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The Science of Psychology

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Western University
Psychology 1000
Nick Skinner

David Molnar October 4, 2011 Psychology 1000 - Lecture 3 - The Science of 1. Definition of 2. Methods in 3. Descriptive 4. Experimental a. characteristics b. variables c. drawbacks Descriptive methods employ systematic observation Explanatory methods employ systematic _________ Most experiments take place in laboratories. Can also be done outside of the lab in field experiments. Experimental method is a matter of logic NOT location. *Inhibition* Experimental method has two main characteristics - Primary characteristic is Control over the conditions/factors that rise to the behaviors of interest. (Rats raised in dark vs. in visually enriched environment to learn visual discrimination) - Rat is placed on platform that can fling rat onto next platform with two blocks, one with triangle picture on left and circle picture on right, the pit contains cats.The picture with circle contains rat food behind it. Can the rat differentiate between two visual discriminations if raised in darkness or if raised in a visually enriched environment? - Hypothesis: Rat raised in dark would have more difficulty distinguishing which cube contains rat food. Therefore hypothesis would be rats raised in visually enriched environment would have less difficulty distinguishing between both cubes. - Have they learned a visual discrimination or have the simply learned a position preference? To correct this: Change the positions of the pictures so that the circle is on the left and triangle is now on the right. - External motivator: Would the rats learn to run the maze faster if the amount of food at the end was larger? - Internal motivator: Start with homogeneous rats of different groups, one group of rats has not eaten in two hours and the others have not eaten in two days, two weeks, two months. would the hungrier rats run the maze faster than the ones that has eaten sooner. David Molnar October 4, 2011 Ope
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