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Chapter 2 Textbook Reading Notes

by: Lorena Roberts

Chapter 2 Textbook Reading Notes Psych 360

Marketplace > University of Tennessee - Knoxville > Psychlogy > Psych 360 > Chapter 2 Textbook Reading Notes
Lorena Roberts
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About this Document

These notes cover the first reading assignment for Psych 360
Social Psych
Dr. Lowell Gaertner
Class Notes
Psychology, social psychology, psych, Tennessee




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lorena Roberts on Tuesday January 12, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psych 360 at University of Tennessee - Knoxville taught by Dr. Lowell Gaertner in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 53 views. For similar materials see Social Psych in Psychlogy at University of Tennessee - Knoxville.


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Date Created: 01/12/16
January 18, 2016 Chapter 2: Methodology Social Psychology: An Empirical Science The results of some social psychology experiments will seem obvious- like you could have predicted them. We are all familiar with the two topics social psychologists are concerned: social behavior and social influence. Hindsight bias: where people exaggerate how much they could have predicted an outcome after knowing that it occurred Three types of method sets: observational, correlational, and experimental. The Observational Method: Describing Social Behavior Observational method: best to use when the goal is to describe what a particular group of people or type of behavior is like - A researcher observes people and records measurement or impressions of their behavior - Example: ethnography—a method by which researchers attempt to understand a group or culture by observing it in action (chief method of cultural anthropology research; social psychologists use ethnography more and more as different cultures are explored more) - The key to ethnography is to avoid imposing one’s preconceived notions as much as possible; this is in order to understand the point of view of the people being studied - Interjudge reliability: the level of agreement between two or more people who independently observe and code a set of data; if two or more judges independently come up with the same conclusion—researchers can ensure observations are not subjective - Archival analysis: examining accumulated documents of a culture  Limits of the Observational Method: o Certain kinds of behaviors are hard to examine this way because it’s hard to predict when they will happen in order to be able to observe them o Social psychologists tend to want to predict and explain behavior instead of just describing it Correlational method: two variables are systematically measured and then relationship between them is assessed. - Correlation coefficient: a statistic that assesses how well you can predict one variable from another {such as how well you can predict weight from height) - Surveys: research in which as representative sample of people are asked questions about their attitudes or behavior - Random selection: a way of ensuring that a sample of people is representative of a population by giving everyone in the population an equal chance of being selected from the sample Limits: Correlation does not equal causation Two variables can be related without one causing the other. Independent and Dependent Variables: The independent variable is the one that is changed by the researcher in order to see if it has an effect or a change on some other variable. While the dependent variable is the one the researcher measures to see if it is influenced by the independent variable. This means the dependent variable is hypothesized o depend on the independent variable. Random Assignment to Condition: a technique that allows experimenters to minimize differences among participants as the cause of the results Probability level (p-value): a number calculated with statistical techniques that tells researchers how likely it is that the results of their experiment occurred by chance and not because of the independent variable. External validity: the extent to which the results of a study can be generalized to other situations and other people Psychological realism: the extent to which the psychological processes triggered in an experiment are similar to psychological processes that occur in everyday life Cover story: a disguised version of the study’s true purpose. Field experiment: researchers study behavior outside of the laboratory (in the natural environment) Replications: the ultimate test of an experiment’s external validity Meta-analysis: statistical technique that averages the results of two or more studies to see if he effect of an independent variable is reliable Basic research: the goal is to find the best answer to the question of why people behave as they do, purely for reasons of intellectual curiosity Applied research: geared toward solving a particular social problem Cross-cultural research: research conducted with members of different cultures, to see whether the psychological processes of interest are present in both cultures, or whether they are specific to the culture in which people were raised Evolutionary psychology: attempts to explain social behavior in terms of genetic factors that evolved over time according to the principles of natural selection Informed consent: the researcher explains the nature of the experiment and makes sure the participants give consent to participate Deception: misleading participants about the true purpose of a study Institutional Review Board (IRB): reviews research before it is conducted Debriefing: the process of explaining to the participants, at the end of an experiment, the true purpose of the study and exactly what transpired


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