PSY 2114 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Fetus, Cell Division, Miscarriage

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7 Feb 2016
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Lecture 2: Research Methods and Biological Foundations, Jan 20th, 2016
Overview
1) Research Methods
2) Genes and the Environment
3) From Conception to Birth
1. Research Methods
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why do we care?
-sometimes results that are opposite to what we originalaly thought
-research should be evaluated critically
Scientific Method
A systematic way of finding the right answers to questions or problems that includes standards
of sampling, procedure, and measures.
often a cycle to move on to next research question
1. Identify a Research Question & 2. Form a Hypothesis
Research Question:
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Lecture 02 Research Methods and Biological Foundations
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Does watching a violent tv show effect childrens level of aggression?
Hypothesis:
Plausible – must make sense
Empirically testable – can there be something to actially confirm/discomfirm
Falsifiable – has to be able to be discomfirmed
3. Choose a Research Design
Independent Variable (IV):
Related to or influences the dependent variable
In experiments, it is the variable that is manipulated.
The IV:
… causes changes in the DV or
… predicts changes in the DV or
… explains changes in the DV
Dependent Variable (DV):
Depends on, is related to, or is influenced by the IV
In experiments, DV is observed after IV is manipulated
Not manipulated
IV of the study is hours spent watching violent show
DV is childs level of aggreassion
Experiments
Experimental Design:
allows inferences about causes and effects to be drawn
involves manipulating variables
typically involves assigning participants randomly to groups – no bias
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an exemple of experimental design for this study is taking all children of one
neigbourhood and have one group watch vilolent tv, the other group watch kid tv shows.
Then measure aggression between kids (verbal, physical etc)
Why can experiments allow us to determine causation?
A well designed experiment controls variables properly so that only one variable is allowing
causastion.
Natural Experiments
Natural Experiment:
empirical study where individuals are exposed to experimental and control conditions
determined by nature or other factors (instead of researchers), resembling random
assignment.
Correlational Designs
Correlational Design:
approach that measures two or more variables without manipulating them and examines
the relationship between them
Correlation coefficient (r)
Measures association between 2 variables
Between -1.00 and 1.00
Which correlation is stronger: -.73 or .59?
Positive and negative association
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Lecture 02 Research Methods and Biological Foundations
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