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Chapter 2

Psychology chapter 2 notes.doc

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Steve Joordens

Psychology- The study of Behavior Chapter 2 The scientific Method The three types of scientific research include: • Naturalistic observations involve observing people or animals in their natural environments with as little disturbance as possible. Problem: If you act like a tiger they will act differently knowing you are not one of their kind • Correlational Studies are often observational but also involve the measurement and examination of variables that may be related to certain behaviors. Problem: You do not know what is causing the behaviors there are much too many variables • Experiments use active manipulation to get an understanding of how variables effect behavior. This is the BEST type of research Rules of the scientific method: 1)Identify the problem and for a cause-effect hypotheses 2)Design the experiment 3)Perform the experiment 4)Evaluate the hypothesis on the basis of the obtained data 5)Communicate the results Hypothesis Through naturalistic observations we may use the chain mail example to for the hypothesis that sharks truly don’t like electrical conductors. It is not humans that they hate or blood that they like but the metal they are wearing which tends to blind sharks Designing the experiment • A variable is anything that can take up multiple values • The independent variable is the variable which is manipulated by the experimenter (electrical current) • The dependent Variable is the variable that is measured during the experiment as a effect of the changed independent variable (Aggression) • The control group is that group in which nothing is changed. The reason for a group like this is so that when the Experimental group which is changed has a change, it can be compared to the original “normal” group • The operational Definition is defining the variables in a way so that they can be measured well. learning cannot be measured so we must operationally define it to be measured by marks • The validity of an experiment refers to how well a variable was operationally defined. Converging evidence is used when different researches test the same hypothesis with different operational definitions and get the same result, The validity of the experiment is high Internal validity is an experimental result that is only valid on a small group of people • • External Validity is the ability to Generalize the results to a larger population • Confounding variables are those variables that come hand in hand in an experiment and therefore make it hard to distinguish which variable actually caused the effect • Counterbalancing is a method used to avoid confounding variables. The researcher exposes the variables in different orders to two groups so that the effect of each variable can truly be determined Perform the experiment • Reliability is not to be confused with variability. It is the extent to which an experiment is measured and how accurately results are obtained • Inter-rater reliability is used to make sure reliability is high in an experiment and measure the experiment many times for accuracy • Random assignment is used to prevent confounding variables and the
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