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Unformatted text preview: 08/01/2008 10:35:00 ← 1. Psychology, Science, and Truth • The Goal of science: To discover TRUTH o Truth: That which corresponds to reality o The Goal of life, religion, philosophy…is the same. So what is different about science? • Some methods of discovering truth – many different ways to discover it o Epistemology: The different methods you use to discover what you know o It’s hard to argue with people ACROSS epistemologies. Can’t really cross them. o I. Intuition – it just FEELS true Pros and Cons. It’s very hard to intuit that the world is not flat. o II. Metaphysics – religion, mythology, etc. Pros and cons for them too. “Because God says so.” o III. Logic – basic assumptions, if-then reasoning’s, math, logical assumptions o IV. Science – based on evidence (we will not believe it unless there is evidence to support). This is where psychologists stand. • Is the world flat? 2. The Basics of Psychological methodology • A. Hypotheses and operationalizations o Hypothesis: A testable prediction made by a theory o Operational definitions: Quantified, measurable definitions of abstract conditions What does it mean to weigh? Pounds, grams, grams, kg, mass, … need to define the terms because it is abstract. How hot is it? How cold is it? Degrees farenheit or Kelvin are NOT abstract Practice – Vitamin C is good for your health. Makes you healthier. – Abstract so…better mood and psychological or Physical health? We decided physical health. See if it reduces days of illness. Vitamin C is ascorbic acid. Needs a certain amount of grams per day and it needs to be a constant. Watching TV violence causes aggressive behavior – Measure how many hours a day a person watches violent television. Define what television is violent. Number of violent acts they watch on television. Watch how they behave on the playground. How often they engage in aggressive behavior ie fighting, punching, taking a ball from someone. Smoking causes lung cancer. Quantify smoking – how many cigarettes today. Lung cancer – look at the number of lesions, benign versus malignant. Steve is a 19 year-old NU student. He is approached by a gorgeous young woman. They talk for a minute, and then she asks him over to her place to watch a movie. He quickly denies her request and walks away. • Why did Steve behave as he did? – Thousands of possibilities. • Operational definitions for this hypothesis? • B. Reliability and validity o Reliability – The tendency for a measure to produce the same result whenever it is used to measure the same thing...
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This note was uploaded on 04/17/2008 for the course PSYCH 110 taught by Professor Finkel during the Winter '08 term at Northwestern.
- Winter '08