[PSYC 51A] - Midterm Exam Guide - Ultimate 19 pages long Study Guide!

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7 Feb 2017
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Brandeis
PSYC 51A
MIDTERM EXAM
STUDY GUIDE
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Designing Research: Variables and Hypotheses
Independent variable (IV)
Cause
Stimulus
Manipulated
Factor researchers control or manipulate in order to determine the effect on behavior
Minimum of two levels
Treatment (experimental) condition
Control condition
Example IV: Aggressive TV program watched children group (experimental condition) vs
Documentary TV program watched children group (control condition)
“Circumstances” selected/manipulated by experimenter - think “independent of
subjects’ other behaviors”
Select
Experimenter “selects” subjects in these circumstances (assign subject to
different groups)
2nd vs 4th graders, male vs female, college vs no college
Manipulated
Experimenter “creates” these circumstances for the subject
Video condition in IPT - Verbal + Non-verbal transcript condition in
IPT - Verbal only
Expected to cause some change in behavior
High motivation → better learning?
More violent films → more aggressive behavior
Female more polite than males?
Gender is a cause
Dependent variable (DV)
Effect
Response
Measured
“Measured behaviors,” the outcome - think “this depends on what the subject does in
the IV”
Expected to be affected by the IV; the behavior change that is measured by the
experimenter
# of words learned (affected by how motivated you are)
How polite you are (depends on gender)
Nail Biting (caused by how anxious you feel)
Constructs (complex psychological concept)
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Many psychological constructs
Examples: aggression, depression, internalizing/externalizing behaviors,
emotion, intelligence, memory, personality, stress, well-being
Operational definition
Specific procedure used to produce and measure a construct
Allow clear communication among scientists
Concepts should be clearly defined and measured
(Independent variable) causes a change in (dependent variable) and it isn’t possible that
(dependent variable) could cause a change in (dependent variable).
Cause and effect
Fixed:
If inborn traits → cause (gender)
If biological traits → cause (aging, hormone, disease)
If historical → cause (parents’ educational level)
If changeable → effect (behavior seen as effect, because can change over time
and space)
Arbitrary:
Preferences → either (can cause behavior, or can develop from behavior)
Personality traits → either (can cause other behaviors, or arise from behaviors)
Co-occurrence → either (go together, not sure how)
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