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PSYC 2130 (181)
Chapter 1

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York University
PSYC 2130
Krista Phillips

Chapter One Notes: • Scientific Method: embracing all branches of science, the applications of this approach vary from one research discipline to another. Researches in varied disciplines (i.e. biomedicine vs. psych) use variations of this approach. o Five reasons to know this 1. enhance our understanding of the full range of this influence by learning about the logic and evidence used by researchers to open up the world to scrutiny and explanation 2. not clearly understanding how researchers cast and address questions costs us dearly 3. acquire information and skills you can use later 4. learn about the limits of particular studies and methods 5. may want to make a career of it • Alternatives to the Scientific method: o Method of tenacity: most primitive approach. Bound by tradition and involves clinging to claims or beliefs because they have been around for a while. Exclude anything that challenges their belief  i.e.: earth is immobile and centre of universe (Ptolemaic treatise in 2 century)  seek out info that is consistent with their belief o Method of Authority: presumption that something is true because someone in a position of authority says it is  Similar to tenacity because you’re conforming • Witch burning • Holocaust • Ethnic cleansing  Improvement: • Civilized society would cease to exist without willingness to obey laws  Positive side: • Physician prescribing meds • Mechanic saying change breaks o Depend on their honest and authority of expertise o But not everyone finds the same people credible o A priori method: people rely primarily on their individual power of reason and logic to make sense of the world and explain it to others  More intellectual and respectable  How much to top? What career path to take?  It is hard to find a fault with this but it is constrained by limits of pure reason • Empirical: means based on observations • Scientific method is a misnomer; it’s not just one fixed empirical method, but many procedures and empirical techniques. • Empirical reasoning: a combination of careful logic, organized, observation and measurement that is open to scrutiny by others th • It entered into scientific study at the end of 19 century o Wilhelm Wundt built the first formal experimental laboratory • Ceci et al. : accuracy of children’s eyewitness testimony and “Sam Stone” the clumsy character • Asch: the degree to which people with normal intelligence will resist mindlessly conforming to a consensus view. o Study asks which line is longer, ac
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