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Psyc 305, Week 7 notes

by: Clarissa Hinshaw

Psyc 305, Week 7 notes Psych 305

Clarissa Hinshaw
GPA 3.5

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Notes for chapter 7.
Research Methods
Keith Millis
Class Notes
Psychology, research methods
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Clarissa Hinshaw on Sunday March 6, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psych 305 at Northern Illinois University taught by Keith Millis in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 18 views. For similar materials see Research Methods in Psychlogy at Northern Illinois University.

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Date Created: 03/06/16
Chapter 7 Survey Research   Surveys give participants the opportunity to tell us about themselves.  Data is highly valued by society.  Variables include attitudes, emotional states, and self­reports and behaviors.   The data are used to study behaviors as well as how they change.  Survey and experimental research are sometimes combined.   Researchers assume people will be truthful in surveys, but this isn’t always the case.  Response set: responding to all survey questions from one perspective.  o Also called social desirability or ‘faking good’.  Researchers must define the objective of their research.   Surveys often ask about attitudes and beliefs.  Surveys usually ask demographic info such as age, gender, and other questions relevant  to the survey.  Surveys often measure behavior, such as drinking, sex, or eating patterns.  The way questions are worded can affect how participants can answer the questions. Ex:  responses to the question: Do you support ‘assistance to the poor’? vs Do you support  ‘welfare’.  o Questions should be simple and to the point. o Don’t ask two questions at once. Ex: what is your age and gender identity?  o Avoid using loaded questions, using bias.  o Avoid using negative wording, such as ‘not’.  o To avoid bias, questions should be mixed up. Ex: I have friends to spend time  with vs I am lonely.   Closed ended questions: give limited response options. Ex: multiple choice.   Open ended questions: give more choice for response. Ex: short answer or free response questions.  Closed ended questions are cheaper and easier to respond, but open ended questions  provide more of an insight into what the person is thinking.   Some responses occur on a scale, giving people to express themselves more than two  forced choice options. This includes the graphic rating scale, semantic differential scale,  and the nonverbal scale of children (the faces to test emotions in children).   The survey should be grammatically correct and free of spelling errors.   The most interesting questions should go first and similar topics should be grouped  together.   It is a good idea to have surveys edited before distributing them.  o Friends or coworkers can edit surveys or people from the sample population.  o The editors can tell the researcher how they interpret the questions and how they  would respond answer choices.  o This feedback can be used to improve the survey.   Types of surveys o Questionnaires: questions are in written format and participants write their  answers.   Advantages: cheaper, anonymous  Disadvantages: if the participants cannot read or understand the  questions, some may not find it boring.   These can be distributed in person individually or in groups, through the  mail, or online.  Advantages of in person questionnaires including making sure participants actually participate in the survey and participants can ask questions.  Mail surveys are cheap to administer, but have low response rates and no  one present to help if participants have questions.   Internet surveys may bring in biased samples and pose ethical issues, since it is easy to lie about one’s identity.  o Interviews: done face to face to face or over the phone, Skype, Facetime, etc.   People are more likely to complete an interview than a questionnaire.   If the respondent’s answers need clarity, follow­up questions can be asked.   Interview bias: showing preference or expectation of some participants over  others. Ex: showing more bias toward friends or family than strangers or  acquaintances.   Sometimes interviews are done in focus groups of 6­10 people at one time. Kind  of like a group job interview.  Panel study: a study with more than one person at a time.   Confidence interval: the amount of certainty a person has about a variable lying within a specific range. Ex: a person can be 95% confident of their test score being a C or better.   Confidence interval fluctuates with sample size  Stratified random sampling: choosing an amount from each category.  Cluster sampling: a number of groups out of a large number of groups. Ex: sampling 2  groups out of 1,000.   Haphazard sampling: a sample done out of convenience. Ex: having your friends and  peers complete a survey in class.   Purposive sampling: sampling from a specific group. Ex: college students, transgender  individuals.   Quota sampling: data where the sample reflects the percentage in the population. Ex: if  Asians make up 10% of the population, 10% of the sample will be Asian. 


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