Ryan's psy ch02


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Ryan's psy ch02

  1. 1. Chapter 2 PSYCHOLOGICAL METHODS Section 1: Conducting Research Section 2: Surveys, Samples, and Populations Section 3: Methods of Observation Section 4: The Experimental Method Section 5: Ethical Issues
  2. 2. Conducting Research (general info) <ul><li>Psychology is an experimental science </li></ul><ul><li>Assumptions must be supported by evidence </li></ul><ul><li>Procedures consists of five steps: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Forming a research question </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Forming a hypothesis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Testing the hypothesis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Analyzing the results </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Drawing conclusions </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Form a question (posing a question based on daily experience, psychological theory or common knowledge) <ul><li>Form a question from daily experience </li></ul><ul><li>Questions should be based on behavior </li></ul><ul><li>People learn from observing others </li></ul><ul><li>Some questions come from folklore and common knowledge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Two heads are better than one” “Opposites attract” “Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.” </li></ul></ul>Section 1: Conducting Research
  4. 4. Form a hypothesis (making an educated guess) <ul><li>An educated guess </li></ul><ul><li>A hypothesis in the form of an “if-then” statement </li></ul><ul><li>“If-then” reasoning is an example of social scientific reasoning </li></ul>
  5. 5. Test the hypothesis (examining the evidence through any of a variety of means) <ul><li>Psychological knowledge rests on carefully examined human experience </li></ul><ul><li>A hypothesis cannot be considered to be correct until it has been scientifically tested and proved to be right </li></ul><ul><li>Psychologists do not rely on people’s opinion </li></ul><ul><li>Answer research questions or test hypotheses through a variety of methods. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Analyze Results (looking for patterns or relationships in the evidence) <ul><li>What the findings mean </li></ul><ul><li>Have to figure out how to interpret the reaction </li></ul><ul><li>Psychologists collect a great deal more data than needed </li></ul><ul><li>Look for patterns and relationships in the data </li></ul><ul><li>They must decide which data support their hypothesis and which data do not. </li></ul>Section 1: Conducting Research
  7. 7. Draw a conclusion (determining whether the findings support the hypothesis and adjusting it if they do not) <ul><li>They draw conclusions about their questions and their hypotheses </li></ul><ul><li>When observations do not support hypotheses they often change the theories or beliefs from which the hypotheses were derived </li></ul><ul><li>Psychologists need to keep an open mind </li></ul><ul><li>Be willing to adjust or modify their hypotheses if their findings make it necessary to do so </li></ul>
  8. 8. Replication <ul><li>Findings may represent a random occurrence </li></ul><ul><li>For a study to be confirmed it must be replicated (repeated) to show the same results </li></ul><ul><li>If the studies are repeated and obtain different results, the findings of the first study are questioned </li></ul><ul><li>It is important to study both males and females if the goal is to make generalizations about all members of the species. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Does this lead to new questions? <ul><li>Whether the findings of the research study support or contradict the hypothesis, they are likely to lead to new research questions. </li></ul><ul><li>Once new questions are asked, the process begins all over again. </li></ul>
  10. 11. Question: Why are proper sampling techniques important? <ul><li>Surveys are taken to find out about people’s attitudes and behaviors directly. </li></ul><ul><li>Two survey methods—written questionnaires and interviewing </li></ul><ul><li>The findings of interviews and questionnaires are not completely accurate. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>People may not answer honestly about their attitudes or behavior </li></ul></ul>Section 2: Surveys, Samples, and Populations
  11. 12. Populations and Samples <ul><li>Must decide what group or groups of people they wish to examine and how they will be selected. </li></ul><ul><li>Target population—is the whole group you want to study or describe. </li></ul><ul><li>Researchers study a sample of the target population </li></ul>
  12. 13. Selecting Samples <ul><li>Samples must be selected scientifically to ensure that the samples accurately represent the populations they are supposed to represent. </li></ul><ul><li>Random Sample—individuals are selected by chance from the target population </li></ul><ul><li>Stratified sample—subgroups in the population are represented proportionally in the sample. </li></ul><ul><li>A random sample of 1,000 to 1,500 people will usually represent the general American population reasonably well. </li></ul>
  13. 14. Generalizing Results <ul><li>Researchers do not use a sample that represents an entire population </li></ul><ul><li>Researchers want to know about only one group within the population </li></ul><ul><li>Researchers are cautious about generalizing their findings to groups other than those from which their samples were drawn </li></ul><ul><li>Researchers cannot learn about the preferences of all people by studying only one group of people, such as men. </li></ul><ul><li>The gender of the individuals in the sample is not the only characteristic that researchers must take into account. </li></ul>
  14. 15. Volunteer Bias <ul><li>Researchers have little control over who responds to surveys or participates in research studies. </li></ul><ul><li>They cannot force people to complete the questionnaires. </li></ul><ul><li>Bias—a predisposition to a certain point of view. </li></ul><ul><li>People who volunteer to participate in studies often bring with them a volunteer bias. </li></ul><ul><li>They often have a different outlook from people who do not volunteer for research studies. </li></ul><ul><li>Volunteers may: be more interested, have more spare time. </li></ul><ul><li>Depending on what the study is about, any or all of the factors could skew the results. </li></ul>
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