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midterm 1 review

27 Pages

Course Code
PSYC 2360
Naseem Al- Aidroos

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Reasearch Methods- mid 1 9/27/2012 10:14:00 AM CHAP 1- INTRO TO RESEARCH How do we know what we know? 4 ways to learn about the world: o 1) intuition o 2) logic o 3) authority o 4) observation Types of research: Behavioural research o Research designed to study the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours of humans and animals. Psychological research o Research designed to study the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours of humans and animals o Systematic empirical investigations designed to study the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours of humans and animals Empirical - based on observation Systematic - logically consistent Challenges to behavioural research The intuition problem: o Accepting explanations without testing them thoroughly, may lead people to think they know things they do not really know, and accepting as truth, while there are other more possible/likely answers. Hindsight bias The tendency to think we could have predicted something we probably could not have predicted. The common sense problem: o psychology must differentiate between contradicting common sense. Ex. Absence makes the heart grow fonder vs. Out of site out of mind Pseudoscience: o any body of alleged knowledge, methodology, belief, or practice that claims to be scientific but does not follow the scientific method. Ex. phrenology > area of the brain responsible for certain behaviours. Larger the area, you will show more of that behaviour. Doesnt hold up under proper method. o Identifying pseudoscience: Vague exaggerated claims promise the impossible if it sounds too good to be true it probably is Unfalsifiable Ex. avoid risky tests Over-reliance on confirmation Ex. personal experience Goals of behavioural research: Basic research o Answers fundamental questions about psychology. o pure knowledge (knowledge for the sake of knowledge) Applied research o Investigates issues that have implications for everyday life and provides solutions to everyday problems o applying pure knowledge ex. program evalution research conducted to study the effectiveness of methods designed to make positive changes. examples: o how can peer group influence drinking behaviour APPLIED o Can video games increase aggression among children? APPLIED o Can the luminance of a distractor impact how attention is allocated during visual search? BASIC Basic vs Applied o Both are important! Progress in science is dependent on a synergy between basic and applied research. Much applied research is guided by the theories of basic research. Findings obtained in field settings often require modification of existing theories and spur more basic research Research Designs: Specific method used to collect, analyze, and interpret data. 3 types: o 1) Descriptive research designed to answer questions about the current state of affairs ex. surveys, interviews, naturalistic observation. "way of getting a snap-shot of the world as it is at one time" PRO: can capture complexity of everyday behvaiour CON: only tells us about one thing at one time/ o Provides static pictures. Qualitative observing and describing events as they occur & keeps the data in their original form. recording ALL data you see, in original form. room for personal bias. Quantitative Uses more formal measures of behaviour which are designed to be subjected to statistical analysis. focus on numbers of behaviour, not focused on everything. can accumulate knowledge over time & easily comparable. constrains what you observe, and puts limitations on data. o 2) Correlational research measurement of 2+ relevant variables and an assessment of the relationship between/among them. Measures MORE than 1 thing. (2 variables, or 1 over time) PRO: allows for predictions! CON: cant prove causation Variable: Any attribute that can assume different values among different people or across different times or places examples: Number of hours spent studying is correlated with... increases in grades. decreases in number of social connections. Increases in high school GPA are correlated with.. subsequent university GPA. patterns of relationships: linear association between the variables on the scatterplot can be easily approximated with a straight line. Positive & negative Pearson Correlation Coefficient: (r) Strength and direction of relationship between 2 continuous variables. (ex. height & age) -1 +1 o 3) Experimental research active creation/manipulation of a given situation or experience for 2+ groups of individuals. Followed by a measurement of the effect. idependent variable VS. dependent variable (change independent, measure change of dependent) PRO: can show causal relationships. CON: some issues cant be manipulated so cant be studied. Converging operations:
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