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Chapter 4

Chapter 4 Psych.docx

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Psychology 2320A/B
Alvin Segal

Chapter 4 Psych Fundamentals of Research - hypothesis testing o build knowledge systematically o one investigation provides evidence for/against o hypothesis that is supported serves as evidence for theory Selection of Participants - random selection o cannot study entire population, next best o choosing each participant by chance - clinical populations can overrepresent youth who experience more serious symptoms o selection bias: important implications Observation and Measurement - operational definition of behaviour or concept being studied o aggression operationalized as frequency with which children shove o depression operationalized by a score on scale that measures feelings - validity o construct validity  exists if questionnaire gets at what is the underlying concept  whether measure corresponds to construct (concept) underlying attribute o content validity  content of measure corresponds to content of attribute o face validity  whether measure seems appropriate for attribute o concurrent validity  scores on measure correlate with scores on another acceptable measure o predictive validity  scores on measure predict later scores on another acceptable measure - reliable o data = similar or consistent if measurements taken again under similar circumstances - naturalistic observation o directy observing individuals in the “real world” - interobserver reliability o reliability of measurement o determine whether behaviours were coded in consistent way by independent coders  20 categories for parent-child behaviour o generally higher when observation sched is specific and clear o checked by additional observer, coded 1/3 of tapes - observer blindness o no knowledge of family’s status, nor hypotheses being tested o decreased chance that observers would be biased Reliability of research results - assume truth repeats itself given similar circumstances - observed again by others - replication of findings is an important component - truth not reported, original findings = unreliable/inconsistent - clear and concise! Validity of research results - reliability refers to consistency (repeatability), validity refers to correctness (appropriateness) - validity judged in terms of purpose of research and way results are used - internal validity : explanation is judged to be correct - external validity: generalizability, extent that results apply to other populations and situations Basic Research Methods - descriptive : variety of ways, relationship of two or more variables of interest is described - nonexperimental: widely employed, involve sophisticated correlational statistical analysis to study complex relationships - experimental: o randomized: highly esteemed, come closest to establishing cause- effect relationships  require manipulation(A), followed by examination of effects(B)  causal: variation in A is related to variation in B, alternative explanations are unlikely by randomly assigning participants to manipulation o quasi-experimental: similar to random experiments  include manipulation and various controls  participants not randomly assigned to manipulation  reduced confidence of casual explanations Case Studies - descriptive, nonexperimental method - focus on individual - power to illustrate - weakness: reliability and validity, cannot be generalized Correlation Studies - nonexperimental investigations, describe relations between two or more factors o WITHOUT exposing participants to manipulation - Pearson product-moment coefficient, ‘r’ o Always ranges between +1.00 and -1.00  Positive correlation (direct correlation) = high scores on X associated with high scores on Y, or low scores on X related to low scores on Y  Negative correlation (indirect/inverse) = high scores on X related to low scores on Y; low scores on X related to high scores on Y o Coefficient of 0 = no correlation/relationship - Considerable in abnormal psychology - Invaluable when variable of interest cannot be manipulated - Structural modeling Randomized Experiments - “true” experiments, strongest for inferring causal links between variables - independent variable : controlled manipulation, presented to participants who are randomly assigned to different conditions - dependant variable: outcome of manipulation measured, differences among conditions are evaluated - groups treated similarly, group differences can be attributed to independent variable - random assignment of participants to groups make it likely that differences are not caused by initial group disparity but by manipulation - Abecedarian Project  Ramey and Campbell o Independent variable = provision of educational program o Children in treatment began daycare by 3 months of age  Until they reached 54 months o Included lang, motor, social, cognitive components o Control children did not attend day care , however, received similar nutrition supplements, pediatric care and social services o Dependant variable = standardized development tests (twice a year) o Difference = STATISTICALLY SIGNIFICANT  probability that finding is not due to mere chance, ssf would occur by chance only 5 or less times were study repeated 100 times o educational program resulted in benefits o argued study = internally valid, results are due to treatment o individual testers to testing sessions – offset bias o external valididty from study conducted in day care Experiments of Nature - studies examine naturally occurring events and contrast a condition of interest with a condition in a comparison group - condition of interest = not manipulable, no manipulation - institutionalization on children’s development o adverse effect of institutionalization on intellectual development, physical health for orphans - weakness = potential selection bias Traditional Research - issue of generalizability = gap between research and application of knowledge - translational research : two step model/two types of research o TYPE 1: “bench to bedside,” applied to mental health  Basic research to identify problems, etiology, design and testing of interventions to improve well-being  Benefits may not accrue in clinical practice o TYPE 2: “bedside to community”  Broad scale adoption, implemention and evidence based
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