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Psychology Definitions 2013 Exam.docx

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Psychology Definitions LEVELS OF ANALYSIS Psychology: “psyche” meaning soul, “logos” meaning study Structuralism (Edward Titcher): understanding the structure of consciousness in its basic elements and how they are related Goal: reducing consciousness into its core components such as sensations, feelings, and images Data collected through introspection – experimenter’s trained subjects to observe and report their own experiences Flaw of Introspection: subjects recorded private data (biased) – personal interpretations of what they experiences with no independent verification of the claim Functionalism (William James): consciousness was an important human characteristics that must have an adaptive purpose (function of consciousness over structure) – continuous flow of thought (“stream of consciousness”) – room for emotions, values, and recognition of individual uniqueness, which could not necessarily be captured by test results Public Data: could be directly observed and verified – observers could agree about what actions a person did, but not observe the mental processes that led to a person to produce that behaviour Responses: relative behaviour Stimulus: observable events in the environment Cognitive Psychology: study of our thoughts and mental processes (memory, attention, language, problem solving, and forming categories and concepts– cognitive revolution) Contemporary Perspectives 1. Biological:  Understanding organism function as a product of genes, the brain, nervous and edocrine systems – behaviours are explained through biochemical processes and communication between neurons 2. Developmental:  How behaviours and mental processes change across a lifespan (eyesight declining with age) 3. Evolutionary:  The explanation of adaptive behaviour and mental processes – explains the different sex roles and preferences assumed by men and women as products of evolution 4. Socio-Cultural:  How cross-culture differences have consequences on behaviour and thought RESEARCHMETHODS Basic Rules of Scientific Inquiry: Parsimony – when presented with two equally valid explanations, scientists ted to prefer the simpler of the two Natural Order – when we look at human behavior, we often see the same kinds of behavior occur in widely varied settings and cultures – following the principle of natural order, we assume that this behavior (ex. Smiling) is a reflection of the same underlying mechanism in people all over the world Generalizability – the dictation that we ascribe the same causes to the same effect when we observe phenomena occurring across different situations. The same causes that produce our effects in the lab also produce those effects in everyday life situations over which the scientists control Conservatism – scientists are conservative in the sense that they tend to support the current theory until new facts accumulate to force the theory to be modified or abandoned Empiricism and Objectivity – knowledge should be based on actual observation not just a reason alone Inductive and Deductive Reasoning In Science: Inductive Reasoning – to move from a collection of specific observations (facts) for form an idea of their relationship in a theory I.e. because cats, dogs and cows are all warm-blooded you formulate the 4 legs theory that all four-legged animals are warm blooded (you are assuming) Deductive Reasoning – to test the theory to make specific predictions I.e. if all 4 legged animals are warm blooded then elephants should be warm blooded too, as they are also 4 legged animals even though no elephants were observed when formulated the theory Steps In Scientific Investigation: 1. Theory – (studying an idea) scientists begin by studying the existing collection of information about the world, such as previous work published by other scientists – this information helps them to construct a theory – a general set of ideas of how the world works 2. Hypothesis – (predictions) makes specific prediction about the relationship between variables involved in the theory 3. Research Method – (research methods) must carefully select a research method that is appropriate for the test at hand, most psychologists prefer the experiment 4. Collect Data – (collecting) actually collecting data using one or more of several techniques 5. Analyze Data – (analyze) once the data has been collected, a researcher uses statistical tools to analyze these data to reveal patterns and determine whether the findings support their hypothesis 6. Report Findings – individual scientists and the scientific community as a whole review all findings on a topic to revise existing theories 7. Revise Theories – theories are continually being revised to account for new information Experiment – the procedure of choice used to systematically study a problem in psychology  The researcher manipulates one or more variables under controlled lab conditions and measures the changes that occur in a second variable Construct – a construct is a way of thinking about an abstract concept that is efficient and easily communicated – i.e. the concept of intelligence Independent and Dependent Variables: Variable – anything that is free to take on different values (height, IQ, age, etc.) Constant – a value that is always the same across times and situations (a subject who is male or female) Independent Variable (IV) – variable that the researcher will intentionally manipulate i.e. testing students test scores in warm and cold temperatures (IV is the temperature) Dependent Variable (DV) – measured by the researchers to see if their manipulation of the IV had any effect i.e. the DV would be the test scores (what changes) Experimental and Control Groups:  In an experiment, the researcher deals with two groups of subjects treated differently with the respect to the IV  Subjects in the experimental group receive e a special treatment along the IV, whereas the subjects in the control group do not Extraneous (Confounding) Variable (EV) – variables that the researcher did not manipulate or measure, but could still affect the outcome of the experiment i.e. other factors that could effect test scores other than temperature Descriptive/Correlational Research: Correlational Research – NO manipulation just observing and recording Simple Correlation – a measure of the direction and strength of the relationship between two variables Positive Correlation – means that as the value of one variable increases, the value of the other also increases (the older someone is, the more money they make) Negative Correlation – increasing values on one variable were associated with decreasing values o the other (data would show, the older you got, less money you would make) Zero Correlation – indicating no relationship – would indicate that age and income had no relationship whatsoever  Correlations are measured from -1 to +1  Correlation of -1 shows a p
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