Textbook Notes (369,072)
Canada (162,367)
Psychology (9,699)
PSYB32H3 (1,174)
Chapter 5

PSYB32 - Chapter 5.docx

5 Pages
81 Views

Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB32H3
Professor
Konstantine Zakzanis

This preview shows pages 1 and half of page 2. Sign up to view the full 5 pages of the document.
Description
Chapter 5 PSYB32 Chapter 5 Research Methods in the Study of Abnormal Behavior Science and Scientific Methods  Science: pursuit of systematized knowledge through reliable observation  Important for scientific observations and explanations to be testable (open tot systematic problems) and reliable (replicable) Testability and Replicability  Scientific approach requires first that propositions and ideas be stated in a clear and precise way o Only then can scientific claims be exposed to systematic probes and tests  All statements, theories and assertions must be testable and subject to disproof  Each observation must be reliable/replicable o Must occur under prescribed circumstances anytime it is repeated o If event cannot be reproduced, legitimacy of original observation will be questioned The Role of Theory  Theory: a set of propositions meant to explain a class of phenomena  Primary goal of science is to advance theories to account for data, often by proposing cause-effect relationships  Theories themselves can guide research by suggesting that certain additional data be collected  Hypothesis: expectation about what should occur if a theory is true o A theory permits the generation of a hypothesis to be tested in research  Generating a theory is most challenging o Scientists look at unobservable states/processes that are inferred from observable data  Theoretical concepts can also summarize already observed relationships  Operationism: proposed that each concept take as its meaning a single observable and measurable operation o A criteria applied in judging legitimacy of a theoretical concept o This causes the loss of generality  Therefore today the theoretical concept can be defined by sets of operations or effects o Concept can thus be linked to several different measurements, each of which taps a different facet of the concept The Research Methods of Abnormal Psychology  All empirical research entails the collection of observable data o Sometimes research is purely descriptive o Most times several events are observed and connections are made between them The Case Study  Case study: The collection of historical and biographical information on a single individual, often including experience in therapy  Comprehensive case study would cover family history and background, medical history, educational background, jobs held, marital history o Also collect details concerning development, adjustment, personality, life course and current situation Providing Detailed Description  Since case studies focus on one person, they provide much more detail than other research methods  Validity of info gathered in a case study is sometimes questionable  Constant comparative method: consists of the identification of relevant units of information, placing the units into categories that emerge from the data and providing organization themes for information  This method has been used to study dissociative identity disorder and trichotillomania The Case Study as Evidence  Case histories are useful when they negative an assumed universal relationship or law o Ex. Depression is caused by stress; if one case study were to disprove this it would allow us to know that this law is not always followed therefore allowing us to venture other causes  Case studies fares less well as evidence in support of a particular theory o Do not provide the means for ruling out alternative hypotheses o Certain factors are not manipulated so a cause and effect cannot directly be made Chapter 5 PSYB32 Generating Hypotheses  Case study plays a unique role in formulating hypotheses  As clinicians study certain patients, they gain experience in understanding and interpreting them o Eventually notice similarities of circumstances and outcomes and formulate important hypotheses from this  Some case studies are so unique they cant exactly be generalized o If an occurrence of these cases start to exist it helps us understand a disorder much better and allows clinicians to venture different possibilities when diagnosing  Hypotheses from case studies can later be studied in greater detail through controlled research Epidemiological Research  Epidemiology: study of frequency and distribution of a disorder in a population  In epidemiological research, data are gathered about the rates of a disorder and its possible correlates in a large sample or population o Gives a general picture of a disorder, how many people it affects, whether it is more common in men than in women and whether its occurrence also varies according to social and cultural forms  Epidemiological research focuses on determining three features of a disorder o Prevalence: the proportion of a population that has the disorder at a given point or period of time o Incidence: the number of newcases of the disorder that occur in some period, usually a year o Risk factors: conditions or variable that, if present, increase the likelihood of developing the disorder  Knowledge of risk factors can give clues to the causes of disorders  Results of epidemiological research may provide hypotheses that can be more thoroughly investigated using other research methods The Correlational Method  Correlational Method: method established whether there is a relationship between or among two or more variables  Variables being studied are measured as they exist in nature o Different from experiment research (variable are manipulated and controlled) Measuring Correlation  First step to determining correlation is to obtain pairs of observations of the variables in question  Then the strength of the relationship between the two sets of observations can be calculated  Correlation coefficient ^: Denoted by r o Value between -1.00 and +1.00 and measures both magnitude and the direction of a relationship o Higher the absolute value of r, the larger or stronger the relationship between the two variables o +1.00 or -1.00 is the highest possible/perfect correlation o r of 0 indicates that the variables are unrelated o Positive r value means it is positively correlated o Negative r value means it is negatively correlated  Plotting a relationship graphically often helps make it clearer o Perfect relationships are in one straight line o The more dispersed the points are, the less correlated the factors are Statistical Significance  Refers to the likelihood that the results of the investigation are due to chance  A statistically significant correlations is one that is not likely to have occurred by chance  In psychological research, a correlation is considered statistically significant if the likelihood or probability that it is a chance finding is 5 or less in 100 o Level of significance is called the .05 level  Commonly written as p=.05 (p stands for probability)  As the size of the correlation coefficient increases, the result is more and more likely to be statistically significant  The greater the number of observations, the smaller r (the correlation) needs to be to reach statistical significance Chapter 5 PSYB32 Applications to Psychopathology  We compare people given one diagnosis with those given another or with people without a psychological diagnosis, the study is correlational  When correlational method is used in research on psychopathology, one of the variables is typically diagnosis  Often investigations are not recognized as correlational (since participants come to a lab for testing) but the logic of such studies is correlational  Classificatory variables: The characteristics that people bring with them to scientific investigations (sex, age, mental status); studied by correlational research and mixed designs o Not manipulated, naturally occurring factors Problems of Causality  Correlational method does not allow determination of cause-effect relationships  Sizeable correlation between tow variables tells us only that they are related or tend to co-vary with each other o But we do not really know which is cause and which is effect or if either variable is actually the cause of the other The directionality problem  A difficulty that arises in the correlational method of research when it is known that tow variables are related but it is unclear which is causing the other o Seen in many correlational studies  Causation does imply correlation but correlation does not imply causation  One way of overcoming this is based on the idea that causes must precede effects o Studies investigating the hypothesized causes of psychopathology would se a me
More Less
Unlock Document

Only pages 1 and half of page 2 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

Unlock Document
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version

Unlock Document

Log In


OR

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


OR

By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.


Submit