Key Terms

HideShow resource information
  • Created by: Beth_Gee
  • Created on: 12-05-14 10:30

MADE BY Patrycja, All credit to Patrycaja.


Aims: the purpose of a research study.

Buffers: term used to refer to aspects of situations that protect people from having to confront the results of their actions.

Case Study: detailed study of an individual, event or group.

Conditioning: when one response is made dependent on another.

Clinical Interviews: All interviewees are asked the same questions, but the choice of follow-up questions on the answers given. The researcher is given the flexibility to ask questions in various ways, to explore interesting or unexpected answers as they see fit.

Confidentiality: the requirement for ethical research that information provided by participants in research is not made available to other people.

Confounding Variable: variables that are mistakenly changed or allowed to vary along with the IV which then affects the DV.

Control Group: group of participants who receive no treatment and act as a comparison to the experimental group to study any effects of the treatment.

Controlled Variables:  variables which are held constant or are controlled.

Counterbalancing: used with repeated measures design to overcome the problems of practice and order effects and involves ensuring that each condition is equally likely to be used first and second by participants.

Constant Error: any unwanted variable that has a systematically distinct effect on the dependent variable in different conditions.

Correlational Analysis: testing a hypothesis using an association that is found between two variables.

Cause and Effect:


Double Blind: a procedure where neither the participant nor the experimenter knows the precise aims of the study. This reduces experimenter effects.

Dependant Variable: Output of the experiment, an aspect of the participant’s behaviour this can be measured in the study.

Demand Characteristics: features of an experiment that help participants work out what is expected of them, and lead them to behave in certain predictable ways.

Debriefing: attempts by the experimenter at the end of a study to provide detailed information for the participants about the study and to reduce any distress that they might have felt.

Deception: withholding information or misleading research participants. (Lying)

Directional (one-tailed) hypothesis: a prediction that there will be a difference or correlation between two variables and a statement of the direction of the difference.

Extraneous Variable: variables which can affect the behaviour of participants such as age, gender, intelligence level, type of task, personality etc.

External Validity: the extent to which the findings of an experiment/study can be applied to every day situations.

Ecological Validity: Ecological Validity is the degree to which the behaviors observed and recorded in a study reflect the behaviors that actually occur in natural settings. In addition, ecological validity is associated with "generalization". Essentially this is the extent to which findings can be generalized to the "real world"

Ethical Issues: Questions’ concerning what is wrong and right.

Field Experiment: a study in


No comments have yet been made

Similar Psychology resources:

See all Psychology resources »See all Research methods and techniques resources »