Psychology Revision Checklist/outline

Outline of concepts/studies.

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  • Created on: 08-01-12 20:05
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Research Methods
Aims and hypotheses
o Aims: what we are interested in finding out.
o Hypothesis: Predictable/testable statement
Experimental/alternative Hypothesis: there will be a significant relationship,
one variable will affect another or there will be a significant difference
between two sets of data.
Null Hypothesis: the backup hypothesis; no significant relationship, a variable
will have no effect on another or no significant difference between two sets
of data.
Directional Hypothesis: predicts the specific direction of the results.
Non-directional hypothesis: just predicts a difference or that one variable
will affect another.
IV and DV
o Independent Variable
Variable that the experimenter manipulates.
o Dependent Variable
Variable the experiment measures; dependent on the IV.
o Seek to establish cause and affect relationships.
o There are two conditions:
Control condition; comparison.
Experimental condition; experimental group!
Range of techniques to gather data: e.g. observation, questionnaire etc.
What makes a true experiment?
Manipulation of an independent variable; the IV is directly
manipulated by the researcher to produce a change in the DV.
Randomisation; a true experiment requires that participants are
randomly allocated to conditions or that the participants take part in
each condition of the independent variable.
Control; efforts are made to control or hold constant all variables
other than the IV and DV in an experiment. These other variables are
known as extraneous variables (EVs) the aim of controlling EVs is to
minimise their possible impact on the results of the investigation.
Researchers should use standardised procedures as one of the ways
to control variables.

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Experimental Design
Advantages Disadvantages Remedy
Repeated measures Individual differences between The range of potential Order effects can be
design; each participant participants are removed as a uses is smaller than for the controlled by
will take part in both potential cofounding variable. independent groups counterbalancing or
conditions. Also, fewer participants are design. For example, it having a sufficient time
required, since data for all simply is not possible to delay between 2
conditions are collected from use two different reading conditions.…read more

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This is a variable other than the IV, which may account for the change in the DV.
Demand characteristics
o In research, and particularly psychology, demand characteristics refers to an
experimental artefact where participants form an interpretation of the experiment's
purpose and unconsciously change their behaviour accordingly.
Qualitative and quantitative data
o Quantitative data: numerical data ­ more objective and allows accurate conclusions.
o Qualitative data: data expressed in words ­ reflects opinions and impressions of the
researcher.…read more

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Measures of central tendency
Advantages Disadvantages
Mode ­ most frequently Represents a figure that is Doesn't tell us about other
occurring value present in set of data. figures.
Unaffected by extreme Might be bi-modal or
scores. multimodal ­ becomes
Useful if other measures less useful.
of central tendency are
Median ­ middle value It remains relatively Does not work on small
when arranged in unaffected by any sets of data.
numerical order. outlining values Ignores most scores.…read more

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Advantages: the top and bottom 25% are ignored which gets over the
problem of outlying values.
Standard Measures the average distance of each score away from the mean.
deviation This is done using formulae.
Advantage: most powerful measure of dispersion.
Disadvantage: less effective when there are outlying scores that skew
the data.
Deception Denies the right of informed To compensate for
consent, deceiving deception:
participants is failing to be Debrief to them after about
trustworthy.…read more

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Those who think the research
is acceptable will be selected.
Failure to protect from Risk of harm should be no Anticipating harm and
harm greater than that in ordinary stopping the study:
life. Some psychologists excuse
distress because it was
unexpected. But stop the
Using role play:
People are asked to act out
the role of participants in
problematical studies
involving deception or
psychological harm etc.
Use of questionnaires:
Ask how they would behave
in the situation.…read more

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STM and LTM ­ duration, capacity and encoding ­ multi store model.
o 3 main points
o Explain 2 points of support/two strengths and two points of criticism/two
weaknesses for the model.
Multi store Model
o Atkinson and Schifrin;
o Information initially received by the sensory store for a fraction of a second. If
information is not attended to or processed it is forgotten.…read more

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Phonological Loop ­ inner ear and inner voice; deals with spoken and
written material: used to remember phone numbers. Allows
acoustically encoded items to be stored for a brief period. The
articulatory suppression technique prevents repetition by saying
irrelevant words to the task to prevent the phonological loop from
retaining any more information.
Episodic Buffer ­ capable of integrating information from different
sources into chunks or episodes. Integrates material from LTM to
meet the requirements of the WMM.…read more

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Lab experiment ­ lacks ecological validity perhaps. Ethics ­
caused participants distress.
Yuille and Cutshall - Interviewed 13 witnesses of a real life gun crime, some
witnesses were closer to the event than others. Witnesses were
impressively accurate after several months. Those closest to the event
provided the most detail. Those most distressed provided the most detail.
Leading questions did not work.
o It was ecologically valid
o Can only be generalised in gun crime.
o Uncontrolled -Memories had time to rehearse.…read more

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Bartlett's reconstructive memory theory ­ schema
Cognitive Interview.
o What is involved
Recreate the context of the original incident ­ weather, smells, feeling at the
To report every detail ­ even if it does not have a bearing on the crime.
To recall event in different orders ­
To change perspectives ­ describe event from other people's views.
o Research
Geiselman et al. tested effectiveness by comparing it with standard police
interview techniques.…read more


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