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A2 Psychology OCR G544
Research methods- Definitions
Experimental method- There are three main types towards the method; Lab, Field and Quasi
experiments. Most commonly have an IV and DV
Lab experiments- Normally conducted in a lab, have high control over variables. Typically low
ecological validity (EV) as not realistic (Loftus and Palmer)
Field experiments- in a natural and realistic environment, has higher ecological validity but
less control over variables which may affect validity and reliability (Piliavin)
Quasi experiment- an experiment where the independent variable is natural and cannot be
manipulated; for example if the participants have autism (Baron-Cohen)
Independent measures design- two groups of participants for two different Independent
variables in an experiment (one group does one experiment with a certain independent
variable, another group does same experiment but with different IV)
Repeated measures design- one group of participants does the same experiment twice but
the IV is different, problem with this is the participants may work out the aim of the
Matched pairs design- two separate groups but matched together based on a similar
characteristic (age or gender) problem is if one of the pairs leaves, the other has to as well.
When writing procedure unless the exam asks you too, try and avoid matched pairs as quite
difficult to explain.
Independent variable- the variable in your experiment that you manipulate
Dependent variable- This is the variable you measure which is affected by what the IV is.
Extraneous and confounding variables- Extraneous variables are variables other than the IV
that may affect your results, confounding variables is a variable that actually does affect your
Alternate Hypothesis- where you state what will happen and there are two types of
alternate hypothesis; one tailed and two tailed.
One tailed hypothesis- you state a change but also the direction (increase or decrease)
Two tailed hypothesis- you state a change but no direction of that change.
Null hypothesis- must always have a null hypothesis with an alternate hypothesis; here you
state that there will be no change.
Self-report method- A report on your beliefs, opinions, feelings and thoughts. Two types of
the self-report method; Interviews and Questionnaires.
Interviews- more personal questions, mixture of structured (questions that are planned) and
unstructured ( more like a chat, spontaneous)
Questionnaires- unlike an interview it's not personal as goes out to a lot of people, can be
sent out via letter, email or social media such as twitter.
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Open question- a question which can't be answered with a simple yes/no. The participant has
to give a detailed response `what do you like about A2 Psychology' is an example of an open
Closed question- short answer with little detail, normally yes/no answer `Do you like A2
Psychology Yes or No.…read more