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01:830:271- Midterm Exam Guide - Comprehensive Notes for the exam ( 29 pages long!)


Department
Psychology
Course Code
01:830:271
Professor
L.Dickson
Study Guide
Midterm

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Rutgers
01:830:271
MIDTERM EXAM
STUDY GUIDE

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LECTURE TWO THEORIES
Theories
Describe to explain behavior, state of affairs, language.
Explain give an explanation for the description; how/why things become to be a
certain why.
Predict make predictions about behavior based on theory.
Guide Research a good theory will create good predictions, leading to good research
Give Meaning understand the research; why it may be that the research presented
such results.
Theories
Empirically Sound theory must be logically sound; it cannot be contradictory to current
scientific findings.
Testable worded in such a way that it can be tested or have research done on the
theory. If research supports it, it is more empirically sound.
Falsifiable must be able to be tested in a way that the data may end up being
contradictory. Either supports or contradicts the theory presented.
o Example: Sigmund Freud’s theory is not falsifiable because there’s no research that
isn’t correct; “we dream to fulfill wishes” – but more than half of our dreams are
negative. His theory also says that he dreams negatively because people mask
their real dreams. Therefore, his theory is not falsifiable.
Developmental Theories
Describe and explain the changes that occur through development in life. How the
behavior of an organism changes over time. Will describe the relationship change in
between times personality changes.
3 Questions:
o What does developmental change look like? (Describe)
Continuous development as being cumulative, smooth, no major changes.
Example: how quickly a child can move across a room. As age increases, the
quicker a child can move. Quantitative changes.
Discontinuous different stages along development; these stages are different.
Example: infants crawl, then walk.
o What causes it? (Explain)
Nature emphasizing biology, genetics are the reason for the way people act/a
person’s personality.
Nurture emphasizing environment/social influences. Related to experiences
with the world that cause future behavior.
Cannot measure one without the other, both are intertwined.
o When is it possible? (When in life-span)
Early you develop throughout your early years and it will stay the same and
afterwards you just become used to it. (Freud)
Lifespan developmental change occurs throughout life. (Erickson)
Stability vs. Change Early vs. Lifespan
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LECTURE THREE DEVELOPMENTAL RESEARCH
Three Basic Designs
1. Cross Sectional
Take infants of each age and compare how they can complete an activity
Pros quick to develop research, doesn’t cost much,
Cons not developmental design because you’re collecting information from each
child once; there is no change over time since you receive the information at one
time in each infant. You’re only getting an average of what tasks the infants can
complete at each age, but not seeing the development in between ages because
there is no retesting of the same infant as they grow.
Cohort Effects A group of individuals of the same age and historical experiences.
o You cannot conclude that children age 4 can complete a task better than children
age 3 because of the year gap in between them.
This is because there may have been an experience in the age 4 group that
influenced them to complete a task better.
The data you receive may be influenced by these effects. It makes results
difficult to conclude from.
o If 20 year olds can type 300 characters in a minute and 50 year olds can type 75
characters in a minute you cannot conclude that a 20-year-old will not be able
to type 300 characters when they are 50 years old.
There is no developmental change; no single person was tested over the 30
years to see if they type the same characters over time or not.
2. Longitudinal
Taking multiple measurements over the change of time. Observe the same 3 year
olds when they turn 3.5 years and 4 year olds, etc.
Pros this is developmental design because you can see the change over time. Find
out if kids are early or late bloomers; or average.
Cons takes time to analyze data, costs are more expensive because of the time it
takes to collect data. Kids are doing the same test, which can mean that the kids are
completing a task faster because they had practice.
Selective Attrition people drop out of research study.
o You start off with more participants than you end up with. Recruit 120 if you need
100 results because people end up leaving the research.
o Individuals who drop out may have had a different result that may be meaningful
that may have caused them to drop out.
Data is not “randomized” or full of all kinds of ethnic kids, so the data results
cannot be applied to all kids when you reach a conclusion.
Kids that are living in underclass socioeconomics are more likely to drop out.
Kids that are sick or likely to be hospitalized are more likely to drop out
because of inconvenience.
o Kids living in lower class status housings are less likely to have experience with
the certain task being tested vs. the kids who live in upper class households that
are more likely to have access to toys.
3. Sequential (Cross-Sequential)
A combination of cross-sectional and longitudinal
Start off with multiple groups of cohorts, you test those individuals repeatedly over
time.
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