Unit 1 Evaluation Notes

Strengths and Weaknesses

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  • Created on: 06-06-11 16:06
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Evaluation of Studies and Theories- Social/Cognitive Psychology
Strengths Weaknesses
The study was a lab experiment, so was Participants were seriously deceived,
tightly controlled. many were caused a great deal of
The study acts as a warning about society stress- the ethical issues were too great.
about its potential to be evil, so it is Sample wasn't representative
useful. (volunteer)
Milgrams theories release people from The study has ethnocentric and
responsibility for their actions. andocentric biases as the participants
Milgrams study challenges the existing were American and male.
view of human nature, and it has high The study lacks ecological validity as it
political impact. was carried out in a lab, and wasn't a
Easy to replicate and get same results, normal situation for the participants.
has reliability.
Strengths Weaknesses
The study has ecological validity as the The participants were deceived, and
nurses were working in their natural didn't give informed consent to take
environment. part.
Have implications to nurse training. Has ethnocentric bias as it was done in
Hofling has made it aware hoe obedient America.
nurses are, can be applied to real life. Was carried out in 1966 and research
may not be true of nurses today.
Many extraneous variables not
controlled, the nurses may have been
Hard to replicate.
Meeus and Raaijmakers
Strengths Weaknesses
Participants were fully debriefed and Many participants were caused distress
given a follow up questionnaire to by their involvement, and they found the
ensure they were okay. treatment very unfair.
The findings can help to explain real life Participants were deceived as they had
atrocities like genocide and the war in believed that the stooges were real
Iraq. applicants.
In the debriefing, there was no obvious It was volunteer sample, and may not be
sign of serious affects on the participants representative, as the participants may
Participants were relieved to find out have been motivated and performed
they had not caused anybody any sort of better.

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Strengths Weaknesses
Vulnerable to extraneous variables, as it Participants were unaware of
was not carefully controlled. participation in the experiment, so
Less possibility of demand characteristics hadn't given informed consent, and
as boys were unaware of participation. were not given the right to withdraw.
Sherif had some control over variables, High in ecological validity, as a summer
as he was able to introduce competition. camp is a natural environment, and
activities were carried out like would
have been carried out at camp anyway.…read more

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The controls make the experiment more your head you are more likely to
replicable (reliable). remember it.
Godden and Baddeley
Strengths Weaknesses
Research took place in a real life Procedure of learning a list of words is
situation, which is more ecologically valid not an everyday task so lacks mundane
than a lab. realism.
Has application in real life as you can Lack of control over some of the
teach students to imagine learning procedure, like equipment, which could
context when recalling information.…read more

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Strengths Weaknesses
Explains why people who have suffered It is ethically wrong to traumatise
trauma block it out. participants to find out if repression
Evidence to suggest it exists, Walker- via exists.
diary studies, happy memories were The unconscious mind is very hard to
recalled much clearer than unhappy study.
memories. Evidence to go against it. Bernsten saw
Also Koehler saw that words seen as that participants recalled shocking
stressful to participants were poorly memories in more detail than
recalled. emotionally neutral ones.…read more


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