Chapter 2 notes from textbook

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1 Dec 2010
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Psych Notes Ch. 2
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
- Angelo Mosso began studying relationship b/w mind and brain by examining how mental
activity affects flow of blood to brain Æ assumed brain was responsible for thoughts, feelings,
emotions, then mental activity should affect how brain functions
- Methods of Psychological Science:
o Formulate hypothesis
o Design study t plan an experiment with a control group
o Collect data -
o Analyze data t use statistical tech. to assess whether results are genuine or chance
o Disseminate results t report on findings in research journal or conference
- Scientific inquiry: what happens, when it happens, what causes it to happen, why it happens
- Empirical questions: questions that can be answered by observing and measuring the world
around us
o Reflects a dynamic interaction b/w 3 essential elements:
Theory tidea/model of how smthing in the world works
Hypothesis t what should be observed if theory is correct
Research t systematic and careful collecting of data to examine or test
TYPES OF STUDIES IN PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH
- Experimental, correlational, descriptive
o Operational definitions: [to define variables in precise ways] quantify the variables in
order to measure them
- Data collection methods of psych
o Observation, describe, tally
o Ask for info about thoughts, feelings, preferences w surveys, interviews, self-reports..etc
o Measure how quickly and accurately ppl respond to stimulus
o Measure electrical activity and blood flow in brain
o Use animal models in which genes, neurochemicals, brain structures are altered to study
effects on behavior
HOW ARE DATA ANALYZED AND EVALUATED?
- Validity: whether data addresses question; valid data provides clear and unambiguous info from
which to evaluate theory or hypothesis
- Reliability: stability n consistency of a measure over time; if reliable, data collected will not vary
becuz of changes over time in the measurement device
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