Psychology 139 Final Chapter 2

  1. Hypothesis testing approach
    • Research begins with a theory, ( a general statement about the possible relationship between variables.) Hypothesis is a formal prediction derived from the theory, and it is
    • formulated in a way that can lend itself to be tested.
  2. Characteristics of a good theory. (p20)
    Good theory- is parsimonious- uses as few variables as possible, and useful-lends itself to research.
  3. Correlational studies
    A procedure that tells us how two variables vary together- that is- change in one variable is associated with change in another variable. Does no identify cause-and-effect relationships. Described along its magnitude, from -1 to 1, and direction=positive, negative, or no correlation.
  4. Experiments; manipulated
    vs. non-manipulated independent variables.- study very well!
    • A procedure that enables us to identify cause-and effect relationships. We manipulate the Independent Variable (IV) to assess its influence on the Dependent Variable (DV). To Manipulate the IV means to create different levels of it.For example: If we want to assess the impact of sleep deprivation on concentration, we will create different levels of sleep- to see whether those who sleep more are able to concentrate better than those who sleep less (note issue of
    • random assignment). The Independent Variable: the one that is theorized to affect, influence, another variable (the dependent variable). Random assignment of participants into the various experimental groups (e.g. sleeping 8 hours, 5 hours, 3 hours etc) eliminates any pre-existing differences among the participants. NON MANIPULATED INDEPENDENT VARIABLES-
    • In many situations we are not able to randomly assign participants into groups. The groups already exist. For example: The impact of divorce of children’s academic performance. In such cases we cannot determine cause-and-effect relationships. The results are presented as correlations
  5. Statistical significance and correlation
    • A procedure that tells us the extent
    • to which a result in experiment reflects real differences among the groups, or chance fluctuations. Is expressed in terms of probability – EX> result that is found to be significant at 5% tells us that there is a 95% probability that the result reflects true differences among the subjects, and not random factors.
  6. The case-study method and its limitations
    Oldest form of study. Involves studying one person in depth, often along time. Useful when there is a rare case that otherwise is difficult to study. Also useful to show the results of therapy. May also be subject to bias. Difficult to generalize to others.
  7. Personality assessment: concepts of reliability, test-retest, and internal consistency.
    • Personality tests need to possess psychometric qualities. Reliability- extent to which the results of test show consistency along time. – one form of assessing reliability is “test-retest” administering the test to the same person at two different points in time.- Reliability can also be assessed as “internal consistency”- the extent to which the items of the test correlate with the
    • overall score.
  8. validity- congruent and discriminant validity
    • The extent to which the test measures
    • what is claims to measure. Different forms of validity. Criterion-related. Concurrent. Construct validity,
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Psychology 139 Final Chapter 2
Psychology 139 Final Chapter 2