Activity_2.1 - Culture and Psychological Research 35 Name...

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Unformatted text preview: Culture and Psychological Research 35 Name Date Activity 21‘ FUNCTIONS OF CROSS-CULTURAL RESEARCH As you have probably realized by now, cross-cultural research is not without its difficulties. Efforts must be made to identify appropriate cultures for testing a theory and to develop or select measures and procedures that will ensure cross-cultural comparisons are based on equivalent data. Why, then, would social scientists make the effort to conduct such research? Researchers choose to conduct cross-cultural studies for many different reasons. The purpose of this activity is to become familiar with the major functions of cross-cultural research. Directions: Several functions of cross—cultural research have been identified and described (Lonner & Adamopoulos, 1997; Triandis, 1980). Read the functions of cross-cultural research listed below. Then, for each of the research project descriptions that follow, indicate which of the functions is served by taking a cross- cultural approach. More than one function may be relevant to some of the project descriptions. Functions of Cross-Cultural Research Identifying culture-specific values, cognitive categories, or forms of behavior. Unconfounding variables. Two variables that may be linked in one culture may be unrelated in another culture. ’ Expanding the range of variables. Understanding the relationship between ecological and psychological variables. identifying human universals. Testing the generality of psychological models or theories. Studying the effect of cultural change. 9'!“ c. d. e. f. g. 3 6 Chapter 2 Project Descriptions: 1. A specialist in post-traumatic stress disorder constructed a model for predicting the likelihood that someone will develop psychological disturbances in response to extreme trauma. His original model was based on a study of survivors of war-related incidents in Northern Ireland. He wondered if his model would also be a good predictor in other cultures, so he tested it on a similar population in Mozambique. ‘ What function was served by taking a cross-cultural approach? Please explain. 2. A community psychologist was interested in the effect of neighborhood stability on willingness to participate in community—based environmental programs. She was having some difficulty conducting her research because in her own culture most neighborhoods were relatively unstable. By including several other cultures in her study, she was able to explore "willingness to participate" within unstable, moderately stable, and highly stable neighborhoods. What function was served by taking a cross-cultural approach? Please explain. 3. A social psychologist was studying the impact of exposure to television on children's beliefs about the value of material goods. In her own culture, only wealthy families own televisions, thus causing difficulty in separating the effects of television viewing from the effects of growing up in a wealthy family. Instead, she decided to conduct her research in the United States where she could find children with different levels of exposure to television at both high and low income levels. What function was served by taking a cross-cultural approach? Please explain. Culture and Psychological Research 37 4. An experimental psychologist was interested in the effect of urban living on depth perception. He reasoned that city dwellers might be less sensitive than people in rural environments to depth cues that involve distance. He used stimuli to assess the perception of depth cues with individuals living in cultures based in a variety of urban and rural environments. What function was served by taking a cross-cultural approach? Please explain. 5. An interdisciplinary team of researchers was exploring the reasons why members of certain ethnic groups were underrepresented as clients of a neighborhood mediation center. They hypothesized that the techniques used at the mediation center may be culturally inappropriate for some people. instead of encouraging members of those groups to use the mediation center, they decided to conduct a cross-cultural study to try to identify methods of resolving disputes that were indigenous to those ethnic groups. What function was served by taking a cross—cultural approach? Please explain. 6. A clinical psychologist was interested in the impact of racial oppression on self- concept. Because changes in racial oppression were more subtle in his own culture, he decided to conduct a study in South Africa in which he compared pre- and post- Apartheid indices of self—esteem among school children. a What function was served by taking a cross-cultural approach? Please explain. 3 8 Chapter 2 7. A student of psychology examined crime statistics in her country and noticed that far ‘ more violent criminal acts were committed by males than by females. She wondered if this might be due to biological differences or whether it reflected gender differences in experience (such as childrearing, the media, toys, or peer influences). When she looked to the cross-cultural literature she found a large number of studies from different parts of the world reporting findings that males exhibited higher rates of aggression than females. What function was served by taking a cross-cultural approach? Please explain. References: Lonner, W. J., & Adamopoulos, J. (1997). Culture as antecedent to behavior. In J. W. Berry, Y. H. Poortlnga. & J. Pandey (Eds), Handbook of cross-cultural psychology: Vol 1. Theory and method (2nd ed.. pp. 43-83). Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Triandis, H. C. (1980). Introduction to handbook of cross-cultural psychology. In H. C. Triandis & W. W. Lambert (Eds), Handbook of cross-cultural psychology: Vol. 1. Perspectives (pp. 1—14). Boston: Allyn & Bacon. ...
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Activity_2.1 - Culture and Psychological Research 35 Name...

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