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Introduction to Research in Psychology Acquiring knowledge Acquiring knowledge about the world Tradition or tenacity: I believe it is true because it has always been true. it is true. Intuition: I believe it is true because I feel Authority: I believe it is true because an “expert” says it is true. Reasoning: I believe it is true because it is Acquiring knowledge Acquiring knowledge about the world logically derived. Empiricism: I believe it is true because I – Rational thought – thinking with reason collected data. Science – a way of acquiring knowledge through the continual interaction of empiricism and reasoning Psychology – science and art Psychology – science and art The science of psychology provides the theory The art of psychology might involve applying that theory in skillful ways to help others Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinkers: – Ask questions – Objectively define problems – Examine the available evidence – Assess assumptions and biases – Avoid emotional reasoning – Separate facts from opinion Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinkers: – Avoid oversimplifying – Consider alternative explanations – Tolerate uncertainty – Maintain an air of skepticism but be open minded (i.e.. not cynical) n of one fallacy – drawing conclusions/ generalizations from anecdotal evidence The Critical Thinking Process The Critical Thinking Process
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Ask questions Define the problem Examine the available evidence Analyze assumptions and biases Avoid emotional reasoning Do no oversimplify Consider other interpretations Tolerate uncertainty Objectives of science Objectives of science To describe – description of the subject matter; in To explain – explain the trends that have been observed psychology the subject matter is human behavior and mental processes To predict – make predictions from the explanation
– If predictions are not confirmed, then the explanation is considered faulty and must be revised. To control – attempt to control and apply the phenomena The tenets of science The tenets of science Determinism – belief that events have natural causes – not predeterminism – predestination – reliance on real evidence to confirm or refute claims Empiricism The tenets of science continued The tenets of science continued Replicability – findings must be replicated before they are accepted – hypotheses and theories must be falsifiable/refutable through empirical research – simplest explanation for a phenomena Falsifiability Parsimony The tenets of science are ____. The tenets of science are ____.
A. B. C. D. determinism, empiricism, replicability, falsifiability, and parsimony. definition, empiricism, replicability, falsifiability, and parsimony determinism, empiricism, control, falsifiability, and parsimony. definition, empiricism, replicability, statistics, and parsimony Theories, concepts, Theories, concepts, and hypotheses Theory – a formal statement of how concepts are related Concepts – the general category of ideas that are represented by our variables Hypothesis – a prediction of how concepts are related that is often deduced from a theory Why we do research Why we do research To evaluate a theory To demonstrate a behavioral phenomenon To investigate the conditions influencing – need to demonstrate behavior under precise conditions before the phenomenon can be confidently added to the body of knowledge behavioral phenomena Approaches to research Approaches to research Descriptive vs. explanatory research – Descriptive research involves describing a population of measurements. – Explanatory research involves trying to answer “why” questions. – Quantitative research measures differences in amount of behavior. – Qualitative research describes differences in kind or quality of behavior. Quantitative vs. qualitative research Approaches to research Approaches to research Basic vs. applied research – In basic research the researcher is interested in answering a question to add to our knowledge base. – In applied research the researcher is looking at applying the knowledge to somehow benefit humankind. Approaches to research Approaches to research Crosssectional vs. longitudinal research – Crosssectional research studies individuals of different ages at one point in time. – Longitudinal research studies a single age cohort over a number of years. Cohort effect – a cohort of same aged individuals will share variables related to their history. Approaches to research Approaches to research Field vs. laboratory research – Field research takes place in a more natural setting. – Laboratory research allows better control over variables. – The decision to conduct research in the laboratory or in the field is a tradeoff between artificiality (high in the lab, low in the field), control over variables (high in the lab, low in the field) and generalizability (low in the lab, high in the field). The cohort effect ____. The cohort effect ____. A) is often a problem in laboratory research B) is often a problem in field research C) is not a problem in crosssectional research D) can be a confounding influence in cross sectional research Steps in planning and Steps in planning and doing research Generating testable hypotheses – Operationalize your concepts, i.e.. make them measurable. – Define your independent, dependent, and controlled variables. Classifying variables Steps in planning and Steps in planning and doing research Selecting an appropriate design – A complex task – you will need to consider time, money, facilities, the kind of variables you intend to measure, etc. – Focus on all the details. Planning the method and carrying it out Steps in planning and Steps in planning and doing research Analyzing results – Use the appropriate statistical analysis. – Interpret the results and draw conclusions. – Communicate your finds with others by publishing in journals or presenting at conferences. Drawing conclusions Sharing your findings Why do we consider psychology to be a Why do we consider psychology to be a science? A) The scientific method is used. B) Because research is often conducted in laboratories. C) It has historically been placed with the sciences. D) Psychology is not a science. Science is a way of knowing that combines Science is a way of knowing that combines ____ and ____. A) authority, reasoning B) authority, empiricism C) empiricism, reason D) tradition, empiricism Which of the following is not a tenet of Which of the following is not a tenet of science? A) determinism B) parsimony C) empiricism D) publication E) replicability ...
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