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Chapter 1

PSYB01 Notes Chap. 1,2,4,5,6,7,8.doc

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Anna Nagy

PSYB01 Chapter 1 - Researching for marketing research, mental health individuals use it to assign clients to particular facilities, medication, and testing procedures - Scientific research is prominent in public policy decisions (banning school segregation in school … white vs. black dolls) o Behavioural research on human development for juvenile court (banning of the death crime, proof that cognitive knowledge for juvenile was not as developed as adults) o Research good for assessing effectiveness of programs The Scientific Approach - Scientific research is successful in answering questions about human behaviour o Many people use to rely on intuition and authority to explain behaviour  Intuition: accept unquestionably what your own personal judgement tells you/what others tell you • Involves finding explanations for own behaviour/ intriguing situations • Cognitive and motivational biases affect one’s perception  cause =/= effect • Illusionary correlation  two situations happen closely together, :. Causal?  Authority: people of higher standing should be more respected, thus they only speak truth • Statements may not be true - Scientific Research: o Intuition and authority can give sources of ideas for behaviour. o Scientific Skepticism: scientist must evaluate ideas on the basis of careful logic and results from scientific investigations o Fundamental characteristic of the scientific method is empiricism —the idea that knowledge is based on observations.  Data are collected that form the basis of conclusions about the nature of the world. • Data = knowledge of observations that can support theories  Scientist must accurately report observations, other scientists can replicate/extend research  Research can be doubted if new research proves otherwise • Falsifiability: if an idea is falsified, it advances sciences  spur development of new and better ideas  Peer reviewed: Scientific evidence is evaluated by multiple people of the same field to ensure soundness of research o Provides an objective set of rules for gathering, evaluating, and reporting information o BE AWARE of pseudoscience: “fake” science in which seemingly scientific terms and demonstrations are used to substantiate claims that have no basis in scientific research. ● Hypotheses generated are typically not testable. ● If scientific tests are reported, methodology is not scientific and validity of data is questionable. ● Supportive evidence tends to be anecdotal or to rely heavily on authorities that are so called experts in the area of interest. Genuine scientific references are not cited. ● Claims ignore conflicting evidence. ● Claims are stated in scientific-sounding terminology and ideas. ● Claims tend to be vague, rationalize strongly held beliefs, and appeal to preconceived ideas. ● Claims are never revised. - Goals of Behavioural Sciences o Describe behaviour  Careful observations: especially events that seem systematically related to one another  Do men find women in red more attractive than women in dark colours?) o Predict behaviour  See regularity in systematically related events = predictions  anticipating events  Ability to predict = make better decisions  E.g. Learn through behavioural science how to maintain long relations – use in life o To determine the causes of behaviour  Correlation =/= cause  3 Types of Evidence to Identify Causes in Behaviour • Temporal Precedence: temporal order of events, cause precedes effect • Covariation of Cause and Effect: cause is present, effect present, no cause = no effect • Elimination of Alternative Explanations: no other causal variable should be responsible for the observed effect o To understand or explain behaviour  Explain the events that occurred  Seeks to understand WHY the behaviour occurs  Further research is necessary to shed light on possible explanations of what has been observed - Ambiguity of science and the need to discard causal explanations when new evidence is gathered - Basic Research o Tries to answer fundamental questions about human behaviour  cognition, emotion. Motivation, learning, personality development, neuropsychology, social behaviour - Applied Research o Address issues in which there are practical problems and potential solutions  E.g. Asian-American college students reported higher levels of depression than Caucasian students. The results have implications for campus mental health programs.  Program evaluation: which assesses the social reforms (program success) and innovations that occur in government, education, the criminal justice system, industry, health care, and mental health institutions - Progress in science is dependent on the synergy between Basic and Applied Research - Applied Research ---- guided by -----> Basic Research - One can never predict the applications of Basic Research, Applied Research provides explanations based on Basic Research to explain social context Chapter 2 - Hypothesis: a tentative idea/question that is waiting to be supported/refuted through evidence o After, must gather evidence and evaluate to see if it is consistent with hypothesis o Testable o Specific o Particular population o About a specific relationship - Prediction: predicting the outcome of the experiment o Prediction SUPPORTS the hypothesis (does NOT PROVE a hypothesis) - Subjects/Participants: people who participate in an experiment/research projects o Respondents: people who take part in survey research o Informants: people who help researchers understand the dynamic of a cultural/organizational settings - Five Sources of Ideas: o Common Sense  things we believe are true e.g. opposites attract, can you “spoil a child”  Allows us to go beyond common sense theory of behaviour o Observations of the world around us  observation of personal/social events + curiosity = ideas!  E.g. is it a good idea to store precious items in a “secret place”? NO!  Role of serendipity interesting discoveries come from sheer luck e.g. Classical conditioning o Theories  systematic bodies of ideas about a particular topic  E.g. psychologists  theories about personality, memory, learning  Grounded with actual data from prior research + numerous hypothesis consistent with theory  Well established and can explain many observable facts (not just ideas)  Can be modified  1. Theories ORGANIZE AND EXPLAIN specific facts/descriptions of the behaviour  2. GENERATE NEW IDEAS  notice new aspects of behaviour (a GUIDE) o Past research  familiarizing with body of research on one topic to generate new ideas  Research in literature always sparks subsequent research  To investigate inconsistencies in research results • E.g. addressing methodological flaws (facilitated communication with autistic children) o Practical problems  Applied and evaluation research - Before conducting a research project, one must have extensive knowledge of the previous research on that topic o Journals  results from investigations of researchers o Online scholarly research database: PsycINFO  list of abstracts (for articles) on a particular topic +links  OR, NOT, (*) wildcard asterisk, AND  “review”, “meta-analysis”  SCI or SSCI (social science citation index)  citation information to find “key article” on topic as a gateway to extending search o Literature Reviews  summarizes research in a particular area o PsycARTICLES, PsycBOOKS, Internet Searches (google scholar) - Make sure websites are associated with major education institutions/research association, check credentials of writer, information current (?), do links to other sites lead to valid organizations. - Anatomy of a Journal o (120 words) Abstract  PsycINFO o Introduction  hypothesis, problem being investigated o Method  detailed report of the exact procedures used in study o Results  presents findings o Discussion  researcher speculates on a broader implication of results, propose possible alternate explanations, reasons for support/refute of hypothesis, suggestions for future research on problem Chapter 4 - Validity: “truth” and an accurate representation of information - Variable: event, behaviour, situation, individual characteristics that VARIES o Operational Definition: set of procedures used to measure or manipulated variables (:. Studied empirically) e.g. pain questionnaire  Ensures abstract concepts are discussed with concrete terms  Help researchers communicate their ideas to others (understanding of definitions and terms) - Construct Validity  concerns whether methods of studying variables are accurate o Refers to the adequacy of the operational definition  does it truly reflect the theoretical meaning of variable? - Internal Validity refers to accuracy of conclusions about cause and effect - External Validity  can we generalize findings of a study to another setting/population - Common Research Relationships (change in one value accompanies change in second value): o Positive Linear  increase in one value = increase in second value (e.g. speech rate + attitude change) (monotonic function) ** Positive nonmonotonic function O_O!!! o Negative Linear  increase in one value = decrease in second value (e.g. social loafing  more group members = decrease in group effort/productivity  # of group members + crowd noise per individual) (monotonic function) o Curvilinear  increase in one value = systematic increases and decreases in second value (nonmonotonic function) (e.g. increases in visual complexity +increase liking for the stimulus TO AN EXTENT, then decrease in liking…) o No relationship  unrelated variables vary independently from one another - Strength of relationship = Correlation Coefficient -1=r=1 - Uncertainty = randomness in an event o Random Variability reduced by identifying systematic relationships between variables  50/50 that people like shopping  Reduce random variability and increase predictability by gender (30:70) like shopping • There is still random variability since you still have around 30% to be wrong, but it is reduced from 50% to 30% wrong  Less randomness = stronger relationship between variables - Determining relatedness of Variables o Nonexperimental Method: relationships studied based on observations or measuring the variable of interest, variables observed naturally, asking someone about their behaviour, recording physiological responses, examining public records  Need operational definitions  Allows researchers see covariation/correlation between variables Correlation Method  Does not explain the causal relationship between variables, ONLY correlation • Difficult to predict Direction of Cause and Effect o Some variables , causal patterns operate both directions o E.g. Similarity causes people to like each other  Liking causes people to become more similar • **Third Variable Problem – extraneous variables that may affect the relatedness o In danger of having no direct causal relationship between two variables (Spurious Relationship) o Third variable is an alternative explanation for observed relationship o Reduces validity of study o Evidence of a third variable = Confounding Variable  If 2 variables are confounded, you don’t know which one is operating in a given situation  Results of studies are ambiguous o Experimental Method: direct manipulation and control of variables  Manipulates the first variable of interest to observe/measure the response (second variable) • In NONEXPERIMENTAL METHOD, both variables are measured  Reduces ambiguity in the interpretation of results  Controls extraneous variables from occurring • Everything in the environment is constant EXCEPT for the manipulated variable • Through randomization, influence of extraneous variables are equal in the experimental condition o Assigning participants into groups in a random fashion  Experimental Control: accomplished when all participants are treated equally/identically  Randomization + Experimental Control = eliminates influence of extraneous variables o Independent Variable (Cause/Explanatory) MANIPULATED VARIABLE  x-axis o IV  DV o Dependant Variable (Effect/Response) MEASURED VARIABLE  y-axis - Internal Validity o High internal validity = strong inference can be made that IV caused DV o Temporal Order  IV before DV o Covariation of Cause and Effect (Page 1 of notes) o Eliminated Alternative Explanations - External Validity o E.g. can apology behaviour conducted in Canada be applied to other countries Chapter 5 - Reliability of Measure o The consistency and stability of a measure of behaviour o Measurement must comprise of two components  True Score: real score on variable  Measurement error: minimal error of measurement, when measuring the same subject multiple times  LESS VARIABILITY IN AVERAGE MEASUREMENT = more accurate/reliable  Reliability increased by using multiple measures • Personality and cognitive measures  Calculate stability of measures using Correlation Coefficient  how related 2 variables are o Pearson product-moment Correlation Coefficient: -1=r=+1 o to assess reliability of measures, must need at LEAST 2 scores reliability coefficient - Method to Assessing Reliability o Test-Retest Reliability: measuring the same individual at TWO points in time  reliability = at least 0.80  Correlation may be ARTIFICALLY high  administer 2 different forms of the same test  Only appropriate for variables that stay relatively constant over time (intelligence)  Time may be an issue o Internal Consistency Reliability: assessment of reliability using responses only ONE point in time  Split-Half Consistency – correlation of the total score for first half of test is high with second half (randomly dividing items (psychology questions) into two parts) • Combined measure (more items) more reliable than half of the measure  Cronbach’s Alpha: correlation of each item on the measure with the other items of measure • provides average of all possible split-half reliability coefficients • More items associated with higher reliability  Item-total Correlations: provide information on each individual item • Individual items that don’t correlate with overall score = measuring different variable o Can be eliminated to increase reliability o Interrater Reliability  Raters observe behaviours and make rating/judgement (Degree of Aggression in children)  Extent to which raters agree in their observations  High reliability = similar ratings  Cohen’s Capa - Difference between reliability and accuracy of measure leads us to consider the validity of measure o Construct Validity of Measure  Questions whether the measure that is employed actually measures the construct it is intended to measure • E.g. Operational Definition for “shyness” need to be known to measure shyness variable. Does the measure reflect the measurement of shyness? o Indicators of Construct Validity  Face Validity • Appears to accurately assess the intended variable • Not very sophisticated, subjective, intuitive process  Content Validity • Comparing the content of measure with the universe of content that defines the construct e.g. measure of depression compared with the definition of depression (mood, physiological/cognitive symptoms) RESEARCH-BASED Validity  Predictive Validity: research that uses the measure to predict behaviour on criterion measured in future time • E.g. High LSAT scores = Do better in Law School  Concurrent Validity: research that examines the relationship between the measure and the criterion behaviour at the SAME TIME • E.g. measure two groups of participants (differed predictably) and measure scores at the same time  depression score, people in therapy for depression score higher than people in therapy for anxiety  Convergent Validity: extent to which scores on the measure in question is related to scores of other measures of the same construct or simila
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