PSY290 EXAM 1 notes R. Stuetzle
PSY290 EXAM 1 notes R. Stuetzle PSY 290
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This 9 page Study Guide was uploaded by Eureka on Sunday January 17, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PSY 290 at University of Miami taught by Rick Stuetzle in Spring2015. Since its upload, it has received 369 views.
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Date Created: 01/17/16
Approaching Psychology as a Science 3 Ways of “Knowing” 1. Authority: Reliance upon authority figures E.g., parents, teachers, government 2. Use of reason A priori method Result of discussion between people with different ideas leading to consensus 3. Experience Empiricism=process of learning through direct observation or experience Pseudoscience What is it? The term pseudo- science is applied to any field of inquiry that appears to use scientific methods and tries hard to give that impression but is actually based on inadequate, unscientific methods and makes claims that are generally false or, at best, simplistic Characteristics of Pseudoscience 1. Associates with true science: Desire to appear scientifically-based Proponents of pseudoscience do everything they can to give the appearance of being scientific; the pseudoscience confuses its concepts with genuine scientific ones Examples: phrenology and graphology 2. Relies on anecdotal evidence: What’s wrong with relying on anecdotal evidence? The problem occurs when one relies heavily on anecdotes or makes more of them than is warranted. The difficulty is that anecdotal evidence is selective; examples that don’t fit are ignored (you might recognize this as another example of a confirmation bias). 3. Sidesteps disproof: How is disconfirming evidence handled? They sidestep the problem by rearranging the theory a bit or by adding elements to accommodate the anomaly. Another way falsification is sidestepped by pseudoscience is that research reports in pseudoscientific areas are notoriously vague and are never submitted to reputable journals with stringent peer review systems in place. 4. Reduces complex phenomena to overly simplistic concepts Why is this so appealing to people/consumers? Figure out and improve behavior is a universal human activity, and if the process can be simplified, either by measuring a head, interpreting handwriting, or determining an astrological sign, then many people will be taken in by the apparent ease of the explanations Four Goals for Research in Psychology 1. Describing Behavior: Characteristics of a good description? Collect data and summary data To get what is going on 2. Explaining Behavior How can we infer causality? Experimental research Associate variables / correlation All behaviors have causes 5 general principles Beneficence and Nonmalificence establishes the principle that psychologists must constantly weigh the benefits and the costs of the research they conduct and seek to achieve the greatest good in their research. Fidelity and Responsibility obligates researchers to be constantly aware of their responsibility to society and reminds them always to exemplify the highest standards of professional behavior in their role as researchers. Integrity compels researchers to be scrupulously honest in all aspects of the research enterprise. Justice obligates researchers to treat everyone involved in the research enterprise with fairness and to maintain a level of expertise that reduces the chances of their work showing any form of bias. Respect for People’s Rights and Dignity translates into a special need for research psychologists to be vigorous in their efforts to safeguard the welfare and protect the rights of those volunteering as research participants. Ethical Guidelines for Research with Humans: Planning the Study: Balance the need to discover the basic laws of behavior with the need to protect participants 1. Defining degree of “risk” for participants: The situations are not similar to “those ordinarily encountered in daily life or during the performance of routine physical or psychological examinations or tests” Especially important consideration with special populations See Millum & Emanuel (2007). The ethics of international research with abandoned children. Science Marshall, E. (2000). Enforcers halt NIH study called less risky than outdoor play. Science, 290, 1281. When planning a research study, the experimenter always faces the conflicting requirements of (a) producing meaningful research results that could ultimately increase our knowledge of behavior and add to the general good, and (b) respecting the rights and welfare of the study’s participants and causing them no harm. An important component of an IRB’s decision about a proposal involves deter- mining the degree of risk to be encountered by participants A central feature of the APA code is the concept of informed consent (Standard 8.02), the notion that in deciding whether to participate in psychological research, human participants should be given enough information about the study’s purpose and procedures to decide if they wish to volunteer. Deception in a study if it is determined by the researcher, and agreed to by the IRB, that the study could not be done in any other fashion. consent is not needed in studies using anonymous questionnaires; Also, consent is not needed for observational studies that occur in certain locations. The key is whether the setting is a public one—if the study occurs in a place where anyone could be observed by anyone else, consent is not needed Informed Consent and Special Populations because children might not be able to fully understand consent forms, their parents or legal guardians are the ones who give consent. “the child shows some form of agreement to participate without necessarily comprehending the full significance of the research necessary to give informed consent” legal guardians must give truly informed consent for research with people who are confined to institutions. Another issue with confined populations is confidentiality (Kimmel, 2007). While normal guidelines for disguising the identity of participants apply, researchers are legally obligated to break confidentiality under circumstances that involve a clear danger (e.g., a prisoner participant reveals he is about to kill another prisoner). Dehoaxing means revealing to participants the purpose of the experiment and the hypotheses being tested (or some portion of them), and desensitizing refers to the process of reducing stress or other negative feelings that might have been experienced in the session. Research participants should be confident their identities will not be known by anyone other than the experimenter and that only group or disguised (coded) data will be reported. The only exceptions to this occur in cases when researchers might be compelled by law to report certain things disclosed by participants (e.g., child abuse, clear intent to harm oneself or another) Types of Validity: the simplest level of validity is called content validity. This type of validity concerns whether or not the actual content of the items on a test makes sense in terms of the construct being measured. criterion validity, which concerns whether the measure (a) can accurately forecast some future behavior or (b) is meaningfully related to some other measure of behavior. For a test to be useful as an IQ test, for example, it should (a) do a reasonably good job of predicting how well a child will do in school and (b) produce results similar to those produced by other known measures of intelligent behavior. construct validity, concerns whether a test adequately measures some construct, and it connects directly with the operational definition. Construct validity relates to whether a particular measurement truly measures the construct as a whole confidence in construct validity accumulates gradually and inductively as research produces supportive results. Example: phrenological measures of the skull were highly reliable—the distance between a point 2 inches above your left ear and 2 inches above your right ear will not change very much if measured on two separate occasions. However, to say the measure is an indication of the faculty of “destructiveness” is quite another matter. We know skull contour measurement is not a valid measure of destructiveness because it doesn’t make much sense to us today in light of what we know about the brain (content validity), fails to predict aggressive behavior (criterion validity), and does not fit well with other research on constructs relating to destructiveness, such as impulsiveness, or with research on brain function (construct validity). Validity assumes reliability: Measures can be reliable but not valid; valid measures must be reliable Null Hypothesis Significance Testing The first step in significance testing is to assume there is no difference in performance between the conditions that you are studying, in this case between immediate and delayed rewards. This assumption is called the null hypothesis (null = nothing), symbolized H 0 The research hypothesis, the outcome you are hoping to find (fewer learning trials for rats receiving immediate reward), is called the alternative hypothesis (or sometimes research hypothesis) or H 1 Thus, in your study, you hope to be able to disprove or reject H , ther0by supporting (but not proving) H , the hypothesis close to your heart. 1 Hence, an inferential statistical analysis yields only two results: You can either reject H 0r fail to reject it. Failing to reject H0means you believe any differences in the means (and studies almost always find some differences between groups) were most likely chance differences; you have failed to find a genuine effect that can be generalized beyond your sample. Rejecting H means y0u believe an effect truly happened in your study and the results can be generalized. H 0an only be rejected (and at the same time H suppo1ted) with some degree of confidence, which is set by what is called the alpha (α) level. Technically, alpha refers to the probability of obtaining your particular results if H 0no difference) is really true. By convention, alpha is set at .05 (α = .05), but it can be set at other, more stringent, levels as well (e.g., α = .01). If H i0 rejected when alpha equals .05, it means you believe the probability is very low (5 out of 100) that your research outcome is the result of chance factors. If it is not due to chance, then it must be due to something else—namely (you hope), the phenomenon you are studying, immediacy of reinforcement in this case. Type I and Type II Errors Rejecting H0 when it is in fact true is called a Type I error. The chance of this happening is equal to the value of alpha, normally .05. That is, setting alpha at .05 and rejecting H0 means you have a 5% chance of making a Type I error—a 5% chance of thinking you have a real effect but are wrong. Type I errors are sometimes suspected when a research outcome fails several attempts at replication. Type II error. This happens when you fail to reject H0 but you are wrong—that is, you don’t find a significant effect in your study, naturally feel depressed about it, but are in fact in error. There really is a true effect in the population; you just haven’t found it in the sample you tested. Type II errors sometimes occur when the measurements used aren’t reliable or aren’t sensitive enough to detect true differences between groups. Scores on a test measuring some construct should relate to scores on other tests that are theoretically related to the construct (convergent validity) but not to scores on other tests that are theoretically unrelated to the construct (discriminant validity). Cont of studies Questions on PPT Which characteristics of pseudoscience do you detect from the leaflet published by O.S. Fowler entitled “God Creates; Man Cultivates”? 1.Associates with true science: Phrenology originated in legitimate attempts to demonstrate that different parts of the brain had identifiably distinct functions, and it is considered one of the first systematic theories about the localization of brain function 2. Anecdotal evidence: phrenology data consisted mostly of a catalog of examples: a thief with a large area of “acquisitiveness,” a priest with an overdeveloped bump for “reverence,” a prostitute with excessive “amative- ness.” 3. Sidesteps the Falsification Requirement: Not all thieves have bumps in just the right places; research reports in pseudoscientific areas are notoriously vague and are never submitted to reputable journals with stringent peer review systems in place. 4. Reduces Complex Phenomena to Simplistic Concepts Reading a Phrenological Character report written October 16 , 1876h Questions from review In four goals for research in PSY: Which one infers causality? Explaining behavior or predicting behavior? And explaining behavior also leads to a theory, right? the explanation makes sense with reference to some theory or already existing set of laws Prediction—use explanation(causality) to predict
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