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Laboratory Experiment
Researchers interested in memory and cognitive processes use
this method carried out in a lab.
Strengths Weaknesses
·Can be easily replicated by other ·Loss of validity ­ experiment is
researchers ­ this will determine artificial and different to real life
results and make the findings more situation
reliable and accurate
·Ecological Validity ­ the extent to
·Sophisticated measuring & which the results may be generalised
recording equipment ­ these will help to settings other than the one in
the researcher to obtain very which the research took place
accurate results
·Demand Characteristics ­
·Control over variables participants try to make sense of
the research situation to find
themselves in and adjust their
behaviour accordingly
Field Experiment
Experimental investigations carried out in the natural
environment of those being studied. Widely used when
studying non-human animals.
Strengths Weaknesses
·Improved ecological validity ­ ·Establishing controls ­ more difficult
artificiality of the lab environment is to replicate precisely
·Generalising to other situations
·Reduction of demand
characteristics ­ participants may be ·Costly
less conscious that they are taking
part in a study ·Use of technical equipment ­
difficult to use sophisticated
equipment…read more

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Natural Experiment
Researchers make use of naturally occurring differences in
the independent variable. Researcher does not directly
control the independent variable.
Strengths Weaknesses
·Reductions of demand ·Loss of control ­ researcher does
characteristics - participants may be not directly control the independent
less conscious that they are taking variable or assign the participants to
part in a study experimental conditions
·Lack of direct intervention ­ ·Likelihood of desired behaviour
experimenter does not intervene being displayed
directly in the research situation)
Correlational Analysis
Statistical technique that measures the relationship between
two variables
Strengths Weaknesses
·Measuring the strength of ·Issue of causality
·Measurement of non-linear
·Value to exploratory research relationships…read more

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Can be used in a wide range of research situations. Conducted
by post, telephone or via the internet
Strengths Weaknesses
·Simplicity ·Wording of question can be
·Speed & cost
·Leading questions may influence the
·Less influence on interpersonal response given
·Different interpretations of
language used
Behaviour is observed and recorded and there is usually no
deliberate manipulation of variables
Strengths Weaknesses
·Value as a preliminary research ·Control ­ level of control is poor in
tool ­ useful for studying unknown or all observations
little-known behaviours
·Replication is difficult
·Observer effect - the impact of
observing a process while it is running
·Ecological validity - the extent to
which the results may be generalised
to settings other than the one in
which the research took place
·Costs…read more

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Case Study
Involves the in-depth study over a time of a `case'. Usually
undertaken within a real life context.
Strengths Weaknesses
·Rich and interesting data ­ high ·Low reliability of much case study
degree of realism research
·Challenging existing theory ·Findings may be subjective
·Selecting large amount of data
Explain one advantage of using a laboratory experiment rather than
using a natural experiment
A laboratory experiment would be better to use than a field experiment because the
results can be easily replicated by other researchers, making the findings more
reliable. Also, there is more sophisticated equipment in a lab experiment so the
results will be more precise.
What is the difference between a closed and open questionnaire
when using a questionnaire or an interview method?
For a closed question, the researcher determines the range of possible answers
therefore the data collected is more easy to analyse, whereas, an open question is
where the researcher does not restrict the range of available answers so a large
amount of data is collected which is not easy to analyse.…read more


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