AS Psychology Research Methods - Experimental Methods

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  • Created by: Imogen
  • Created on: 06-04-13 12:46

Lab Experiments

  • IV is delibrately manipulated
  • Artificial environment >> experimenter has full control
  • This means we can see whether our manipulation of the IV is Causing the effect seen on the DV >> we can draw conclusions about cause and effect when using lab exps


  • Milgram's study into obdience
  • Asch's study into majority influence 
  • Loftus' study into the effect of misleading info on EWTs


  • High control over Vs - majority of EVs can be controlled >> experimenter can establish C & E.    
  • Easy to replicate - lab exps tend to follow easily repeated procedures. This means exp can be replicated to discover if results are consistent thus increasing reliability
  • Lack eco val - 'artificial' environment >> Ps may not act naturally >> difficult to generalise to real life settings.
  • Demand characteristics - Occur when Ps try to make sense of a situation they are in and act accordingly >> may lack val

Field Experiments

  • IV is generally deliberately manipulated
  • Usual environment of the Ps (eg school, workplace) >> increases realism
  • Some control over EVs although less than a lab exp bc of the natural setting


  • Hofling's study into obedience to


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