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Research Methods in Psychology Welcome!. What we’ll do today Introduce the course Talk about psychological research.

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Presentation on theme: "Research Methods in Psychology Welcome!. What we’ll do today Introduce the course Talk about psychological research."— Presentation transcript:

1 Research Methods in Psychology Welcome!

2 What we’ll do today Introduce the course Talk about psychological research

3 Me! 5 th year clinical psychology Ph.D. student Protective Factors in Suicide Originally from outside Philadelphia

4 Reaching Me Mailbox: outside 2001 David King Hall Office Hours: Tuesdays 3:00-4: F David King Hall Course website:

5 Some housekeeping… Books

6 Attendance It’s important! 50 out of 400 total points are from attendance. Don’t just show up, join in!

7 What about grading? Lab counts 40% of total PSYC 301 grade PARTICIPATION In class assignments/peer review/discussion Can’t be made up if you miss lab Quizzes 10 points each OBSERVATIONAL STUDY PAPER 1 FINAL PROPOSAL ** Some of this might change. Only in your favor, though.

8 How do I get an A? Come to class Ask questions if you’re unsure Do the readings and assignments

9 What are you doing in return? Post Powerpoints online before class* Assignments and quizzes back in < 3 days. Better understanding of Psychological Research. Do the best you can do on exams and quizzes.

10 Switching Gears… What is psychological research?

11 The Basics About answering questions Whose? Yours! Research isn’t just in the lab…

12 Where do these questions come from ? Personal experience Newton A curious hunch Galileo Refuting past research Beck Building upon past research Everyone else

13 Descriptive Research Observation – discover relationships in the environment Correlation– do two things occur together? Survey – Directly asking about thoughts, beliefs, etc.

14 Experimental Research Manipulating one thing to (possibly) see change in something else. Not just for lab coats and lab rats! Variables

15 So what makes up research? Variables Something that changes or VARIES Types of variables Independent Variable (IV) Changed by the experimenter Dependent Variable (DV) DEPENDS on the independent variable Variables need to be MEASURED

16 Hypothesis: The Research Question Hypothesis: prediction Prediction of how the IV will affect the DV Prediction of how two or more variables relate A good hypothesis is TESTABLE!

17 Correlation How two things relate Can be positive or negative Positive: One goes up, the other goes up Negative: One goes up, the other goes down

18 IV and DV IV DV Affects You control Gets controlled Increased caffeine More alertness More studying Higher grades Amount of money Mike Shannahan makes More pissed off fans

19 Some Example Hypotheses IV affects DV: Petting a puppy will make you happier IV: Petting a puppy DV: Happiness Testable? Yes!

20 Some Example Hypotheses Correlation: Warmer temperatures and increased ice cream sales correlate Variables: Temperature and ice cream sales Direction: Positive Testable? Yes! Warmer temperatures and class attendance correlate Variables: Temperature and class attendance Direction: Negative Testable? Yes!

21 Operational Definitions Let’s go back to that puppy… Petting a puppy will make people happier How much caffeine? Leads to how much happiness? 3? 4? We need an OPERATIONAL DEFINITION

22 Operational Definition Defines what the concept is Happiness How were going to measure to concept Self-report measure Psychophysiological measure Could be anything!

23 Observational Research Primary role: description What are we describing? Behavior! How do we do this? Observation! Systematic, objective Careful record keeping. Full and complete picture.

24 Observational Research Primary goal: Generalize an observation Small group of people (sample) must be able to represent the whole (population) We can’t study the entire world! Validity- how well your study supports the results Does your study accurately support how you tell your story?

25 Two Types of Observational Research Naturalistic Observation In the natural setting, not the lab! The researcher is the “passive observer” Many examples: People watching, etc…

26 Two Types of Observational Research Intervention Two types Overt: The subject knows you’re watching them Covert: The subject doesn’t know you’re watching them. Researchers intervene and attempt to control the environment in some way. Examples: structured observation, field study.

27 Examples Asch’s Conformity Study Piaget Doesn’t always go right: Hawthorne Effect

28 How do we do observational research? Operational definition WHAT you’re going to study and HOW you’re going to measure it. How would you define… Friendliness on campus? Affectionate behavior in pubic?

29 How do we do observational studies? How to measure Qualitative Evaluation of the QUALITIES Audio tapes, recording behavior, etc. Quantitative Measurements, numbers Frequency of a certain behavior, etc.


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