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Research methods
Psychology…read more

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Laboratory Experiments
Conducting research in a controlled environment.
The variables can be controlled, manipulated and
randomized. This means these experiments have
high reliability. However they have low validity as
they are done in an artificial environment so would
not measure real life behaviour. It is also unethical
as deception is often used.…read more

Slide 3

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Field Experiments
Behaviour is measured in a natural environment such as a
school, the street or on a train. The dependent variable is still
manipulated so the effect can be measured. This has
ecological validity as they are less artificial and relate to real
life better. It also prevents demand characteristics of
participants behaviour changing because they know they are
being watched. However there is less control over
confounding variables and there are ethical issues as
participants may be unaware they are being studied.…read more

Slide 4

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Natural Experiments
This measures variables that are not directly manipulated by
the experiment such as gender or age. This is ethical as
variables that are impossible to manipulate can be studied
such as seeing if television makes a person more aggressive.
However there is no participant allocation as the groups have
already been decided. Also the events you want to study may
be rare so its likely that there is going to be a small sample
size. Also variables cannot be controlled, so it lacks validity.…read more

Slide 5

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Observing people in their natural environment. This
has high ecological validity however it is unethical as
people are unaware they are being watched also
extraneous variables cannot be controlled and there
may be observer bias as the person may focus on
and record behaviour they want to see.…read more

Slide 6

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Participant / non participant
If the researcher is a participant of the
group they gain an understanding of
the group and have a better
understanding of their behaviour
however its harder to make
observations when part of the group
If the researcher is a non participant
they can remain objective throughout
the study however they may be spotted
more easily…read more

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