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Chapter 2

PSYC 3430 Chapter Notes - Chapter 2: Institutional Review Board, Western Electric, Irving Janis

Course Code
PSYC 3430
Peter Papadogiannis

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Chapter 2
ARISTOTLE humans are by nature group seeking animals
Three basic activities that science requires:
1. Measurement
2. Research
3. Theorizing
HOMAN “Stretch nature out on the rack” by systematically measuring group
phenomena and group processes
Three critical requirements of a scientific approach to the study of groups:
1. The use of reliable and valid methods to measure group phenomena
2. Researchers must design research procedures to test their hypotheses about
3. Researchers must develop theories that organize their findings conceptually
and comprehensively
Measurement in Group Dynamics
Science often begin with measurement
Observation and Self Reporting measures
Researchers who study groups often begin with observation
oA measurement method that involves watching and recording
individual and group actions
William Fort Whyte
oStreet corner gangs
oJoined group Nortons
Overt observation openly watching and recording group behaviour with no
attempt to conceal one’s research purposed
Covert observation watching and recording group behaviour without the
participant’s knowledge
oRaises few ethical issues, as long as it does not violate people’s right
to privacy
oInstitutional Review Board (IRB) a group that is responsible for
reviewing research procedures to make certain that they are
consistent with ethical guidelines for protecting human participants
Participant Observation watching and recording group behaviours while
taking part in the social process

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Hawthorne effect:
A change in behaviour that occurs when individuals know they are
being studied by researchers
Elton Mayo Hawthorne Plant, Western Electric Company
Qualitative Study:
A research procedure used to collect and analyze nonnumeric,
unquantified types of data such as text, images or objects
Generates data
oGeneral qualities and characteristics rather than precise
quantities and amounts
oVerbal descriptions of group interactions
Structured Observational Methods:
A research procedure that classifies (codes) group members’ actions
into defined categories
Quantitative Study:
Numerical results
A research procedure used to collect and analyze data in a numeric
form, such as frequencies, proportions or amounts
Developed 2 of the best known structures coding systems for studying
1. Interaction Process Analysis (IPA)
Used to classify group behaviour into task orientated and
relationship orientated categories
1 of 12 categories
Observers using IPA must be able to listen to a group
discussion, break content down intro behavioural units and
then classify each unit into one of 12 categories
2. Systematic Multiple Level Observation of Groups (SYMLOG)
Newer version of IPA
26 different categories
Assumes that group activities can be classified along three
oDominance vs. submissiveness
oFriendliness vs. unfriendliness
oAcceptance vs. opposition to authority
Reliability a measure’s consistency across time, components and raters
Interrater Reliability if different raters, working independently, all think
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