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Psychology notes ­ Research Methods
Aim ­ A clear precise statement of the purpose of the study:
* Why the research is taking place
* Should include what is being investigated and what the research wants to achieve

Operationalisation ­ defining the variables stated in the aim in a way…

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Standardised instructions ­ exactly the same instructions are given to all participants

High internal validity ­ all EVs were successfully controlled, the study measured what it
intended to measure

Low internal validity ­ the EVs weren't successfully controlled, didn't actually measure what
they wanted to measure

External validity ­ can…

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Sample made up of people who are available and willing to take part at the time of the
study.


+ Quick, convenient and economical. Doesn't require the level of planning and preparation
that is associated with other sampling methods, this leads to less delays in the research and
less money…

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* May also cause participants to become distrustful of psychological research on the
future.
* Can be dealt with by debriefing participants (explaining fully the aim of the study ­
consent can then be obtained).

Informed consent ­ participants should be fully aware of the purpose and nature of the…

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+ High control of variables, all extraneous variables can be controlled. This leads to a more
accurate measurement of the IV.
+ Lab experiments are easy to replicate because of the control over variables. This means
that the study can easily be tested for reliability.


- High demand characteristics, in…

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+ Low demand characteristics, participants are usually unaware they are being tested so are
less likely to change their behaviour. This means that the results reflect relief as the
participants are responding to the IV and not demand characteristics.


- Low control of variables, natural experiments don't have the control…

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may affect their behaviour. This reduces
study's internal validity.


Matched pairs design ­ a different set of participants are used in each condition, however
participants are matched on particular characteristics.

Advantages Disadvantages
*Low order effects as participants only take *Although participants are matched on certain
part in one condition so…

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Correlation co-efficient ­ A numerical measure of the strength and direction of the
relationship between two variables.

The correlation co-efficient varies between -1 and +1. -1 represents a perfect negative
correlation and +1 represents a perfect positive correlation, 0 represents no correlation.




0.2 ­ weak positive correlation
0.4 ­ moderately…

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* Undisclosed ­ participants are unaware of being observed, therefore they can't give their full
consent. These types of observations are limited to public places. They are also seen as
unethical.

Non participant:
Involves the researcher observing the behaviour from a distance, they do not become actively
involved in the…

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Qualitative data ­ data with words or sentences to explain what is happening

Quantitative data ­ data in the form of numbers, this can be collected by using a behaviour
schedule where you count the number of times a behaviour occurs in a set time scale.
-
Inter-rater reliability ­…

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