials from Language A to Language B and then a different translator translates the materials back from Language B to Language A  The original and twice-translated versions in Language A are then compared so that any discrepancies between them can be resolved Response Biases - Psychological surveys are usually done using number scales - Example: 2 - Different cultures have different tendencies or biases when responding to surveys o Moderacy bias: tendency to choose numbers toward midpoint of scale o Extremity bias: tendency to choose numbers toward the ends of the scale o These biases can be controlled for by using forced-choice questions (e.g., Yes/No)  But hard to detect nuances and smaller differences - Another counter-active measure for such biases is standardization –to standardize, average a participant’s score on a measure (usually all questionnaire measures in a set) o Then derive a standardized score (z-score) for each response a participant gives, based on his/her personal average o This creates a standard distribution curve for each participant, with z-score of the average at 0 o Scores > average have + z-score o Scores < average have – z-score - This process forces everyone to have the same average (i.e., 0) and creates the same distribution for everyone’s scores, thus getting rid of moderacy and extremity biases - This does not allow conclusions based on differences in averages between groups/cultures (e.g., Chinese more introverted than Americans) - This does not allow conclusions based on patterns of groups’ responses (e.g., Chinese more introverted than extraverted, opposite for Americans) - Acquiescence: response bias referring to the tendency to agree with most items on a measure o This bias can be neutralized by reverse scoring half of the items  Half of the items is numbered normally, while the other half is numbered such that large numbers actually indicate strong disagreement - Reference group effect: one’s response to questions may depend on the group that one is using for reference o E.g., how does one respond to the item “I am tall”?  Asking somebody is they are tall/thin would thus depend on their reference group  To control for this, questions on measures should be as objective and concrete as possible, which could be achieved by:  Providing specific scenarios as questions  Soliciting quantitative responses (e.g., frequencies of specific behaviour)  Using behavioural and physiological measures (height, BMI) - Deprivation effects: tendency for people (or cultures) to value what they would like, not what they have o E.g., Americans value “humility” more than Chinese, Chinese value “choosing one’s own goals” more than Americans o No clear solution for this bias, except to interpret results with caution 3 Issues with Cross-Cultural Experiments - Experimental designs allow us to draw stronger inferences with our data - Such designs entail the manipulation of an independent variable to determine its effect on a dependent variable o Manipulation = researchers creating two or more levels or conditions of independent variable - Independent variable: in an experiment, the variable or condition that the experimenter manipulates in order to examine its effect on the dependent variable - Dependent variable: in an experiment, the variable or measure affected by manipulation of the independent variable - Alas, culture is not an independent variable that can be manipulated easily, but other variables have been manipulated in cross-cultural studies - Two types of manipulations: o Between-groups manipulations
More Less

Related notes for PSYCH 352

Log In


OR

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


OR

By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.


Submit