Griffiths

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AIMS: 

  • to examine whether skill is involved in fruit machine gambling is actual or perceived?
  • does it vary between reg and non-reg gamblers?
  • are reg. more irrational in thinking?
  • whether thinking aloud affects time taken

METHOD:

  • Quasi experiment
  • IV (reg/non-reg) DV gambling ability etc..
  • Field experiment (consent gained from owners of gambling area)

PARTICIPANTS:

  • Non-reg - self select, posters in plymouth uni/local colleges, volunteers who played once a month or less (15 males and 15 females) - average age 25.3 years
  • Reg - opportunity sample selected by Griffiths from previous research + snowball sample (recruited by other gamblers) - 29 males, 1 female (representative of gamblers) - average age 21.6 years 

DESIGN:

  • independent groups (reg/non-reg) then a further 2 independent groups per category (thinking aloud/not thinking aloud)

PROCEDURE:

  • all tested individually, given £3, asked to try and stay on for minimum of 60 gambles
  • each gamble was 10p - asked to breakeven - allowed to keep any winnings
  • all asked to use fruit machines (3 reg refused and 7 moved to other machines during process)
  • Thinking aloud: told to say everything that went through mind, no censoring even if irrelevant/unstructured, speak clearly, try not to justify thoughts. 
  • TAPE RECORDINGS WERE ANALYSED BY GRIFFITHS WITHIN 24 HOURS
  • Recorded time spent, no. of gambles, amount won, play rate (gambles per minute) win rate (in terms of gambles and time)
  • Interviewed after on performance/skill

RESULTS:

  • reg. spent longer on machines and had higher play rate, seemed to win more BUT on average came away with no money -> suggests more skill because quicker HOWEVER if skill measured by end results…

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