Thinking like a Psychological Scientist – PSYC 100_ Principles of Psychology F21.pdf

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12/1/21, 12:13 PMThinking like a Psychological Scientist – PSYC 100: Principles of Psychology F211/283. Thinking like aPsychological ScientistOriginal chapter by Erin I. Smith adapted by the Queen’s UniversityPsychology DepartmentThis Open Access chapter was originally written for the NOBA project.Information on the NOBA project can be found below.We encourage students to use the “Three-Step Method” for support in theirlearning. Please ±nd our version of the Three-Step Method, created in collabo-ration with Queen’s Student Academic Success Services, at the following link:We are bombarded every day with claims about how the world works, claimsthat have a direct impact on how we think about and solve problems in soci-
12/1/21, 12:13 PMThinking like a Psychological Scientist – PSYC 100: Principles of Psychology F212/28ety and our personal lives. This module explores important considerations forevaluating the trustworthiness of such claims by contrasting between scien-ti±c thinking and everyday observations (also known as “anecdotal evidence”).Learning ObjectivesCompare and contrast conclusions based on scienti±c and everyday in-ductive reasoning.Understand why scienti±c conclusions and theories are trustworthy, evenif they are not able to be proven.Articulate what it means to think like a psychological scientist, consideringqualities of good scienti±c explanations and theories.Discuss science as a social activity, comparing and contrasting facts andvalues.IntroductionWhy are some people so much happier than others? Is it harmful for childrento have imaginary companions? How might students study more effectively?Even if you’ve never considered these questions before, you probably havesome guesses about their answers. Maybe you think getting rich or falling inlove leads to happiness. Perhaps you view imaginary friends as expressions ofa dangerous lack of realism. What’s more, if you were to ask your friends, theywould probably also have opinions about these questions—opinions that mayeven differ from your own.A quick internet search would yield even more answers. We live in the“Information Age,” with people having access to more explanations and an-swers than at any other time in history. But, although thequantityof informa-tion is continually increasing, it’s always good practice to consider thequalityof what you read or watch: Not all information is equally trustworthy. The trust-worthiness of information is especially important in an era when “fake news,”
12/1/21, 12:13 PMThinking like a Psychological Scientist – PSYC 100: Principles of Psychology F213/28Today, people are overwhelmed with informationalthough it varies in quality. [Image: Mark Smiciklas,, CC BY-NC 2.0,]urban myths, misleading“click-bait,” and conspir-acy theories compete forour attention alongsidewell-informed conclu-sions grounded in evi-dence. Determining whatinformation is well-in-formed is a crucial con-cern and a central task ofscience. Science is a wayof using observabledatato help explain and un-

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Term
Winter
Professor
NoProfessor
Tags
Test, Principles of Psychology, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions,

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