Types of Experiments

These cards are the basic over view of the different types of research, part of the AQA A psychology course (AS)

HideShow resource information

Quantitative Methods

Research methods which produce numerical data. They typically use a lot of people or animals and produce little data from each of them. Using these methods allows us to generalise the findings. These usually include surveys, questionnaires and experiments.

1 of 8

Qualitative Methods

Research methods which produce longer and more detailed answers that use fewer people or animals, but study them in greater depth, focusing on detailed and descriptive data. No numerical data is produced. These usually include interviews, observations and case studies.

2 of 8

Laboratory Experiments

These are experiments which manipulate and examine the effect of the independent variable on the dependant variable in very controlled and therefore artificial conditions. This means that many of the extraneous or confounding variables are controlled.

3 of 8

Advantages + Disadvantages of Laboratory Experimen

Advantages

  • There is a tight control over variables and therefore a casual relationship (cause and effect) can be determined.
  • Effects of possible confounding variables are minimised and so they are high in internal validity
  • They are easy to replicate and are therefore high in reliability. 

Disadvantages

  • They are artificial and therefore low in ecological validity.
  • Experimenter bias is likely to occur.
  • Demand characteristics are likely to occur.
4 of 8

Field Experiments

These are experiments which manipulate and examine the effect of the independent variable on the dependent variable in natural settings (surroundings) where people are unaware of that they are taking part in a study.

5 of 8

Advantages + Disadvantages of Field Experiments

Advantages

  • High in ecological validity as they are conducted in natural setting.
  • There are less demand characteristics as the participants are unaware that they are taking part in a study.
  • There is a control over the variables so therefore a cause and effect can be determined. 

Disadvantages

  • Low in reliability because there will never be the same situation again.
  • Low in internal validity because it is hard to actually measure what you intended to measure as participants unaware they are taking part in a study.
  • Hard to set up, more expensive and time consuming.
  • Unethical, lack of fully informed consent, (FIC)
6 of 8

Natural Experiments

These are experiments in which the independent variable does not directly manipulated by the experimenter and the participants are randomly allocated into the conditions. It is know as a 'quasi-experiment' because it is not really possible to manipulate the variables concerned. 

7 of 8

Advantages + Disadvantages of Natural Experiments

Advantages

  • Low in demand characteristics because the participants are unaware of being in the study.
  • High in ecological validity because it is based on real life situations.
  • Natural experiments enable psychologists the study real problems where you cannot manipulate the variables or participants.

Disadvantages

  • Low in reliability because it is random, not controlled and cannot be repeated or created again.
  • Low in internal validity because you cannot control the independent variable, so you do not know what the cause and effect is.
  • Unethical, lack of fully informed consent, (FIC)
8 of 8

Comments

No comments have yet been made

Similar Psychology resources:

See all Psychology resources »See all resources »