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Lecture

Class 3. Research Methods.docx

5 Pages
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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSY2105
Professor
Caroline Sullivan

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Research Methods The importance of Research  Autism Bruno Bettelheim ‘Refrigerator Mother’ – cold distant mother, kids less likely to develop attachment to their mothers  Consequences  37 families with an autistic child 3 mothers with mental health issues  No comparison with families without an autistic child Importance of Code of Ethics  Lobotomies  “Little Albert”  Milgram Choosing a Research Strategy Research Methods  The specific activities of participants Questionnaires Interviews Observations Etc. Research Design  Overall plan for the study Permits the best test of the research question. Hypothesis A prediction often drawn from a theory. Research can:  Test a prediction of one theory against that of another  Test a prediction of one theory  Start with a research question, if there is no theory Variables Independent  Experimenter changes, or manipulates  Expected to cause changes in another variable Dependent  Experimenter measures, but does not manipulate  Expected to be influenced by the independent variable Avoiding Confounding Variables  Random Assignment Researchers use unbiased procedure to assign participants to treatment conditions Sometimes combined with matching participants on key characteristics Types of Research  Descriptive research consists of conducting observations or interviews and recording responses  Correlational research aims to describe the association between two variables  Experimental research aims to show a causal relationship between one variable and another Descriptive Research: systematic Observation Naturalistic Observation  In the “field” or natural environment where behavior happens Structured Observations  Laboratory situation set up to evoke behavior of interest  All participants have equal chance to display behavior Limitations of Systematic Observation  Observer Influence Participants may react in unnatural ways Can be minimized  Observer Bias Observers record what they expect, rather than what really happens A serious danger Interviews Clinical Interview  Flexible, conversational style  Probes for participant’s point of view Structured Interview  Each participant is asked same questions in same way  May use questionnaires, get answers from groups Limitations of Clinical Interviews  Accurac
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