Psych Chapter 1
Some notes in notebook 09/26/2013
Theoryan explanation using an integrated set of principles that organizes observations/data/info.
Hypothesisa testable prediction implied by a theory. Educated guess.
Simple observationone source of research questions psychology is simply observing the world
around you and asking questions about why people think and behave as they do.
Personal experiencelike you, psychologists want to understand their own tendencies, and foibles.
Replicationseeing whether a basic finding can be observed again with different participants and under
Operational definitiona specific statement of the procedures used to define research variables, so
as to allow others to replicate the original observations.
Choosing a research design: settinglab or field, methodsdescriptive, correlational, experimental.
The Case Studyan in depth investigation of a single (or very few) subjects.
The Survey a investigation of many cases in less depth by asking people to report opinions and
behaviors. A technique for ascertaining the selfreported attitudes, opinions or behaviors of people usually
done by questioning a representative sample of people—one that accurately portrays the population of
Naturalistic Observationrecording behavior in its natural environments, and describing it in detail.
Experimental methods: purpose is to explore cause and effect by manipulating one or more factors,
while holding other factors constant.
Variableanything that can fluctuate. Whether it’s rainy or sunny, warm or cold, person is male or female,
good or bad mood.
Independent Variable spect of the situation or of individuals that can vary independently of other variables.
The variables whose effect is being studied.
Dependent Variable te variable that may change in response to manipulations of the independent
Random Assignment assgning participants to experimental and control groups by chance, thus minimizing
preexisting differences between the groups that could affect the dependent variable.
Confounding Variableanother variable that complicates the experiment.
Correlational methods: purpose is to observe naturally occurring relationships between variables.
Correlation Coefficienta statistical index (1 to 1) of the relationship between two variables.
Scatterplot a graphed cluster of dots, each of which represents the values of two variable. The slope of the
points suggests the direction of the relationship, while the amount of scatter suggests the strength of the
Directionality Problemvariable A causes variable B or viceversa. Low selfesteem (A) causes depression
(B) or depression causes low selfesteem. Third Var