Psychology 3301F/G Chapter Notes - Chapter 4: Statistical Conclusion Validity, Evidence-Based Practice, Duplicate Publication

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Chapter 4: Research Methods
Evidence based practice requires psychologists to be not only sensitive and empathic, but also well
informed about current research relevant to the services they provide
o Effective scientist-practitioner thinks in a scientific manner and applies knowledge derived from
research with care and compassion
Eminence (antithesis of evidence) recommendations are accepted because the person delivering them
is seen as an expert
o Should be skeptical, e.g. tv experts
Cant just rely common sense bc logical inconsistence process info and make decisions
Clinical focus OCD started 1800s, until 1960s seen as untreatable
Common errors in thinking
Faulty Reasoning form argument inacc/ misleading some way
False dilemma fallacy form reducing range options avail to just 2 (usually extreme) options
Golden mean fallacy logical error assuming most valid conclusion reach comp of 2 competing positions
Straw person argument mischaracterizing positon order make look absurd/unpalatable
Affirming the consequence first assume x is cause y, then y observed, conclude x must have caused
Appeal to ignorance mistake form arguing that bc no evidence prove position wrong, position must be
Generating Research hypotheses
Researchers are not immune from potential biasing effects of own beliefs
After developed general research idea, scientists follow a number of steps to ensure that the hypothesis is
properly formulated and tested
1. Systematic research of published research
2. Formalize ideas o they can be tested in scientific manner
Assuming no research has directly tested the idea
3. Consider cultural assumptions
Extent idea may be based on some; that may limit applicability or relevance
4. Ethical issues
5. Draw together results to create study procedures
Bottom line is researchers must ensure that the research methods match the hypothesis to be tested
Ethics in research
Especially important in clinical because of vulnerable state of patients
Psychologists are required to apply the same types of ethical decision making in both research and in
Researchers have an ethical obligation to those involved
Issue of informed consent, provides assurance participant is fully aware of possible benefits and risks
Prior to data collection, must obtain approval for conducting research from institution in which they work
Research ethic boards (REBs) ensure proposed research conforms to Tri-Council Policy statement Ethical
Conduct for research involving humans
APA Ethical Principles for research and publication
Institutional approval
Informed consent for research and recording
Client, patient participants
Dispensing with informed consent
Offering inducements for research participants
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Humane are and use of animals
Reporting research results
Publication credit
Duplicate publication of data
Sharing research data of verification
Research Designs
Research must be seen as cumulative, with each study contributing to the knowledge base of an area
Clinical psych should be informed by research on assessment, prevention and intervention
Found relatively large number of design problems that can undermine the validity of a research study
Gone to great lengths to developed and promote use of classification systems that covers the majority of
potential problems
o Originally conceptualized by Donald Campbell
These potential design problems are classified as representing threats to the internal validity, external and
or statistical conclusion validity
Internal validity = extent to which the interpretations drawn from the results of a study can be justified
and alternative interpretations can be reasonably ruled out
External validity = extent to which interpretations drawn from the results of a study can be generalized
beyond the narrow boundaries of the specific study
More you try and improve one, other deals with more threats
Typically initially give priority to internal
Threats to Internal Validity
History: influence of events that occur outside context of study
Maturation: changes in participants due to psych or physical developed that cant be disentangled
Testing: repeated testing influence results with familiarity
Instrumentation: in longitudinal, changes in definition of constructs and their measurements can make
the itepetatio of hages i patiipat’s esposes oe diffiult
Statistical regression: extreme score tend to be less extreme upon etestig…hages i soes a e
due to regression rather than experimental manipulation
Selection biases: effect that systematic differences in recruiting participants or assigning participants to
experimental conditions may have on the outcome of the study
Attrition: loss of participants may bias results
Threats to external validity
Sample characteristics: degree to which characteristics of research participants map onto other samples
and populations of interest
Stimulus characteristics and settings: aside from participants, features of the study may constrain
generalizability of results
Reactivity of research arrangements: respond differently than they would in other contexts
Reactivity of assessment: awareness of behaviours and moods can cause alterations
Timing of measurement: when to measure variables
Case studies
Typical case study involves detailed presentation of a person, couple etc illustrating some new or rare
observation or treatment innovation
Valuable for making preliminary connections between events
Case studies can be a rich source of research hypotheses regarding the etiology or maintenance of
Usually author reports clients symptoms or presenting problem prior to and after treatment
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