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PSY Midterm Review

by: Emily Notetaker

PSY Midterm Review PSY 3213

Emily Notetaker

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Research Methods in Psychology
Research Methods in Psychology
Dr. Brannick
Study Guide
50 ?




Popular in Research Methods in Psychology

Popular in Psychlogy

This 17 page Study Guide was uploaded by Emily Notetaker on Monday March 7, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PSY 3213 at University of South Florida taught by Dr. Brannick in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 61 views. For similar materials see Research Methods in Psychology in Psychlogy at University of South Florida.


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Date Created: 03/07/16
Chapter 1 6 questions. Focused mostly on the theory-data cycle. Know definitions. Chapter 2 7 questions. Questions on research vs. experience, research vs. intuition, trusting authorities.  Research vs. experience o Faulty perceptions  We get information from our (sometimes faulty) perceptions  Our brain makes models of reality o Out-of-body experiences; hallucinations; (manipulated) memories o The earth is flat o The sun revolves around the earth (it seemed obvious for centuries, didn’t it?  We get information from our (faulty) perceptions and our expectations influence what we see  Ex: counting the number of “F’s” in a sentence o Compared to what? (experience doesn’t have a comparison group)  Research involves comparisons  Associations before causation o Experience is confounded  When we evaluate our own experience, we are not able to control for multiple, co-occurring effects on our moods or behaviors o We might be unique  Even if we have perfect reality perception and perfect memory, our experience might be – and probably is – different from anyone else  So your experience may tell you very little about another person off the street o We might have been exposed to a biased sample  Were often exposed to a nonrandom – or what psychologists called a “biased” sample of people from the general population  Ex: clinicians believe that sexual abuse leads to severe problems later on; it is impossible to quit drinking or smoking on your own o Controlled research is better than experience  Researchers include a comparison group, control for confounds, and strive to evaluate information about bias.  Confederate: an actor playing a specific role for the experimenter.  Trusting the authorities on the subject o We trust the authorities without representation  “If it’s in the book, it must be true.”, “if it’s in a BIG book, it must be doubly true.”  But what the authority says (or the book says) could be based on:  Authority’s research  Authority’s assumptions  Authority’s personal experience  Authority’s political or financial interest/innovation  And, authority’s reasoning can be flawed Chapter 3 10 questions. Questions on variables, the three claims, and interrogating the three claims. Questions on the film “Prisoners of Silence.” Focus is more on the claims than the validities (but don’t ignore the validities – a couple of questions on this).  Variables o Measured  One whose levels are simply observed and recorded  Height, IQ, and blood pressure  You are not creating it, you are just observing it  Sampling of condition (GPA, personality) o Manipulated  A variable you “create”. Assign to condition  Variable a researcher controls, usually by assigning participants to the different levels of that variable  Giving participants in a research study 10 milligrams of a medication, versus giving another group 20 mg. o Independent  The variable thought to be the cause, explanation, antecedent, or predictor  In experimental design, variable that you are manipulating or changing. The variable that is under the researchers control  In correlative design, you don’t manipulate it – you can measure it.  Differing values of the IV are called “levels”  May vary quantitatively o Caffeine: 2 vs. 4 tall Starbucks pike place per day o Obedience: 2 vs. 4 commands  May vary qualitatively o Caffeinated beverages: coffee, tea, cola o Obedience: male vs. female experimenter o Dependent  The variable that is INFLUENCED by your IV; that which is considered the outcome, result, criterion or consequent  Your IV is a push, your DV is what is being pushed o Confound  Variable that is an alternative explanation of the result, a reason other than the IV for the result; causes faulty inference  Can come from your methods in experimental designs  In correlational designs, there are always many possible confounds because of lack of assignment to treatment.  Three claims o Claim: the argument that someone is trying to make or proposition that someone asserts  Ex: music lessons can raise a child’s IQ o Frequency and Intensity Claims  Describes a particular rate or degree of a single variable  Gives percentage or mean of some “event” in population  Focus on only one variable (% of Americans taking meds)  Variable ALWAYS measured, never manipulated  8 million Americans consider suicide each year  At times, children play with the impossible  Deadliest day for suicides: Wednesday o Association claim  Argues that one level of a variable is likely to be associated with a particular level of another variable  “income is very inversely related to heart disease”  X and Y are related  As x changes, so does Y  Doesn’t claim that X causes Y!  Claim allows variables being related for any reason  Two measured (not manipulated) variables  Eating disorder rick higher in educated families  Sweet or dry? Wine choice tied to personality  Sexual orientation linked to handedness  Four types of association  Positive  Negative  No relationship  Curved relationship o Causal claims  Argues that one of the variables is responsible for changing the other  Has two variables and the variable covary (related)  As x changes, so does y AND  X is responsible for changes in Y (necessary and sufficient; not necessarily sole cause, except in the study) Association claim verbs Causal claim verbs Is linked to Causes Promotes Goes with Affects Reduces Is associated with Curbs Prevents Is correlated with Exacerbates Distracts Prefers Changes Fights Are more/less likely to Leads to Worsens Predicts Makes increases Is tied to Helps Trims Is at risk for Hurts adds The Four Validities  Construct o How well the variables in the study are measured or manipulated. Are the operational variables used in the study a good approximation of the constructs of interest?  Reliability & validity of measured variables  Consider measurement of weight o Bathroom scale o Observer judgement o Self-assessment (survey question)  Validity (via manipulation check) of manipulated variables  Consider induction of negative affect by a sad movie  External (generalizing your experiment to the outside) o External Validity: Do your results apply to people & situations/contexts that are different from those of your experiment?  Men to women? Labs to bars to sporting events? o Generalization: part of external validity. Applying the results from an experiment to a different or broader population.  we want to take our results beyond the narrow confines of our specific experiment  consider résumé study by students acting as hiring managers  Statistical o Researchers use statistics to describe their data o Frequencies: margin of error (+ or -) o False alarms (Type I Error)  Too many analyses o Misses (Type II Error)  Too small sample size  Internal o The extent to which the observed effect is caused only by the experimental treatment condition; freedom from confounds  The ability to draw conclusions about a causal relationship from our data  In sum: did your IV actually cause change that you observe in your DV, or was it something else? Chapter 4 7 questions. Focus is primarily on Belmont Report and general principles. Questions about IRB and one question on historical events with Belmont. Belmont report  Principle of beneficence o Help (don’t harm) people  Protect participants from harm and ensure well-being  Maximize benefits and minimize harm  Cost-benefit analysis for participants  Cost-benefit for society  Sometimes benefit to participants and benefit to society pitched against each other  Principle of respect for persons o Let them decide (autonomy)  Informed consent  Participant can decide for him/herself whether they want to brave the risks and benefits and participate  Protection of vulnerable populations  Children; prisoners; mentally ill; drug users  Especially vulnerable to coercion  Freedom from coercion  Feeling pressure to participate  Will get in trouble if you don’t  Have to participate to get a service (or $$) that can’t get elsewhere  Principle of justice o Participant population should benefit  Who ought to receive the benefits of research and bear its burdens?  How are participants selected? And do they represent the people who will benefit from the study?  When applied, this principle makes sure that the sample which you are studying is representative of the population that should receive benefit. APA Ethical Principles  Five general ethical principles 1. Beneficence and nonmaleficence  Treat people in ways that benefit them. Do not cause suffering. Conduct research that will benefit society  Milgram obedience study 2. Fidelity and responsibility  Establish relationships of trust; accept responsibility for professional behavior (in research, teaching, and clinical practice) 3. Integrity  Strive to be accurate, truthful, and honest in ones role as researcher, teacher, or practitioner 4. Justice  Strive to treat all groups of people fairly. Sample research participants from the same populations that will benefit from the research. Be aware of biases.  Tuskegee syphilis study targeting black males living in a disadvantaged social group 5. Respect for people’s rights and dignity  Recognize that people are autonomous agents. Protect people’s rights, including the right to privacy, the right to give consent for treatment or research, and the right to have participation treated confidentially. Understand that some populations may be less able to give autonomous consent, and take precautions against coercing such people.  10 APA Ethical Standards (only standard 8 applies in research) 1. IRB (Internal Revenue Board)  Committee responsible for reviewing all proposed research involving human participants and ensuring research is being done  Members (at least 5 in total) include:  Faculty members from diff. departments  At least one community member (no ties to university)  At least one nonscientist  If doing prison research, one member has to be designated prison advocate  What IRB does  Chief function: o Considers costs and benefits of research  Other factors monitored by IRB  Confidentiality o Would you want people to know how you answered on questionnaires even if they were innocuous?  Measures taken to protect sensitive data o Identifiers should be kept separate from data o Main research personnel access only  Cannot publish results w/ identifying data 2. Informed consent  Signing a document stating that you are willing to participate in the study 3. Freedom from coercion  Should be able to leave the experiment w/o consequences  $$$: generally they should be able to earn same $ if they didn’t participate  Treatment – you have to be able to get a reasonable alt. if you choose not to participate in the study  Research w/ prisoners or drug users  Students? 4. Deception  Always unethichal?  Ques. To ask before using deception  Is the value of the study worth it? o Violation of respect for persons o However: cost to participant < benefit to society (beneficence)  Alternatives? (Must be alternative!)  Sometimes only way to investigate important questions 5. Debriefing  Required for deception studies (By APA)  Often required for any study, in a university setting  Debriefing procedure  Explain purpose of study  Remove bad feelings  Get info. 6. Animal research  Strict federal guidelines for animal research  IACUC committees (Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee)  Guide for care and use of laboratory animals o Replacement, refinement, reduction 7. Research misconduct  Fabrication  Researchers invent data that fit their hypothesis  Falsification  Researchers influence the study’s results o Deleting contradictory data o Actively influencing what participants are doing  Plagiarism  In very broad terms: representing someone else’s work as your own  Writer must cite all his/her sources  When describing others ideas, have to give credit (cite the originator of idea)  When quoting, put quotation marks around quoted paragraph [or indent] & give citation & page number Chapter 5 9 questions. Questions on operational definitions and kinds of measurement, types of reliability, face and content validity, convergent and discriminant validity. One question on validity covered in lecture but not in the book (recall a couple of things APA describes that Morling does not). Operational definitions  Operational definition o Process of turning a concept of interest into something we can all see  Reliability and validity o Evaluating the relationship b/w CONSTRUCT and OPERATIONALIZED variables o Reliability – degree to which scores show consistency or repeatability – freedom from error o Validity – degree to which scores support inferences or intended meaning  Bathroom scale:  Gives consistent measures of weight (step on, step off)  Provides good data for inferring who is heavier, what luggage will cost, whether we are gaining or losing weight over time  Not so good for determining who is taller (although there will be some relation b/w height and weight)  Good reliability, good validity for weight, poor validity for height  Types of reliability o Internal reliability  Frequently also referred to as internal consistency (not to be confused w/ internal validity!)  Its purpose is to verify whether items that are supposed to measure the same construct are actually producing similar scores  How do we measure this?  FANCY math  Cronbach’s alpha  Est. correlation b/w the observed (total) score and the universe score, where universe is based on all possible items of the same kind. Alpha is derived from inter-item correlations o Inter-rater reliability  Its purpose is to measure the degree of agreement or consistency b/w raters (people)  If inter-rater reliability is poor, it suggests that:  The operationalization of the construct if defective OR  The raters need to be re-trained or  Some raters can be excuse (fired) o Test retest reliability  Its purpose is to determine the variation in a specific measure over different time points  Correlation b/w scores at the diff. time points  Usually used for measures that should not change drastically over a short period of time  Can be used over a long period of time; however, reliability may be lower  Developmental changes Chapter 6 8 questions. Construct validity and question wording/format, encouraging accurate responses, construct validity of observations, why observations can be better than self- report.  Self-report measures o Projective measures (e.g. the Rorschach inkblots) o Associative lists o Advantages: rich set of data o Disadvantages: requires content analysis (difficult and time-consuming) o Questionable validity in many cases o Surveys  Well-developed set of response formats (items) ready to use  Easily replicated quantitative data (diff. researchers get the same numbers)  Scales – diff. items designed to measure the same conceptual variable o Likert scales o Yes/no or agree/disagree scales o Forced-choice (narcissism) scales  Observational/behavioral measures o Behaviors are counted and/or coded  Ainsworth child attachment  Airport separation o Can also involve things like time (e.g. reaction time) rather than counting behaviors  Amount of time child cries after mother returns  Speed of walking (distance/time) o Marshmallow experiment with little kids Chapter 7 8 questions. Sample vs. population, what is a biased sample (vs. sampling error), several questions on ways of obtaining biased samples and ways of obtaining unbiased samples.


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