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PSY202, Week 2 Notes

by: Emma Cochrane

PSY202, Week 2 Notes PSY 202

Marketplace > University of Oregon > Psychlogy > PSY 202 > PSY202 Week 2 Notes
Emma Cochrane
GPA 3.6

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These notes cover week two of class.
Mind and Society >2
Pennefather J
Class Notes
Psychology, PSY202, psych
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Emma Cochrane on Tuesday January 5, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSY 202 at University of Oregon taught by Pennefather J in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 33 views. For similar materials see Mind and Society >2 in Psychlogy at University of Oregon.


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Date Created: 01/05/16
Chapter 2: Research Methodology Scientific Inquiry: • Scientific inquiry is a way of finding answers to empirical questions (questions that can be answered through observation and measurement) • Scientific method is  Scientific Attitude:  • the scientific attitude is composed of curiosity (passion for exploration), skepticism (doubting and questioning), and humility (ability to accept responsibility when wrong). The Scientific Method Depends on Theories, Hypothesis, and Research: • The four goals of psychological science are: 1. describe (what) 2. predict (when) 3. control (what causes) 4. explain (why) Steps of the Scientific Method: HOMER • Hypothesize • Operationalize • Measure • Evaluate • Replicate/Revise/Report Theory: • A theory is an explanation that integrates principles and organizes and predicts behavior or events. ◦ Ex: low self-esteem contributes to depression Hypothesis: • A hypothesis is a testable prediction, often prompted by a theory, to enable us to accept, reject, or revise a theory. ◦ Ex: People with low self-esteem are apt to feel more depressed Operationalize: • Constructs ◦ Internal attributes or characteristics that cannot be directly observed ◦ Useful for describing and explaining behavior • Operation definition: ◦ Identifies a measurement procedure for measuring an external behavior ◦ Uses the resulting measurements as a definition and a measurement of a hypothetical construct Research Observations • Research would require us to administer tests of self-esteem and depression. Individuals who score low on a self-esteem test and high on a depression test would confirm our hypothesis. Barker, Dembo, and Lewin (1941 study) • Examined whether frustration caused aggression in children • Showed students a room full of attractive toys • Half were able to play right away and half had to wait outside the door • Children that had to wait engaged in more aggressive play styles (throwing toys, breaking them, crashing them together)  Unexpected Findings Can Be Valuable • Unexpected discoveries sometimes occur ◦ Only researchers who are prepared to recognize their importance will benefit from them Types of Studies: • Descriptive ◦ research method that involves observing and noting the behavior of people or animals to provide systematic and objective analysis of the behavior ▪ Naturalistic observation: observing behavior in its natural setting ▪ Ex: developmental studies of children ▪ Ex: watching flirting behavior in a bar ▪ Case study: an in-depth study of one individual or group ▪ Ex: Simonton (UC Davis) study of famous people like eminent scientists to study cognitive ability, or prolific painter to study creativity ▪ Ex: Buglioli & Gentry (1974) study of Charles Manson to understand murder ◦ Pros of Descriptive Method: ▪ hypothesis generation ▪ no bias of self report ◦ Cons of Descriptive Method: ▪ low generalizability ▪ observer bias • Correlational ◦ The technique whereby two or more variables are systematically measured and the relationship between them (i.e., how much one can be predicted from the other) is assessed. ◦ Expressed with a mathematical expression called a correlation coefficient (r); a standardized measure of association that ranges from -1.0 to 1.0 ▪ positive correlation means that as one variable goes up, the other variable goes up ▪ Ex: height and weight are positively correlated; the taller people are, the more they tend to weight. ▪ negative correlation means as one variable goes up, the other variable goes down ▪ Ex: vaccination rate correlate negatively with disease rates: the more often people get vaccinated, the less disease there is. ◦ Scatterplot: a graph comprised of points that are generated by values of two variables. The slope of the points depicts the direction. ▪ Correlation is not causation. ◦ Survey ▪ a technique for ascertaining the self-reported attitudes, opinions or behaviors of people usually done by questioning a representative, random sample of people.  ▪ random sampling: each member of a population has an equal chance of inclusion into a sample (unbiased selection of people) ▪ Pros: ask what you want, pick the population ▪ Cons: people might lie, wording effects, representativeness of the sample ◦ Illusory Correlation:  ▪ The perception of a relationship where no relationship actually exists. ▪ Ex: Parents conceive children after adoption. • Experimental: ◦ Like other sciences, experimentation is the backbone of psychological research. Experiments isolate causes and their effects. ◦ Exploring Cause and Effect: ▪ Many factors influence our behavior. Experiments (1) manipulate factors that interest us, while other factors are kept under (2) control. ▪ Effects generated by manipulated factors isolate cause and effect relationships.  ◦ Laboratory Experiments:  ▪ I ndependent variable: the variable manipulated by the experimenters; the cause. ▪ Dependent variable: the variable measured by the experimenter; the effect. ◦ Zimbardo (1970)  ▪ Noticed a relationship between anonymity and antisocial behavior ▪ Does anonymity cause antisocial behavior? ▪ Brought participation into lab, told them they were going to deliver electric shock to other participants. ▪ Half wore their own clothes and wore name tags ▪ Half were dressed in white coats and hoods that covered their faces. ▪ Result: those who were anonymous delivered TWICE as many shocks. ▪ Independent variable: whether participants were anonymous ▪ Dependent variable: number of shocks delivered ◦ Random Assignment:  ▪ Assigning participants to experimental (breast-fed) and control (formula-fed) conditions by random assignment minimizes pre- existing differences between the two groups. Data Analysis  • Reliability ◦ The extent to which a measure is stable and consistent. • Validity: ◦ The extent to which the experimenter can make confident statements about cause and effect. • Accuracy: ◦ The extent to which an experimental measure is free from error. ▪ Random Error: value of error differs each time. ▪ Systematic Error: value of error is constant. • Describing Data:  ◦ A meaningful description of data is important in research. Misrepresentation may lead to incorrect conclusions. Descriptive Statistics • Statistics used... • Central Tendency: measures that represents the typical response ◦ Mean: the arithmetic average of scores in a distribution obtained by adding the scores and then dividing by the number of scores that were added together. ◦ Median: middle number in a rank-ordered distribution. (if even amount of numbers a set, add the two middle numbers together and divide by two) ◦ Mode: most frequently occurring number • Variability: In a set of  numbers, how widely dispersed the values are from each other and the mean. ◦ Range: The difference between the highest and lowest scores in a distribution. ◦ Standard Deviation: A computed measure of how much scores vary around the mean.  Inferential Statistics • Inferential statistics: Procedures used to make judgements about whether differences actually exist between two sets of numbers • When is an Observed Difference reliable? 1. Representative samples are better than biased samples 2. Less-variable observations are more reliable than more variable ones 3. More cases are better than fewer cases. External Validity: to what extent do the findings of a study generalize to other persons and situations. Generalizability Across People • The question then is, how can researchers tell whether the processes they are studying are universal? • How can we trust that a study done with only college sophomores captures everyday responses? • The ultimate test of an experiment’s external validity is replication ◦ Replication: Repeated a study, often with different subject population or in different settings Ethics • The American Psychological Association publishes a code of ethics that lal its members must respect ◦ This code includes being respectful to all people, treating them with dignity, and protecting them from potential harm. • Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) ◦ Groups of people (often include researchers, laypeople, and administrators) responsible for reviewing proposed research to ensure that it meets standards of protections of participants.


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