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Chapter 2: Where to Start Appendix A: Writing Research Reports.

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1 Chapter 2: Where to Start Appendix A: Writing Research Reports

2 Hypotheses and Predictions [p17]  Informal hypotheses/predictions - Simply questions about behavior or a guess at what elicits behavior  Formal hypotheses - Formulated on the basis of past research findings and theoretical considerations - Stated in very specific and formal terms - Confirmed or unconfirmed by the results

3 Theory A logically organized set of propositions (claims, statements, assertions) that serves to: *define events (concepts), *describe relationships among events *explain the occurrence of events [Ch2, p20]


5 Sources of Ideas [pp18-22]  Common sense  Observation of the world around us  Theories  Past research

6 Scholarly Journal Articles [p23]  The nature of journals Researcher sends written report to a professional journal Editor solicits reviews from other peer scientists Each journal has limited space Editor decides whether to accept the research report for publication Accepted research reports are published about one year later

7 Literature Review: Scholarly Psychology Journals Psychological Bulletin Annual Review of Psychology Journal of Environmental Psychology Others [pp24-25, Table 2.1]

8 Search Strategies: Shatford Library Databases Proquest Wilson Web--Science Full Text PsycInfo Others

9 Yahoo, Google (Scholar), and Alta Vista Critically evaluate the quality of the information you find Record the exact location of any Websites you will be using in your research Literature Review: Internet Searches [p32]

10 Communicating the Results of a Research Study research conference psychology research journal

11 Writing Research Reports: APA Format Sixth edition of the Publication Manual (2009) of the American Psychological Association (APA). [p283]

12 Guidelines for Effective Writing Know Your Audience Identify Your Purpose Write Clearly Be concise Be precise Follow grammatical rules Avoid biased language Write an interesting report

13 Structure of a Research Report [p298] A research report consists of the following sections (the main text is in bold):  Title Page■ References  Abstract■ Appendixes  Introduction■ Author Note  Method■ Footnotes  Results■ Tables  Discussion■ Figure caption page ■ Figures

14 Title page [pp288-290] title of the research authors’ names where the research was done running head page header

15 Abstract [p290] One-paragraph summary 100-120 words Include: Problem under investigation Research methods used Main findings Conclusions and implications Write the Abstract last!

16 Introduction [pp290-291] Three primary objectives: introduce the problem summarize briefly the relevant background literature describe the hypothesis and research design

17 Method [pp291-292] Describes how the study was conducted Provides enough detail for replication 3 common subsections of the Method section (Subsections depend on the complexity of the design) : Participants Design (optional) Materials (or Apparatus) Procedure

18 Method [p292] (continued) Information to include in Participants subsection Procedures for recruiting and compensation Major demographic characteristics (e.g., gender, age, race/ethnicity) Total number of participants Number of participants in each condition Describe any attrition

19 Method [p292] (continued) Information to include in Materials/Apparatus subsection Describe materials critical to the design and implementation of the study variables

20 Method [p292] (continued) Information to include in Procedure subsection Describe what happened from the beginning to the end of the sessions in which you tested your participants Include enough detail to allow for replication

21 Results [pp292-294] Findings are presented in three ways 1. Narrative form 2. Statistical language 3. Tables or graphs (figures) Answers the questions raised in the introduction Sticks to the facts

22 Discussion [p295] What were the essential findings? Do the findings support the hypothesis? If yes, provide all possible explanations If no, suggest potential reasons for this How are results similar to or different from previous research? Explain how the results compare with past results Limitations or problems in the research? Present methodological weaknesses and/or strengths Offer specific ideas for additional research based on the findings Include suggestions for possible practical applications

23 References [p295] Contains citation information for each source cited in the research manuscript References are listed in alphabetical order according to the last name of the first author of each source Sample on pp329-332

24 Appendixes [pp295-296] Sometimes used to provide a verbatim copy of instructions to participants or a copy of particular materials used in a research study

25 Author Note [p296] Sources of financial support for the research Acknowledgment of people who contributed to the research project Contact information should an interested reader desire more information The name and departmental affiliation of each author.

26 Footnotes [p296] Rare in research manuscripts Two types: Copyright permission footnotes Content footnotes Footnotes appear on a separate page near the end of the manuscript

27 Tables and Figures [pp296-297] Tables or figures cited in the text (results section) are attached at the end of the research manuscript Place only one table or figure on a page Figures require a separate “Figure Captions” page preceding the figures

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