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Scientific Methods in Psychology 1.docx

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McMaster University
Joe Kim

Research Methods in Psychology 1 Unit 1: Intro to Scientific Research Scientific Method: (reduces bias in lab and experiments) -helps to perceive the world around you and answer problems with data and accuracy  Theories: general set of idea about the way world works and guides to the creation of hypothesis  Hypothesis: specific prediction about relationship between variables in the theory  Research Method: test hypothesis; experiments = collect data - scientists analyze the data for relationship revealed in research and report findings by making formal presentations at scientific meetings to revive theories to account for new information and to maintain scholarly, accurate info Paradigm Shift: dramatic change in our way of thinking ie Copernicus idea that earth was center of universe Unit 2: Conducting an Experiment Eric's Theory: Test performance can be affected by external factors Eric's Hypothesis: Student with energy drink do better than without Anecdotal Evidence: evidence gathered from others or self experience Testing Hypothesis:  Single experience might not be representative  Personal experience might not represent others  Cannot be sure that result is due to energy drinks alone Experiment: Scientific tool used to measure the effect of one variable on another Independent Variable: Variable manipulated by scientists (amount enzyme present) Dependent Variable: variable being observed b the scientist (amount of cell growth) Eric's Experiments Flaws:  not proper measurement of effects of energy drink  needs o manipulate independent variable while measuring results on dependent variable  he must compare exams written while taking drink to not taking drink Unit 3: Control Groups - Eric will take the test with drink and his friend will take it without; he is manipulating the independent variable of energy drink consumption while measuring effects on the dependent variable of test performance Experimental Group: receive manipulation of the independent variable, while control group will not - People in experimental or control group should be similar to minimize differences Within- subject Design: manipulating the independent variable within each participant to minimize the effect of external variables on the dependent measure - Eric would test by taking test with taken the energy drink before and some without and than seeing the results will minimize the differences on the dependent subject ( he is his own control group) - Problem with the design is that it can be time consuming and costly Research Methods in Psychology 1 Practice Effect: improved performance over the course of an experiment due to becoming more experience Between Subjects Design: one group acts as the control group (want the people in between subject design to be similar because it reduces differences) Confounding Variable: variable other than the independent variable that has an effect on the results (confound our ability to determine that differences in the dependent variable were caused exclusively by our manipulation): variables that influence results even if they are not variables being studied Unit 4: Sampling - Eric uses the criteria of female, Dutch, with high school average of 93% ( hard to find all participants like this) - Er
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