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Chapter 2: Sources of Information

by: Brittany Ariana Borzillo

Chapter 2: Sources of Information PSYC3980

Marketplace > University of Georgia > Psychology > PSYC3980 > Chapter 2 Sources of Information
Brittany Ariana Borzillo
GPA 3.7

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Research Methods in Psychology
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Brittany Ariana Borzillo on Thursday September 8, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC3980 at University of Georgia taught by in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 6 views. For similar materials see Research Methods in Psychology in Psychology at University of Georgia.

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Date Created: 09/08/16
Sources of Information Terms Comparison group: a control groups – something that enables us to know what would happen if the manipulated variable wasn’t manipulated Confounds: alternative explanations for an outcome Confederate: an actor playing a specific role for the experimenter Research vs. Experience  Experience isn’t a Comparison Group o Comparison groups enable us to compare what would happen with and without the thing we are interested in  Experience is Confounded o Too many things are occurring in everyday life for any conclusions to be uncontaminated o Confounded  confused o Confounds occur when you think that one thing caused an outcome but something different was the actual cause o Variables are not isolated in personal experiences  Why Research is More Sufficient o In a controlled study, scientists can set up conditions such that they include at least one comparison group thereby avoiding confounds o Privileged view  The experimenter can see every possible scenario when looking at the multiple control groups  Research is Probabilistic o Scientific conclusions are based on patterns that emerge only when researchers set up comparison groups and test multiple conditions o The conclusions may show a strong probability or a weak probability, but they are predictions and never correct 100% of the time Research vs. Intuition  Biased by Faulty Thinking o Generally swayed by information that “makes sense” regardless of whether its right o Good stories  Tend to believe that good stories are true  Common sense takes over o Easy explanations  Availability heuristic  States that things that pop up easily in our mind tend to guide our thinking  Thinking is biased by recent events  Causes overestimations o Not considering what’s not in front of you  Forget to seek out negative information  What wasn’t done is equally as important as what was  Failing to look for absence all together  Present/present bias  Biased by Motivation o Most appealing evidence  We may only seek out the information that we like  Cherry-picking o may only seek and accept the evidence that supports own claim o Biased questioning 2  Questions asked during an experiment could be focusing the participants to the answer that the experimenter wants  Confirmatory hypothesis testing  Selecting questions that would lead participants toward a particular, expected answer  Not appropriate for scientific study  Biased Against Bias o Bias blind spot  Belief that we are unlikely to fall prey to the other cognitive biases  Because we see ourselves as unbiased, any difference in data that someone else collects is seen as the biased party o Enables trusting our biased preconceptions  Intuitive Thinking vs Scientific Reasoning o Intuitive thinking leads to mistakes o We intuitively seek information that confirms our thoughts and ideas o Scientific reasoning necessitates that have multiple comparison groups, so we can see all possible outcomes in different scenarios Trusting Authorities  Find the sources of an authority’s ideas before trusting their conclusions o Make sure their resource and/or research is reliable Finding and Reading Research  Consulting scientific sources o Journal articles  Most important source  Empirical journal articles 3  Report conclusions of an empirical experiment  Contain details about the study’s method, statistical tests used, and numerical results of study  Review articles  Summary of all published studies that have been done in one research area  Meta-analysis o Combines the results of many studies and gives a number that summarizes the magnitude or effect size of a relationship  Weighs each study proportionally  Chapters in Edited Books  Each chapter is written by a different contributor  Scientists are summarizing a body of research and explaining their theories behind it  Full Length Books  In certain fields of study books are a common way for scholars to publish their work  Finding Sources o PsychINFO  Comprehensive tool for sorting through a vast number of psychological research articles  Maintained and updated weekly by the APA o Alternatives  Google scholar  Indexes only empirical journal articles and scholarly books  Contains information from all scholarly disciplines 4  Reading Research o Components of Empirical Journal  Abstract  Concise summary of article  Intro  First section of regular text  Explain the topic of study  Method  Explains in detail how researchers conduct their study  Results  Quantitative and relevant qualitative data is presented  Discussion  Opening paragraph summarizes the study’s question and methods and how well the data supports the hypothesis  Authors promote their study’s contributions  Discuss significance  References  Contains a full bibliographic listing of all sources cited in the article o Reading with Purpose: Empirical Journals  What is the argument?  Theory-data cycle means that research will be based on some hypothesis  What is the evidence to support the argument? o Reading with Purpose: Chapters  Usually create headings  Still need to find argument and evidence  Research in Less Scholarly Places o Retail book stores  Trade books written for a general audience  Written for people without a psychology degree 5  More readable language  No references o Not about actual psychology o Wiki Research  Demographic encyclopedias  Anybody can edit them  Not comprehensive  Reference list is not comprehensive  Only what editors have chosen to include o Popular Press  Covered in magazines and on tv  Need to be careful for accuracy  6


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