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Research Methods

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  1. Research Methods Lecture 3, 1/28/04

  2. The Research Process In action

  3. Woah, I could tell a lot about that guy from his room 1st step = Personality is revealed in living spaces 2nd step: form specific testable prediction The Research Process

  4. Idea Generation • Personal Living Spaces (PLS) are rich with information about personality, values, abilities, and lifestyle • H1: People’s dispositions are revealed in their behavioral residues • H2: Observers use information in PLS to form impressions about people

  5. Neat Living Space Tidying Up Belongings Displaying Political Icons Collecting Memorabilia Pebble From Favorite Beach Poster of Malcolm X How are dispositions revealed in a person’s living space? Disposition Manifest Behavior Residue of Behavior Conscientiousness Values & Attitudes e.g., Politically Liberal Sentimental

  6. How Will We Find Out? Psychological Measurements • Self-Report* • Ask people to describe their own thoughts, feelings, or behavior. • Behavioral Observation* • Firsthand observation of a subject’s behavior. • Archival Records* • Investigate existing records of past behavior. • *Problems?

  7. Operational Definitions • Define variables in terms of procedures needed to control and measure it ___________ as measured by ______________ • People’s dispositions as measured by ______ • Judgments as measured by _________

  8. Personality** I see myself as someone who is…

  9. Judge-Reported Conscientiousness Conscientiousness Uncluttered Well-organized Neat Organized clothing Relatively empty Organized CDs Organized books Organized stationary Clean Inviting Comfortable Good condition Cheerful Colorful r = .81

  10. r = Correlation • Can observers accurately judge conscientiousness from living spaces? +1 = the more conscientious people said they were, the more their rooms were rated as conscientious. -1 = the more conscientious people said they were, the less their rooms were rated as conscientious. 0 = no relation at all • .81 --- yes, observers can accurately judge conscientiousness from living spaces

  11. The Research Process

  12. Descriptive research Central Tendency Variability Correlation Coefficient Causal Research >2 groups: experimental & control Independent & Dependent variables Random assignment What to do?

  13. Descriptive: Who are you? • Music: • Rap/Hip-hop • TV • Sports • Drink • Bottled water • Spend time • Cooking, eating restaurants, praying, working out • Spend Money • Books, fast-food, car, groceries, clothes, nightlife • General • Laughing, upset stomach, joint pain, flirting

  14. Number of People Mean: 5.2 Median: 6 Mode: 6 Range: 2-6 Standard Deviation: 1.17 Central Tendency Variability When (never - w/in 24hrs) Hip-hop Histogram

  15. Central Tendency Variability Upset stomach Histogram Number of People Mean: 4.1 Median: 4 Mode: 4 Range: 1-6 Standard Deviation: 1.32 When (never - w/in 24hrs)

  16. How variables relate to each other • Why do you have upset stomachs so often?

  17. Why do you have upset stomachs so often? • Nervous about start of school? (insomnia, praying, playing computer games) • Partying too much? (drinking, clubbing) • Food poisoning? (trying new foods, diarrhea) • Life anxiety? (fighting with friends, homesick) • Sick in general? (prescriptions, headache, backache)

  18. What’s related to upset stomachs?

  19. Correlation does not prove causation

  20. What’s the Cause? • New theory… • Control and comparison • Independent variable- “cause” • Dependent variable- “effect” • Randomly assign groups • Experimental • Control

  21. Anxiety causes hunger • DV = Hunger as measured by ___ • self report: • Objective: • IV = Anxiety • Manipulation: • Control: • Random assignment • Experimental • Control • Analysis

  22. Experimenter Expectancy

  23. Pygmalion in the classroom • “Harvard Test of General Ability” • Predicts “academic blooming” or “spurting” • 18 teachers given lists of “top 20%” • Randomly Assigned • End of year re-test (TOGA) • I.Q. Change? • What happened to scores of alleged “bloomers”?

  24. I.Q. Score Gains

  25. Concluding Discussion • Do you agree psychology is the scientific study of behavior and the mind? • What are some problems with psychological research? • Are white, freshman in college generalizable? • Animals vs. Humans?