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Lecture 2

Psychology 46-322 Lecture 2: Notes on Research Issues

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University of Windsor

Lecture 2 on Research Issues Why do we ignore science?  Experts do not always agree (which expert is more believable?)  The media wants a heading to catch attention from the audience (whoever the audience might be)  Research always contradict itself (not the researchers interpret the data differently but the data itself contradict)  Shifting recommendations  recommendations are always constantly changing  N=1 Problem  people are more likely to believe information that supports their own beliefs ("I don't believe this data because it is contradictive to what I believe") Research Process  Starts with a hypothesis (what will we find?) o Generated based on theory (from someone else)  theoretical based research o Empirically grounded  based on what other people found and adding another piece  Identifying appropriate sample size  Design study (surveys, questionnaires, interviews, etc)  Collecting data  Analyze data  Interpret data (the data doesn’t speak for themselves, we always interpret them) Epidemiology  Tells us how the disorder look, how often it occurs, where it is most likely to occur, risk factors, what predicts resilience, treatments available, what it looks like at what stages of the disease, relations to other disorders  Complications o Current information still doesn’t have clear cut definition of disorders (We don’t always use DSM) o The rates of seeking treatment (many people who have disorders might not seek disorders) o The clear definition of "impairment" Types of Data Collection  Reporting  asking the parents, the child o ex. structured and unstructured interviews o Questionnaires (helpful because usually give a score and seem less personal) o Problems: accuracy (failure to recall memory), recollection bias (we think that something had happen but didn't), distortion (we distort memories so we don’t hurt as much), normative standards to judge (we don't have good insight; beliefs are making our interpretation of data biased)  Psychophysiological data (ex. lie detector, EEG)  we mostly use EEG in child because adult data compared to child is different  Neuroimaging o Structural scans  CT, MRI (are the brain parts in the places they are supposed to be?) o Functional  fMRl, PET (allows us to see if the brain is working properly, looking at blood flow changes, uptake of neurotransmitter, active/non-active parts of the brain)  Problem: it is not diagnostic (no certain pattern with disorders)  Observations o Naturalistic  natural environments (observer's presence disrupts the environment)  Problem: these are intensive, long observation, you may not see the behaviour of interest o Structured  labs; environments that are set-up (usually the parent is given something to do with the child and observe how the child interact with the parent  Problem: the child/parent might behave differently in an unfamiliar environment  Testing o To measure differences; ex. memory problems, language problems o Provides the opportunity to see the participant at work (how they respond to certain things ex. boredom and redirection) Research Design  Experimental (random sample size)  It is difficult to randomly assign children  Quasi-experimental  tells us something about the relationships between factors  Prospective vs. retrospective  both longitudinal o Prospective  we gather a number of kids over time and observe certain characteristics about them (expensive, have to keep
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