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Psbe2 08 research methods 2011-2012 - week 1

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Psbe2 08 research methods 2011-2012 - week 1

  1. 1. PSBE2-08Research Methods 1
  2. 2. Course Objectives 2
  3. 3. • Discuss the nature of the scientific process and how it applies to Psychology.• Discuss the principles of experimental design.• Highlight the ethical issues involved in conducting psychological research.• Discuss the methods and techniques involved in data acquisition and processing, in psychological research.• Identify the research designs best suited to answering a range of research questions. 3
  4. 4. Course Literature 4
  5. 5. Chapters:1–9 and Chapter 13 5
  6. 6. Custom publication byMcGraw-HillAvailable now from:VIPSelexyzLibrary (original sources) 6
  7. 7. • Suggested Reading: – “Rival Hypotheses” (Huck and Sandler) – “Evaluating Research Methods in Psychology” (Dunbar) – www.badscience.net – www.sciencedaily.com/news/mind_brain/psychology/ – Use Nestor to post articles for discussion 7
  8. 8. Podcasts Every week Available on Nestor … but don’t stop coming to the lectures 8
  9. 9. Assessment• One exam (no partials): – Multiple-choice exam on week 14 – 60 questions, 3 alternatives – Must register for the exam on ProgressWWW• Course evaluation – At the time of the last exam 9
  10. 10. What’s New 10
  11. 11. • No more Chapter 6 (“Questionnaires, Interviews, and Diaries”)• More on ethics• More interactive segments/discussions 11
  12. 12. What’s Old 12
  13. 13. • The book stays the same• The lectures will not focus more on the book• We stay with mp3s, not videos 13
  14. 14. The week’s readingChapters 1 and 2 (pp. 1 – 60) and Chapter 13 (pp. 292 – 299) 14
  15. 15. Pt 1. Introduction 15
  16. 16. The Scientific Method• An approach to asking questions• A method of obtaining answers• Two important aspects: – Empirical approach • Direct observation • Systematic control through experimentation – Sceptical attitude 16
  17. 17. Thinking Like a Researcher• Be sceptical of any and all claims• Be open-minded• The strongest evidence is converging evidence from multiple studies 17
  18. 18. 18
  19. 19. The Habits of A Good Researcher• Enthusiasm• Open-mindedness• Common sense• Role-taking ability• Inventiveness• Confidence in own judgment• Consistency and care for details• Ability to communicate• Honesty 19
  20. 20. Getting Started Doing Research• What should I study? – Choose a research topic by reviewing: • psychology journals • textbooks • courses 20
  21. 21. Getting Started Doing Research• Research hypotheses A hypothesis (plural: hypotheses) is – a tentative explanation for a phenomenon – often stated as a conditional statement (if theory X is correct, then under these conditions we expect behaviour Y) 21
  22. 22. Getting Started Doing Research• How to develop a hypothesis – Consider exceptions from a general trend – Imagine how you would behave in a situation – Consider similar problems and responses – Perform sustained observations of a person or phenomenon – Consider counterexamples for an obvious conclusion – Use ideas or theories from other disciplines – Read reports of psychological research 22
  23. 23. Vilayanur RamachandranNeuroscientist at UCSD“look for the odd cases” http://www.ted.com/talks/vilayanur_ramachandran_on_your_mind.html and 23 http://www.scribd.com/doc/16550045/VS-Ramachandran-Profile
  24. 24. Getting Started Doing Research• How to develop a hypothesis – Consider exceptions from a general trend – Imagine how you would behave in a situation – Consider similar problems and responses – Perform sustained observations of a person or phenomenon – Consider counterexamples for an obvious conclusion – Use ideas or theories from other disciplines – Read reports of psychological research 24
  25. 25. Getting Started Doing Research• Is the research question a good one? – scientifically important? – scope? – likely outcomes? – psychological science advanced? – anyone interested in the results? 25
  26. 26. The Research Process• Develop a research question• Generate a research hypothesis• Form operational definitions• Choose a research design• Evaluate the ethical issues• Collect and analyze data; form conclusions• Report research results 26
  27. 27. Break! 27
  28. 28. Null Hypothesis Significance Testing and Power 28
  29. 29. Null Hypothesis Significance Testing• Goal – determine whether mean differences among groups in an experiment are greater than differences expected simply because of chance (error variation)• First step – assume that the groups do not differ (H0) • = null hypothesis • assume the independent variable did not have an effect 29
  30. 30. Null Hypothesis Significance Testing• Next steps – Probability theory: estimate likelihood of observed outcome, while assuming null hypothesis is true. – “statistically significant” • outcome has small likelihood of occurring under H0 • reject H0 • conclude IV had an effect on DV – difference between means is larger than what would be expected if error variation alone caused the outcome 30
  31. 31. 31
  32. 32. probability 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 “heads” count 32
  33. 33. probability 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 “heads” count 33

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