research methods

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research methods

lab experiments 

+high levels of control so easiliy replicated 

+more conifident that the IV is directing the DV as it has high controls 

- said to lack ecological valdity 

- lack mundane realism as activites can be nothing similar to real life 

- pps may work out the aim of the experiment and act according to that rather than how they truly feel

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research methods

field experiments 

+take place in realistic settings so high ecological validity 

+ do not know they are taking part in a study little demand charatersitics 

- situational variables can be difficult to control so sometimes difficult to seeif  IV  is controlling DV 

- ethical issues as they do not know they are taking part 


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research methods


+ pps maybe more likely to reveal truthful answers in a questionaire 

+ large sample size can be used in a short space of time, which should increase representativeness and generalisabilty 

- pps may give socially desirable answers 

-if it has alot of closed questions then pps maybe forced into choosing answer that does not truly reflect their opinion.

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research methods


+ if an interview has alot of open questions then pps will reveal more of the reason why they behave in such a way.

- pps might be less liely to give truthful answers as they are actually face to face withthe interview and might not want to be judged 

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research methods


+ if the pps are unaware they are being observed should behave naturally 

+process is objective as behaviour is counted 

-if aware may show socially desirable behaviour 

- maybe difficult to replicate if it is naturalistic 

- ethics of unaware observation 

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research methods

case studies 

+ rich in detail data that has details as they are focusing on one individual 

+pps are usually studied as part of their everdyday life high ecological validity 

- difficult to genralise as case might be unique 

- an attachment could be formed which could reduce the objectivity of the study 

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research methods

independent groups

+ as pps only take part in one condition less likely to guess the aim of the experiment 

+ no order effect which can reduce valdity of findings 

- there maybe a problem with participant variables affecting the DV rather than the IV.

- more pps are required for this type of design compared to repeated measures 

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research methods

repeated measures

+ eliminates any effect of pps variables as all pps take part in all conditions therfore controlled 

+ few pps are needed 

- all pps take part in all conditions there is a chance of demand characterstics 

- order effects can affect the findings of the study e.g fatigue 

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research methods

matched pairs

+ pp variables are controlled for and eliminated as the pairs of pps have been matched 

- it can be a stduy in itself to find pps who are matched on all of the variables the psychologists has chosen. time consuming 

- there may be one or two pp variables that have are overlooked with the initial matching and these could affect the DV rather than IV. 

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