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Published byElizabeth Williamson Modified over 4 years ago

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**The Research Process: How We Find Things Out**

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The Scientific Method What are the components of the scientific method? Specify a problem Systematic observation Data Replication Form a hypothesis Test the hypothesis Operational definition Formulate a theory Test the theory

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The Scientific Method What is the relationship between theory, prediction (hypothesis), and data? Prediction Theory Data Theory development, validation, correction

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**Descriptive Research Naturalistic observation Case studies Surveys**

Allows one to see patterns in the real world Case studies Focus on a single interesting case in detail Surveys A set of questions put to a number of participants about their beliefs, attitudes, preferences, or activities

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**Correlational Research**

Studies where the relationships between two or more variables are measured but not manipulated Examples Family income and IQ score Height and shoe size MAO levels and thrill seeking

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Correlation Strength and direction

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**Correlation Research Strength Weakness**

Can study variables that cannot be manipulated Weakness Correlation does not imply causation

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**Designing Experiments: Independent Variable**

The aspect of a situation that is intentionally varied while another aspect is measured Examples Amount of practice allowed Participants randomly assigned so that they receive a drug or placebo Present visual or auditory stimuli Temperature of room

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**Designing Experiments: Dependent Variable**

The aspect of a situation that is measured while the independent variable is changed Examples Number of words recalled Speed of response Number of cigarettes smoked Electrical activity in the brain

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**Designing Experiments: Effects**

The difference in the dependent variable that is due to changes in the independent variable Examples Drug X impairs short-term memory Visualization improves athletic performance Practice improves reading speed

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**Experiments Experimental group Control group Random assignment**

Strength Rigorous control, causal inferences Weakness Not all variables can be manipulated

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**Quasi-Experiments Like experiments but without random assignment**

Strength Real-world phenomena that cannot be studied in experiments Weakness Lack of control means limited causal inferences

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**Being a Critical Consumer**

Reliability Validity Face validity Content validity Criterion validity Construct validity

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**Bias and Expectation Response bias Sampling bias**

Experimenter expectancy effects Double-blind design

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Pseudopsychology Unsupported opinion pretending to be psychological science What makes a discipline a science? Is it the topic of study? Is it the method of study? Examples ESP Astrology

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**Statistics: Measuring Reality**

Benjamin Disraeli: “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” Be a critical statistics consumer; know the basics Two main types of statistics Descriptive Inferential

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**Descriptive Statistics**

Central tendency Mean Median Mode Normal distribution

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**Descriptive Statistics**

Variability Range Standard deviation Relative standing Percentile rank

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**Inferential Statistics**

Do patterns in measurement reflect true patterns or just chance variation? Statistical significance A measured relationship is not simply due to chance Expressed in terms of probability (p) Psychologists generally view a finding as “statistically significant” if it has no more than a 5% probability of occurring by chance

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**Inferential Statistics**

Sampling Population Sample Sampling error Meta-analysis Population Sample

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**Lying with Statistics Selective reporting**

Which statistics are reported and which are omitted?

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Lying with Graphs Shortening the Y axis

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Lying with Graphs Lengthening the Y axis

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**Lying with Graphs “Tricking” the visual system**

Using 3-D graphics to exaggerate size Changing width with height Plotting transformed data

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**Reading Research Reports**

QALMRI method Question Alternatives Logic of the study Method Results Inferences

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**Writing Research Papers**

Introduction Method Results Discussion

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Basic Concepts of Research Basis of scientific method Making observations in systematic way Follow strict rules of evidence Critical thinking about evidence.

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