Research methods

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What is reliability?
Dependability or consistency - if a study is repeated with the same people it should produce the same results
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What is validity?
The extent to which a study does what it sets out to do - it is meauring what it is intending to measure
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What is does systematic mean?
Follows a set procedure
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What does objective mean?
Free from bias
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What 4 things are needed for a study to be credible?
1. reliability 2. validity 3. Systematic 4. Objective
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What do psychologists have to formulate before research can begin?
A research question
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Psychologists form a rweasrch question into an aim. What should the aim be?
Informative, concise and accurate and include all the variables being tested.
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What is correlation?
A relationship between two variables
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What is a hypthosis?
A general prediction about a theory.
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What should a hypothesis be like?
Clear and testable. Include info on all the experimental variables. Include all conditions of the experiment. It should also be operationalised.
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What does operationalised mean?
It means that it should include info on how the variable will be measured.
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What is the likert s scale?
Something that measures in intervals of opinions.
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What is a non directional hyptohesis (2 tailed)?
It states that there will be a difference between results, but not what the difference will be
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What is a directional hypothesis (1 tailed)?
States that there will be a difference between two results and predicts the difference
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What is the experimental method?
A method for establishing whether a causual relationship exsists between two or more variables. If the DV changes when the IV changes then there is assumed to be a casual relationship. Assuming you can rule out other influnces on the DV
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How can we control variables in a study? ( 3 main things)
1.Randomisation 2. Standardisation 3. Counterbalancing
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How can randomisation be used in a study to control extraneous variables?
By using a large random sample we can assume that many extraneous variables will not cause a problem to the study. It also prevents there from being any reasearcher bias
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What is standardisation and how can it be used in a study to control variables?
Standardisation means keeping everything the same across conditions meaning the only thing that can differ in the study is the IV
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What is counterbalancing and how can it be used in a study to prevent extraneous variables?
The order in which participants experience each condition is balanced across participants
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What is random allocation? Why is it beneficial to a study?
Participants must be randomly allocated to each condition of the experiment to remove any bias. It should then allow the reasearcher to say that any changes in the DV were caused by the IV rather than differences in participants in each group.
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What does IV, DV and CV?
1.IV - independant varibale = a variable that is deliberately changed in an experiment. 2.DV - dependant variable = a variable that changes as a result of a change of the IV 3.CV - control variable = factors that are kept the same in an experiement
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What is the fundamental ethical question of psychological research?
Does the end justify the means
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What is the abbriviation for ethical guidelines?
Can Do Can't Do Without Participants
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What are the ethical guidelines?
1. Consent 2. Deception 3. Confidentialtiy 4. Debriefing 5. Withdrawal from the investigation 6. Protection
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What is the defintion of experimental designs?
Different ways in which the testing of particiapnts can be organised in relation to the experimental conditions.
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What are the 3 experimental designs?
1. Independant groups design 2. Repeated measures design 3. Matched pairs design
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What is the independant groups design?
2 seperate groups of particiapnts experience 2 different conditions of the experiment and performance of the groups would be compared
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What is repeated measures design?
All participants experinece both conditions of the experiment. Each participant would first experinece Condtion A and at a later date Condition B
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What is matched pairs design?
Participants are matched on similar variables that are relevant to the experiment.
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of repeated measures design?
+ The participants do all the conditions so fewer particiapats are needed. - Participants characteristics may affect the results - Order effects such as fatigue and bordeom can affect the results
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of independant measures design?
+The sample is divided in groups and each group does one condition which means order effects do not occur - However this means more participants are needed - Participants characteristics may affect results
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of the matched pairs design?
+ Participant characteristics which could act as extraneous variable are kept constant between conditions - Matching participants is very time consuming - It is not possible to match all characteristics
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Why do we use sampling in a study?
To choose participants that are representative of a population so results and finding cen be generalised to the genral population so laws can be established
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What are the 4 types of sampling?
1. Random 2. Systematic 3. Stratified 4. Oppurtuinity
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What is random sampling?
Where every member of a population has the same chance to be chosen to do the study
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What is stratified sampling?
This involves classifying the population and then choosing a sample which consists of participants from each category from the same porportions as they are in the population
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What is systematic sampling?
Numbering the participants in your sampling frame and then pick participants at a set interval
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What is oppurtunity sampling?
Consists of taking the sample from people who are available at the time the study is carried out and fit the criteria they are looking for.
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For an experiment to be true it must have 3 key features:
1. The reseacher manipulates an IV to see if there is a change in DV 2. All other variables are controlled, held constant of limited 3. Participants are allocated randomly
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What are the 3 types of experiments?
1. Labatory 2. Field 3. Natural
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What are lab experiments?
It is an expeiment with a very high level of control using sophisticated and techinical equipemeny for accurate measures. The advantages: removal of extraneous varibale allowing there to be cause and effect. There is internal validity
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of lab experiments?
The advantages: removal of extraneous varibale allowing there to be cause and effect. There is internal validity. The disadvantages: Lacks ecological validity as labs are artificial. Can cause demand characteristics so limits validity and reliability
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What is internal validity?
When the manipulation of the IV directly causes a change in DV - no other factors affected or caused the change
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What are fiel experiments?
Experimental design but in a natural environment
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of field experiments?
Advantages: It is high in ecological validity & it can be appilied & genralised to real life. There are also no demand characteristics. Disadvantages: Potential extraneous variables. Low in internal validity so we cant establish cause & effect
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What are natural experiments?
The differnece in the IV are naturally occuring - the researcher doesn't control it so it is a quasi-experiment
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What is a quasi-experiment?
the participants are not randomly assigned to experimental groups.Quasi-experiments are employed when the researcher is interested in independent variables that cannot be randomly assigned. Usually this happens when the independent variable in quest
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of a natural/quasi experiment?
Advantages: High ecological validity, little sample bias, few demand characteristics as participants are unaware. Disadvantages: Little control so hard to establish cause and effect, cannot replicate, ethical problems
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What are non-experimental research methods? What is good about them?
Observational studies involve watching & recording people's behaviour in a natural environment. They reveal a different aspect of behaviour as observations can capture unexpected/spontaneous behaviour
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What are controlled observations? What are the positives and negatives of it?
Where variables in the environment are regulated by the researcher. High in internal validity but because participants are likely to know they are being studied it could cause demand characteristics
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What are naturalistic observations? What are the positives and negatives of it?
This is observing people in their natural environment. It is high in ecological validity. Lack of control leaves room for confounding variables meaning it may lack in internal validity
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What are the participant observations?
Where the observations made are by someone who is also participating themselves.
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What are non-participant observations?
Researchers do not become actively involved
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What are overt observations? What are the positives and negatives?
This is where the participants are aware they are being observed. - Demand characteristics + gives consent
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What are covert observations? What are the positives and negatives of this?
This is where the participants do not know they are being studied As knowing alters peoples behaviour - It is intrusive + people will behave naturally
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What are some issues with observations?
1. Lack of informed consent 2. Invasive 3. Time consuming 4. Careful preparation 5. Observers expectations may affect results which reduces validity
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What is interobserver reliability?
2 or more researchers are used in the study and the amount of agreement between them is calculated.
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What two things must there be in a structured observation?
A sampling procedure and behavioural categories
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What are the 2 types of sampling used in a structured observation?
Time - recording behaviours in a given time. Event - recording the number of times something happened
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What must behavioural categories be to be used in a structured observation?
1. operationalised 2. objective 3. cover all possible components 4. be mutually exclusive
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What are the positives and negatives of using correlations?
+ Allow predictions to be made + Allow us to inform more research - Never show causation - People often misinterpret correlations - Extraneous variable could also affect results
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What are some non-experimental methods?
Questionnaires, interviews, pilot studies, case studies and observations
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What is good and bad about questionnaires?
- Researcher cannot control variables so it is difficult to establish cause and effect + More ethical, natural and realistic
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What are the two types of questions? and what are the positives and negatives of them?
Open - allow participants to answer in their own words which is more difficult to analyse but there is a greater depth of info. Closed - yes/no which could cause researcher imposition however it is easier to score
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What are the 2 types of interviews and what are the advantages and disadvantages?
Structured - set questions +Focused data +Replicable +Allow comparisons to be made +Not time consuming -Subjective - Lack depth/validity Unstructured - Informal conversation +Depth/validity +more data -time consuming -unreplicable -training
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What are pilot studies?
A trial or small study done before the main one to clear up any problems with the: 1. Design 2. Instructions given to p's 3. Procedure 4. Way DV is measured.
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What are case studies?
An in depth study over time which is highly detailed data in a natural setting
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What is quantative data?
Numerical data
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What are the advantages of quantitative data?
+Allows for a broader study, involving a great number of subjects which enhances the generalisation of the results +Allow for more accurate results +Research can be replicate +personal bias can be avoided
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What are the disadvantages of quantitative data?
-Superficial dataset -results are limited as they provide no detailed narrative and provide less elaboration - researcher is often carried out in an artificial environment so has no external validity
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What is qualitative data?
Descriptive data
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What are the advantages of qualitative data?
+Provides depth and detail + If used alongside quantitative it can explain why something happened
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What are the disadvantages of qualitative data?
-Usually fewer people studied so it is harder to generalise - time consuming - difficult to make systematic comparisons - researcher needs to be skillful
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What are the 3 measures of central tendency?
Mean, median, mode
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of mean?
+ More sensitive than median because it makes use of all values in the dataset - It can be misinterpreted if there is an extreme value
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of median?
+ It is not affected by extreme scores so is more representative- It is less sensitive than mean as it does not take into account all values
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of mode?
+ It is useful when data is in categories - It is not as useful way of describing data when there are several modes
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What are measures of dispersion?
Looks at the spread of data and the range
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What is standard deviation?
(represented by sigma " ") It shows how much variation from the average exists.
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What does a low and high standard deviation show?
LOW - The data points tend to be very close to the mean HIGH - data points are spread out over a large range of values
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of standard deviation?
+ more precise measure which takes int account all values - may hide extreme values in datasets
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What are the advantages and disadvantages of the range?
+ provides you with direct info that is easy to calculate - it is affected by extreme values and does not take into account all values in the dataset
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What is a null hypothesis?
Predicts no significance or correlation. By having null hypothesis it removes researcher bias
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What is a type 1 error?
Reject the null hypothesis when true (probability shown by alpha)
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What is a type 2 error?
Accept null hypothesis when it's false (probability shown by beta)
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What are the tests for significance?
1. Chi square 2. Spearman's rank 3. Sign test 4. Mann whitney 5. Related t test 6.Unrelated t test 7. Wilcoxon 8. Pearson's product movement
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How do we chose which test to use? (3 questions to ask yourself)
1. Are you testing for difference or correlation? 2. Is your data nominal, ordinal or interval? 3. What is your experimental design (independent, repeated or association and correlation)
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What are the 3 different types of data?
Nominal, ordinal and interval
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What is nominal data?
A set of data is said to be nominal if the values belonging to it can be assigned a code in the form of a number. You can count but not order or measure it
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What is ordinal data?
Scale data created by researcher, you can count but not order or measure
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What is interval data?
Interval scales provide information about order, and also possess equal intervals. From the previous example, if we knew that the distance between 1 and 2 was the same as that between 7 and 8 on our scale
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What is the table for learning to know which test to use?
*
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What is the sign test?
A test of difference. Use it when we have a repeated measures design meaning that both sets of data came from one group of participants. Used in experiments to see if there is a difference between the two conditions.It can only be used w/ nominal dat
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It is important to peer review to remove bias. Who peer reviews?
An expert in the same field
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What is validity?

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The extent to which a study does what it sets out to do - it is meauring what it is intending to measure

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What is does systematic mean?

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Card 4

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What does objective mean?

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What 4 things are needed for a study to be credible?

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