Anomalistic Psychology (Part 5)

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  • Created by: Natalie
  • Created on: 09-06-14 20:12
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  • Anomalistic Psychology (5)
    • Psychic Mediumship
      • Sensitivity to cues
        • Many clues to help a talented medium produce accurate information (cold reading)
        • Even without seeing their 'sitter' they can pick up information from their tone of voice and replies to previous statements
      • The Barnum effect
        • Cold reader starts with general statement which elicit responses from the sitter
        • Responses can be used in later conversation to convince listener of psychic abilities
      • Fraud
        • Mediums may hire an accomplice to visit a regular sitter.
      • Schwartz et al. (2001)
        • Used undergraduates to determine accuracy of cold readings
        • Each considered how accurately each statement reflected their own feelings
      • Rock and Beischel (2008)
        • Tested belief that mediums can report accurate information about dead people without cues
        • 2 conditions - 1; loved one is alive. 2; loved one is dead
        • 6 mediums spoke on the phone to a sitter
        • Mediums found significant differences in information retrieved from 2 conditions
      • Willingness to be deceived
        • Roe (1996)
          • Reported many sitters are aware mediums are using general statements but remain convinced
            • Supported by Wiseman et al.'s (2003) seance
              • P's knew it was fake but believers had a tendency to be taken in by events
      • O'Keefe and Wiseman (2005)
        • Arranged 5 mediums to give readings for 5 sitters
        • Each sitter read all of the 25 readings given and rated the personal relevance for each statement
        • Ratings were the lowest for the statements written for them
        • Well-controlled study - showed no evidence of mediumship
      • Schwartz et al. (2001)
        • Tested 5 mediums
        • 2 women sitters, could only answer yes or no
        • Sitters judged the accuracy of the mediums' statements as 83% and 77%
        • Undergraduates were shown statements with photos of the sitters, 36% guessed correctly
    • Psychic Healing
      • Therapeutic Touch (TT)
        • Wirth (1990)
          • Studied patients with wounds who were treated either with TT or nothing
          • Patients weren't aware of what treatment they were receiving - eliminates placebo effect
          • Patients treated with TT healed faster
          • Failed to replicate own research on wound healing
          • Has been convicted of fraud with a 5 year prison sentence
        • Rosa et al. (1998)
          • Tested 21 TT practitioners
          • Each sat on one side of a screen and placed their hands through 2 holes in it
          • The experimenter placed her hand about 4 inches above the practitioners
          • Only correct 44% of the time - less than chance
          • Created by a 9 year old
          • TT supporters claim the study is invalid because the experimenter was not ill
        • Long et al. (1999)
          • Glickman and Graceley
            • Replicated the study eliminating body heat and found results at chance level
              • Could be due to body heat
          • Replicated Rosa et al's study using normal people
            • Found when experimenter's hand was only 3 inches away the results were better than chance
              • Could be due to body heat
      • Placebo effect
        • Lyvers et al. (2006)
          • Suggest belief in psychic healing may explain some of its success
          • Belief creates positive expectations
        • Benson et al. (2006)
          • Studied patients recovering from heart surgery
          • One group were control, other 2 were told prayers were being said for them - only 1 group had prayers said for them, other group were placebo group
          • Those who suffered more complications were those who had been prayed for - doesn't support placebo effect
        • Success could be due to spontaneous or temporary recover
      • The effects of prayer
        • Cha et al. (2001)
          • Looked at effect of prayer on infertile women
          • Researchers arranged for Christian strangers to pray for some women
          • As far as they knew, no one prayed for the other women and prayed for women were 2x likely to get pregnant
          • Conducted her study with Wirth, and Cha has been accused of plagiarism in another journal

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