Psych Research Methods - Midterm

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Research In Psychology
Chapters 1-6
Midterm review terms for Langholtz
updated 7 years ago by lifesurfeit
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1

Ways of Knowing (proposed by Peirce)

Authority, use of reason, and experience

2

Authority

Way of knowing in which a person develops a belief by agreeing with someone perceived to be an expert

3

A priori

Way of knowing in which a person develops a belief by reasoning and reaching agreement with others who are convinced of the merits of the reasoned argument

4

Empiricism

Way of knowing that relies on direct observation or experience

5

Belief perseverance

Unwillingness to consider any evidence that contradicts a strongly held view (a social cognition bias studied by Lepper, Ross & Lau)

6

Confirmation bias

Events that confirm a strongly held belief are more readily perceived and remembered; disconfirming events are ignored or forgotten (social cognition bias studied by Wason & Johnson-Laird)

7

Availability heuristic

Vivid or memorable events lead people to overestimate the frequency of occurrence of these events(social cognition bias studied by Tversky & Kahneman)

8

Science as a way of knowing

Science (1) assumes determinism, (2) makes systematic observations, produces public knowledge, (3) produces data-based conclusions, (4) produces tentative conclusions, (5) asks answerable questions, and (6) develops theories that can be disproven.

9

Determinism

An assumption made by scientists that all events have causes

10

Discoverability

An assumption made by scientists that the causes of events can be discovered by applying scientific methods

11

Statistical determinism

An assumption made by research psychologists that behavioral events can be predicted with a probability greater than chance

12

Objectivity

Said to exist when observations can be verified by more than one observer

13

Introspection

Method used in the early years of psychological science in which an individual would complete some task and then describe the events occurring in consciousness while performing the task

14

Data-driven

Belief of research psychologists that conclusions about behavior should be supported by data collected scientifically

15

Empirical questions

A question that can be answered by making objective observations

16

Hypothesis

An educated guess about a relationship between variables that is then tested empirically

17

Theory

A set of statements that summarizes and organizes existing information about some phenomenon, provides an explanation for the phenomenon, and serves as a basis for making predictions to be tested empirically

18

Falsification

Research strategy advocated by Popper that emphasizes putting theories to the test by trying to disprove or falsify them

19

Pseudoscience

A field of inquiry that attempts to associate with true science, relies exclusively on anecdotal evidence, and is deliberately too vague to be adequately tested.

20

Anecdotal evidence

Evidence form a single case that illustrates a phenomenon; when relied on exclusively, as in pseudoscience, faulty conclusions can be drawn

21

Effort justification

After expending a large amount of time or effort to obtain some goal, people giving the effort feel pressured to convince themselves that the effort was worthwhile, even if the resulting outcome is less positive than originally thought

22

Description

A goal of psychological science in which behaviors are accurately classified or sequences of environmental stimuli and behavioral events are accurately listed

23

Laws

Regular, predictable relationships between events

24

Predictions

A goal of psychological science in which statements about the future occurrence of some behavioral event are made, usually with some probability

25

Explanation

A goal of science in which the causes of events are sought

26

Application

A goal of science in which basic principles discovered through scientific methods are applied in order to solve problems

27

Ethics

A set of principles prescribing behaviors that are morally correct

28

Critical incidents

Method, used by ethics committees, that surveys psychologists and asks for examples of unethical behavior by psychologists

29

Five general principles of the APA Code of Ethics

(1) Beneficience and Non-Malfeasance
(2) Fidelity and Responsibility
(3) Integrity
(4) Justice
(5) Respect for Peoples' Rights and Dignity

30

Research participants

Any person who takes part in and contributes data to a research study in psychology

31

Subject

Can refer to human or animal research participant

32

International Review Board (IRB)

University committee responsible for evaluating whether research proposals provide adequate protection of the rights of participants; must exist for any college or university receiving federal funds for research

33

Risk

In the ethical decision making that goes into the planning of a study, refers to the chance that participating in research would have greater costs than benefits to the participant

34

Informed consent

The idea that persons should be given sufficient information about a study to make their decision to participate as a research subject an informed and voluntary one

35

Deception

A research strategy in which participants are not told all the details of an experiment at its outset; used for the purpose of avoiding demand characteristics

36

Assent

To give assent is to say 'yes;' in the SRCD code of ethics for research with children, refers to the willingness on the part of the child to participate in the study

37

Debriefing

A postexperimental session in which the experimenter explains the study's purpose, reduces any discomfort felt by participants, and answers any questions posed by participants

38

Leakage

A tendency for people who have participated in a research study to inform future participants about the true purpose of the study

39

Dehoaxing

The portion of debriefing in which the true purpose of the study is explained to participants

40

Desensitizing

The portion of debriefing in which the experimenter tries to reduce any distress felt by participants as a result of their research experience

41

Confidentiality

In research ethics, an agreement on the part of the research not to divulge the identity of those participating in a research study

42

Plagiarism

Deliberately taking the ideas of someone and claiming them as one's own

43

Falsifying data

Manufacturing or altering data to bring about a desired result

44

Basic research

Research with the goal of describing, predicting, and explaining fundamental principles of behavior

45

Applied research

Research with the goal of trying to solve some immediate real-life problem

46

Laboratory research

Research that occurs within the controlled confines of the scientific laboratory

47

Field research

Research that occurs in any location other than a scientific laboratory

48

Mundane realism

Refers to how closely the experiment mirrors real-life experiences; considered to be less important than experimental realism

49

Experimental realism

Refers to how deeply involved the participants become in the experiment; considered to be more important than mundane realism

50

Experimental confederate

An individual who appears to be either another subject in an experiment, but is in fact a part of the experiment and in the employ of the experimenter

51

Quantitative research

A category of research activity in which results are presented as numbers, typically in the form of descriptive and inferential statistics

52

Qualitative research

A category of research activity characterized by a narrative analysis of information collected in a study; can include case studies, observational research, interview research

53

Empirical question

A question that can be answered by making objective observation

54

Operationism

Philosophy of science approach that held that all scientific concepts should be defined in terms of a set of operations to be performed (proposed by Bridgeman)

55

Operational definitions

A definition of a concept or variable in terms of precisely described operations, measures, or procedures

56

Converging operations

Occurs when the results of several studies, ech defining its terms with slightly different operational definitions, nonetheless converge on the same general conclusion

57

Serendipity

The process of making an accidental discovery; finding X when searching for Y

58

Construct

A hypothetical factor (e.g., hunger) that cannot be observed directly but is inferred from certain behaviors (e.g., eating) and assumed to follow from certain circumstance (e.g., 24 hours without food)

59

Deduction

Reasoning from the general to the specific; in science, used when deriving research hypotheses from theories

60

Induction

Reasoning from the specific to the general; in science, used when the results of specific research studies are used to support or refute a theory

61

Productivity

With reference to theory, this refers to the amount of research that is generated to test a theory; theories that lead to a great deal of research are considered productive

62

Falsification

Research strategy advocated by Popper that emphasizes putting theories to the test by trying to disprove or falsify them

63

Parsimonious

Describing theory that includes the minimum number of constructs and assumptions in order to explain and predict some phenomenon adequately

64

Programs of research

Series of interrelated studies in which the outcome of one study leads to naturally to another

65

Research team

A group of researchers (professors and students) working together on the same research problem

66

Pilot study

During the initial stages of research it is common for some data to be collected; problems spotted in this trial stage enable the researcher to refine the procedures and prevent the full-scale study form being flawed methodologically

67

Replication

The repetition of an experiment; exact replications are rare, occurring primarily when the results of some prior study are expected to be erroneous

68

Extension

Replicating parts of a prior study, but adding some additional features (e.g., additional levels of the independent variable)

69

Partial replication

Repeats a portion of some prior research; usually completed as part of a study that extends the results of the initial research

70

Creative thinking

A process of making an innovative connection between seemingly unrelated ideas or events

71

Habituation

Gradual decrease in responding to repeated stimuli

72

Reliability

The extent to which measures of the same phenomenon are consistent and repeatable; measures high in reliability will contain a minimum of measurement error

73

Measurement error

Produced by any factor that introduces inaccuracies into the measurement of some variable

74

Validity

In general, the extent to which a measure of X truly measures x and not Y (e.g., a valid measure of intelligence measures intelligence and not something else)

75

Content validity

Occurs when a measure appears to be a reasonable or logical measure of some trait (e.g., as a measure of intelligence, problem solving has more content validity than hat size)

76

Face validity

Occurs when a measure appears, to those taking a test, to be a reasonable measure of some trait; not considered by researchers to be an important indicator of validity

77

Criterion validity

Form of validity in which a psychological measure is able to predict some future behavior or is meaningfully related to some other measure

78

Construct validity

In measurement, it occurs when the measure being used accurately assesses some hypothetical construct; also refers to whether the construct itself is valid; in research, refers to whether the operational definitions used for independent and dependent variables are valid

79

Convergent validity

Occurs when scores on a test designed to measure some construct (e.g., self esteem) are correlated with scores on other tests that are theoretically related to the construct

80

Discriminant validity

Occurs when scores on a test designed to measure some construct (e.g., self-esteem) are uncorrelated with scores on other tests that should be theoretically unrelated to the construct

81

Measurement scales

Ways of assigning numbers to events; see nominal, ordinal, interval, and ratio scales

82

Nominal scale

Measurement scale in which the numbers have no quantitative value, but rather serve to identify categories into which events can be placed

83

Ordinal scale

Measurement scale in which assigned numbers stand for relative standing or ranking

84

Interval scale

Measurement scale in which numbers refer to quantities and intervals are assumed to be of equal size; a score of zero is just one of many points on the scale and does not denote the absence of the phenomenon being measured

85

Ratio scale

Measurement scale in which numbers refers to quantities and intervals are assumed to be of equal size; a score of zero denotes the absence of the phenomenon being measured

86

Population

All of the members of an identifiable group

87

Sample

Some portion or subset of a population

88

Descriptive statistics

Provide a summary of the main features of a set of data collected from a sample of participants

89

Inferential statistics

Used to draw conclusions about the broader population on the basis of a study using just a sample of that population

90

Mean

The arithmetic average of a data set, found by adding the scores and dividing by the total number of scores in the set

91

Median

The middle score of the data set; an equal number of scores are both above and below the median

92

Outlier

In a data set, a data point that is so deviant from the remaining points that the researcher believes that it cannot reflect reasonable behavior and its inclusion will distort the results; often considered to be a score more than three standard deviations from the mean

93

Mode

The most frequently appearing score in the data set

94

Range

In a set of scores, the difference between the score with the largest value and the one with the smallest value

95

Standard deviation

A measure of the amount of deviation of a set of scores from the mean score; the square root of the variance

96

Variance

A measure of the average squared deviation of a set of scores from the mean score; the standard deviation squared

97

Interquartile range

The range of scores lying between the bottom 25% of a set of scores (25th percentile) and the top 25% of scores (75th percentile); yields a measure of variability unaffected by outliers

98

Histogram

Graph of a frequency distribution in bar form

99

Frequency distribution

A table that records the number of times that each score in a set of scores occurs

100

Normal curve

A theoretical frequency distribution for a population; a bell-shaped curve

101

Stem and leaf display

A method of displaying a data set that combines the features of a frequency distribution table and a histogram into one display

102

Null hypothesis

The assumption that no real difference exists between treatment conditions in an experiment or that no significant relationship exists in a correlational study (H0)

103

Alternative hypothesis

The researcher's hypothesis about the outcome of a study (H1)

104

Alpha level

The probability of making a Type I error; the significance level

105

Type I error

Rejecting the null hypothesis when it is true; finding a statistically significant effect when no true effect exists

106

Type II error

Failing to reject the null hypothesis when it is false; failing to find a statistically significant effect when the effect truly exists

107

Systematic variance

Variability that can be attributed to some identifiable source; either the systematic variation of the independent variable or the uncontrolled variation of a confound

108

Error variance

Nonsystematic variability in a set of scores due to random factors or individual differences

109

File drawer effect

A situation in which findings of no difference fail to be published (the studies are placed in one's files); if there are a large number of such findings, the few studies that do find a difference and get published produce a distorted impression of actual differences

110

Effect size

Amount of influence that one variable has on another; the amount of variance in the dependent variable that can be attributed to the independent variable

111

Meta-analysis

A statistical tool for combining the effect size of a number of studies to determine if general patterns occur in the data

112

Confidence interval

An inferential statistic in which a range of scores is calculated; with some degree of confidence (e.g., 95%), it is assumed that population values lie within the interval

113

Power

The chances of finding a significant difference when the null hypothesis is false; depends on alpha, effects size, and sample size

114

Experiment

A research procedure in which some factor is varied, all else is held constant, and some result is measured

115

Independent variable (IV)

The factor of interest to the researcher; it can be directly manipulated by the experimenter (e.g., creating different levels of anxiety in subjects), or participants can be selected by virtue of their possessing certain attributes (e.g., selecting two groups who differ in the normal levels of anxiousness)

116

Field experiment

An experiment that is conducted outside the laboratory; a narrower term than field research

117

Field research

Research that occurs in any location other than a scientific laboratory

118

Situational variable

Type of independent variable in which subjects encounter different environmental circumstances (e.g., large vs. small rooms in a crowding study)

119

Task variable

Type of independent variable in which participants are given different types of tasks to perform (e.g., mazes that differ in level of difficulty)

120

Instructional variable

Type of independent variable in which participants are given different sets of instructions about how to perform (e.g., given a lot of stimuli, various groups might be told to process them in different ways)

121

Experimental group

In a study with an identified control group, the experimental group is given the treatment being tested

122

Control group

A group not given a treatment that is being evaluate in a study; provides a means of comparison

123

Extraneous variables

Any uncontrolled factor that is not of interest to the researcher but could affect the results

124

Confound

Any extraneous variable that covaries with the independent variable and could provide an alternative explanation of the results

125

Dependent variable (DV)

Behavior measured as the outcome of an experiment

126

Ceiling effect

Occurs when scores on two or more conditions are at or near the maximum possible for the scale being used, giving the impression that no differences exist between the conditions

127

Floor effect

Occurs when scores on two or more conditions are at or near the minimum possible for the scale being used, giving the impression that no differences exist between the conditions

128

Subject variable

A type of independent variable that is selected rather than manipulated by the experiementer; refers to an already existing attribute of the individuals chosen for the study (e.g. gender)

129

Statistical conclusion validity

Said to exist when the researcher uses statistical analysis properly and draws the appropriate conclusions from the analysis

130

Construct validity

In measurement, it occurs when the measure being used accurately assesses some hypothetical construct; also refers to whether the construct itself is valid; in research, refers to whether the operational definitions used for independent and dependent variables are valid

131

External validity

The extent to which the findings of a study generalize to other populations, other settings, and other times

132

Subject pool

Group of students asked to participate in research, typically as part of an introductory psychology course requirement; sometimes called a "participant pool"

133

Ecological validity

Said to exist when research studies psychological phenomena in everyday situations (e.g., memmory for where we put our keys)

134

Internal validity

The extent to which a study is free from methodological flaws, especially confounding factors

135

Pretest

A measurement given to participants at the outset of a study, prior to their being given a treatment (or not treated, when participants are in a control group)

136

Posttest

A measurement given to participants at the conclusion of a study after they have experienced a treatment or been in a control group; comparisons are made with pretest scores to determine if change occurred

137

History

A threat to the internal validity of a study; occurs when some historical event that could affect participants happens between the beginning of a study and its end

138

Maturation

A threat to the internal validity of a study; occurs when participants change from the beginning to the end of the study simply as a result of maturational changes within them and not as a result of some independent variable

139

Regression to the mean

If a score on a test is extremely high or low, a second score taken will be closer to the mean score; can be a threat to the internal validity of a study if a pretest score is extreme and the posttest score changes in the direction of the mean

140

Testing

A threat to the internal validity of a study; occurs when the fact of taking a pretest influences posttest scores, perhaps by sensitizing participants to the purpose of the study

141

Instrumentation

A threat to the internal validity of a study; occurs when the measuring instrument changes from pretest to posttest (e.g., because of their experience with the instrument, experimenters might use it differently from pretest to posttest)

142

Subject selection effect

A threat to the internal validity of a study; occurs when those participating in a study cannot be assigned randomly to groups; hence the groups are nonequivalent

143

Attrition

A threat to the internal validity of a study; occurs when participants fail to complete a study, usually but not necessarily in longitudinal studies; those finishing the study may not be equivalent to those who started it

144

Between-subjects design

Any experimental design in which different groups of participants serve in the different conditions of the study

145

Within-subjects design (repeated-measures design)

Any experimental design in which the same participants serve in each of the different conditions of the study

146

Equivalent groups

Groups of participants in a between-subjects design that are essentially equal to each other in ways except for the different levels of the independent variable

147

Random assignment

The most common procedure for creating equivalent groups in a between-subjects design; each individual volunteering for the study has an equal probability of being assigned to any one of the groups in the study

148

Block randomization

A procedure used to accomplish random assignment and ensure an equal number of participants in each condition; ensures that each condition of the study has a subject randomly assigned to it before any condition has a subject assigned to it again; also used in within-subjects design as a counter-balancing procedure

149

Matching

A procedure for creating equivalent groups in which participants are measured on some factor (a 'matching variable') expected to correlate with the dependent variable; groups are then formed by taking participants who score at the same level on the matching variable and randomly assigning them to groups

150

Matching variable

Any variable selected for matching participants in a matched groups study

151

Psychophysics

One of experimental psychology's original areas of research; investigates the relationship between physical stimuli and the perception of those stimuli; studies thresholds

152

Sequence (order) effect

Can occur in a within-subjects design when the experience of participating in one of the conditions of the study influences performance in subsequent conditions

153

Progressive effect

In a within-subjects design, any sequence effect in which the accumulated effects are assumed to be th same from trial to trial (e.g., fatigue)

154

Carryover effect

Form of sequence effect in which systematic changes in performance occur as a result of completing one sequence of conditions rather than a different sequence

155

Counterbalancing

For a within-subjects variable, any procedure designed to control for sequence effects

156

Complete counterbalancing

Occurs when all possible orders of conditions are used in a within-subjects design

157

Partial counterbalancing

Occurs when a subset of all possible orders of conditions is used in a within-subjects design (e.g., a random sample of the population of all possible orders could be selected)

158

Latin square

Form of partial counterbalancing in which each condition of the study occurs equally often in each sequential position and each condition precedes and follows each other condition exactly one time

159

Reverse counterbalancing

Occurs in a within-subjects design when participants are tested more than once per condition; subjects experience one sequence, and then a second with the order reversed from the first (e.g., A-B-C-C-B-A)

160

Cross-sectional study

In developmental psychology, a design in which age is the independent variable and different groups of people are tested; each group is of a different age

161

Longitudinal study

In developmental psychology, a design in which age is the independent variable and the same group of people are tested repeatedly at different ages

162

Cohort effect

A cohort is a group of people born at about the same time; cohort effects can reduce the internal validity of cross-sectional studies because differences between groups could result from the effects of growing up in different historical eras

163

Cohort sequential design

In developmental psychology research, a design that combines cross-sectional and longitudinal designs; a new cohort is added to a study every few years, and then studied periodically throughout the time course of the study

164

Experimenter bias

Occurs when an experimenter's expectations about a study affect its outcome

165

Protocol

A detailed description of the sequence of events in a research session; used by an experimenter to ensure uniformity of treatment of research participants

166

Double blind

A control procedure designed to reduce bias; neither the participant nor the person conducting the experimental session knows which condition of the study is being tested; often used in studies evaluating drug effects

167

Participant bias

Can occur when the behavior of the participants is influenced by their beliefs about how they are supposed to behave in a study

168

Hawthorne effect

Name often given to a form of participant bias in which behavior is influenced by the mere knowledge that the participant is in an experiment and is therefore of some importance to the experimenter

169

Good subject role

A form of participant bias in which participants try to guess the experimenter's hypothesis and then behave in such a way as to confirm it

170

Demand characteristic

Any feature of the experimental design or procedure that increases the chances that participants will detect the true purpose of the study

171

Evaluation apprehension

A form of anxiety experienced by participants that leads them to behave so as to be evaluated positively by the experimenter

172

Manipulation check

In debriefing, a procedure to determine if subjects are aware of a deception experiment's true purpose; also refers to any procedure that determines if systematic manipulations have the intended effect on participants

173

Milgram, 1963

"Behavioral Study of Obedience"

174

Overmyer & Seligman, 1967

"Effects of Inescapable Shock Upon Subsequent Escape and Avoidance Responding"

175

Learned helplessness

Condition of a human or animal that has learned to behave helplessly, failing to respond even though there are opportunities for it to help itself by avoiding unpleasant circumstances or by gaining positive rewards

176

Festinger & Carlsmith, 1959

"Cognitive Consequences of Forced Compliance"

177

Cognitive dissonance

Feeling of discomfort when simultaneously holding two or more conflicting cognitions: ideas, beliefs, values or emotional reactions

178

Dutton & Aron, 1974

"Some evidence for heightened sexual attraction under conditions of high anxiety"

179

Cohen, 1994

"The Earth is round (p < .05)"

180

Rubin, 1970

"Measurement of Romantic Love"

181

Bandura, Ross & Ross, 1963

"Imitation of Film-Mediated Aggressive Models"

182

Darley & Latane, 1968

"Bystander intervention in emergencies: Diffusion of responsibility"

183

Bystander effect

Social psychological phenomenon that refers to cases where individuals do not offer any means of help in an emergency situation to the victim when other people are present. The probability of help has often appeared to be inversely related to the number of bystanders; in other words, the greater the number of bystanders, the less likely it is that any one of them will help.

184

Ryan, Hatfield & Hofstetter, 2002

"Caffeine reduces time of day effects on memory performance in older adults"