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Chapter 2

Chapter 2 Notes

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University of Toronto Scarborough

CHAPTER 2 NOTES The goal of psychology as a science is the explanation of behaviour. The vast majority of psychologists believe that behaviour, like other natural phenomena, can be studied objectively. The scientific method permits us to discover the nature and causes of behaviour. The Scientific Method In Psychology The scientific method consists a set of rules that dictate the general procedure a scientist must follow in his or her research. Rules were originally devised by philosophers who were attempting to determine how we could understand reality. Three major types of scientific research: Naturalistic observation and clinical observation Correlational studies Experiments Naturalistic observation: the observation of people or animals in their natural environment. Clinical observation: observation of the behaviour of people who are undergoing diagnosis or treatment. The two methods above are the least formal and are constrained by the fewest rules. Naturalistic observations provide the foundations of the biological social sciences. Maria Montessori formed many of her ideas about child development by watching children in a classroom. And Paul Broca suggested that language was located in a specific region of the brain after treating a man who had lost his ability to speak. Correlational studies: observation in nature but involves more formal measurement. Researchers examine the relations of these measurements in an attempt to explain the observed behaviours. Experiments: go beyond a mere measurement. A study in which the researcher changes the value of an independent variable and observes whether this manipulation affects the value of a dependent variable. Only experiments can confirm the existence of cause- and-effect relations among variables. The three classes of research often occur in progressive sequence, and provide increasingly more compelling evidence. 5 Steps of the scientific method that apply to experiments www.notesolution.com
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