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PSYC 102 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Abraham Maslow, Deindividuation, Extraversion And Introversion

Course Code
PSYC 102
David Klonsky
Study Guide

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Chapter 1: Thinking Critically with Psychological Science
What is Psychology?
Psychology: scientific study of behavior and mental processes scientific study of how
people think (cognition), feel (emotion), and act (behavior)
- Describe, Explain, Predict, Control
- Different Levels of Analysis
- Different Methods
Human Reasoning
- Examples where reasoning often goes wrong…
oSuzy has anxiety, scores 8/10 on an anxiety test, participates in 8 weeks of
Anxiety Reduction Mental Reprogramming Therapy”, Scores a 4/10 on
an anxiety test. Did therapy work?
She would’ve taken the test at her highest level of anxiety
We can’t know what causes what without carefully controlled
oActivator” Method of Chiropractic Care
We can’t trust our personal experience as a valid source of
oAfrican Eucalyptus Extract for Chronic Depression
We can’t trust testimonials from people—even honest people, even
from our friend and family, even if they mean well!
Order in Random Events
- Given random data, we look for order and meaningful patterns
- Confirmation Bias
oMother of all Biases- we attend to what we agree with and ignore what we
oEx. Study of attitudes towards capital punishment; study of psychiatrists
making diagnoses
What Comes to Knowing the Truth?
1. We can’t trust our own personal experience
2. We can’t trust the opinions of our friends, relatives, and loved ones
3. We can’t trust the opinions of ‘smart people
Scientific Method
Scientific Method: A self-correcting process for asking questions and observing nature’s
- Our best protection against sloppy thinking and human reasoning
Hallmarks of Scientific Method
- Objective observation and logically necessary conclusions

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oObjective Observation: evaluate something in a way that does not draw
- Parsimonious explanations
oStick with the more simple one until the more complicated one works
- Independent replication
oOne study never proves anything
oCould apply to a limited number of things (gender, location, age, etc)
oWe don’t know anything until something has been replicated
- Skepticism
oDo not fully trust things immediately
- Careful designs
- Falsifiability
oContinue to test theories
- Open-mind
oNeed both skepticism and open-mind (not opposites)
oSusceptible to confirmation bias, therefore need to investigate other
people’s ideas aside from your own
Theory: an explanation that integrates principles and organizes and predicts behavior or
Hypothesis: a testable prediction to enable us to keep, reject, or revise the theory
Operational Definition: the method used to define/measure a variable in a study
- Construct vs. Operational Definition
oConstruct: What is being measured?
oOperational Definition: How are you measuring it?
Replication: repeating the essence of a research study, usually with different participants
in different situations, to see whether the basic findings extends to other participants and
Random Sampling: when each member of a population has an equal chance of inclusion
in a sample
- Also called an “unbiased sample”
Three Basic Types of Scientific Studies
1. Descriptive
2. Correlational
3. Experimental
- Purpose: Careful and accurate description (doesn’t explain behavior, it describes
- Ex. Amount of sleep, depression
-Questionnaires and Interviews (Survey): a technique for ascertaining the self-
reported attitudes or behaviors of a particular group, usually by questioning a
representative, random sampling of the group
oEx. Half of all Americans reported experiencing more happiness and
enjoyment than worry and stress on the previous day
oWording Effects

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Because working is such a delicate matter, critical thinkers will
reflect on how the phrasing of a question might affect people’s
expressed opinions
Ex. “aid to the needy” vs “welfare”
oRandom Sampling
Population may not be represented accurately
-Naturalistic Observation: observing and recording behavior in naturally
occurring situations without trying to manipulate and control the situation
oEx. Observing chimpanzee societies in the jungle, videotaping parent-
child interactions in different cultures, how often we laugh
-Case Studies: an observation technique in which one person is studied in depth in
the hope of revealing universal principles
oEx. “Smokers die younger: 95% of men over 85 are non-smokers”
oDramatic stories and personal experiences command our attention and are
easily remembered
oIndividual cases can suggest fruitful ideas. What’s true of all of us can be
glimpsed in any one of us.
- Purpose: Evaluating Relationships
-Correlation: a measure of the extent to which two factors vary together, and thus
of how well either factor predicts the other
- Ex. Amount of sleep related to depression, aptitude test scores with school success
-Correlation Coefficient: a statistical index of the relationship between two things
(from -1 to +1)
-Scatterplot: graph comprised of point that are generated by values of two
oSlope- depicts direction
oScatter- depicts the strength of the relationship
- Correlation and Causation
oJust because there is a correlation between two things doesn’t mean that
one causes the other.
oAssociation does not prove causation. Correlation indicates the possibility
of a cause-effect relationship but does not prove such.
oEx. The lower peoples self-esteem, the more they are at risk for
depression  low self-esteem doesn’t necessarily cause it.
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