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Research methods in psychology / John J. Shaughnessy, Eugene B. .. JOHN J. SHAUGHNESSY is Professor of Psychology at Hope College, a rela-. John J Shaughnessy Eugene B Zechmeister Jeanne S Zechmeister Research Now in its ninth successful edition, Research Methods in Psychology unites. Well, publication Research Methods In Psychology By John J Shaughnessy, Eugene B Zechmeister will make you closer to exactly what you are willing.

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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Shaughnessy, John J., – Research methods in psychology / John J. Shaughnessy, Eugene B. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, - Research methods in psychology pages, , English, Book; Illustrated, Research methods in psychology / John. Now in its ninth successful edition, Research Methods in Psychology unites students' passion for psychology with their interest in answering questions about .

The psychologist measured the number, duration, and complexity of the verbal utterances of each observed child. A psychologist conducted an experiment to test the hypothesis that individuals embedded in their ingroup culture would be less likely to help a stranger. College students were recruited to respond to Aa brief survey about their campus experience near the entrance to the student activity center.

The first testing session took place early in the semester. To activate identification with their university embeddedness , these participants were given a clipboard and asked to write down three things they like about their university. Twenty students were tested.

The second testing session took place on two afternoons during the last week of classes at the same location. In this control condition lowembedded situation , twenty new students were asked to write down three things they plan to do during break. In each condition, immediately after each participant returned the clipboard to the psychologist, a student research assistant, wearing a sweatshirt with the name of a rival school, walked by the pair and Aaccidentally dropped a file containing papers near the participant.

The psychologist recorded whether the participant helped pick up the papers. Results indicated that, as predicted, participants in the embedded condition were less likely to help than participants in the control condition. The psychologist concluded that identification with an in-group embeddedness causes people to offer less help to a stranger. Identify the independent variable of interest to the psychologist and its levels and the dependent variable.

The dependent variable is helping, measured by whether each participant helped to pick up papers. Explain clearly how the confounding occurred and describe the conclusions that can be made about the effects of embeddedness on helping.

Another potentially relevant variable is time of the semester participants were tested. The confounding occurred because all the participants in the embedded condition were tested early in the semester and all the participants in the control condition were tested during the last week.

The psychologist concluded that being embedded in an in-group causes people to be less helpful. Because of the confounding, however, it is also possible to conclude that participants are more helpful at the end of an academic term than at the beginning of the term. Suggest ways in which the experiment could be done so the psychologist could make a clear conclusion about the effect of identification with an in-group embeddedness and helping a stranger.

To break the confounding, the psychologist should conduct the experiment during one time period, such as the end of the semester. To manipulate embeddedness, half of the participants could write about what they like at their university embedded condition , and half could write about their plans for break control.

The psychologist could alternate which condition is tested, or flip a coin to determine which condition each participant would receive. In a widely distributed news report in March , researchers linked , obesity-related deaths worldwide including about 25, in America to the consumption of sugary beverages such as soda, energy and sports drinks.

Using data from the Global Burden of Diseases Study collected by the World Health Organization, the researchers investigated obesity-related deaths due to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.

They also obtained data for the per-capita consumption of sugary beverages for the countries in the health study. As sugary-beverage consumption increased, the risk of obesity-related deaths increased. The researchers claimed that overall, 1 in deaths of obese people globally is caused by drinking too many sweetened beverages.

Prominent nutritionists have claimed that sugary beverages are a major contributor to the obesity epidemic in the United States.

Scientific integrity in research methods

These data have been used by some government officials to call for limits on the size of soft drinks e. The researchers claim that consumption of sugary beverages leads to an increased risk of obesity-related death, and argue that limiting sugary-beverage consumption is an important step in reducing obesity-related deaths.

W hat evidence from this summary can be used to meet the conditions necessary for drawing this causal inference and what evidence is lacking? This study is correlational. The researchers noted a covariation between per-capita consumption of sugary beverages and obesity-related deaths diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer.

Covariation is the first condition for making a causal inference. We can presume that the second condition, time-order relationship, is also met because consumption of sugary beverages cannot take place after death. However, the third condition, elimination of plausible alternative explanations, is not met.

It is possible some third variable explains the relationship between consumption of sugary beverages and obesity-related deaths. For example, consuming sugary beverages may be associated with other dietary concerns e. Other potential third variables include amount of exercise or environmental factors. What sources beyond this summary would you want to check before reaching a conclusion about these findings?

The March 19, news report was not based on published research, but on a poster presentation at a conference. Searching the scientific literature on obesity and consumption of sugary beverages would identify more research on this topic, including studies that attempt experimental control over the variables.

Results for the midterm and final exams indicated that students in the clicker class performed better than students in the paper-andpencil and control classes. The researchers concluded that the use of clickers during lectures helps students to perform better on tests, and suggested that the clickers help students to engage in appropriate cognitive processing during learning.

W hat evidence is lacking? Be sure to describe the three conditions for a causal inference. The first condition required for a causal inference is covariation; that is, two variables must vary together or go together. This condition is met in the study with the evidence that test performance covaried with instructional method.

Students receiving the clicker method performed better than students in the paper-and-pencil and control classes. The second condition for a causal inference is time-order relationship or contingency. In this study, the researchers manipulated the teaching method using three levels clicker, paper-and-pencil, control and observed the dependent variable of test performance.

Because the teaching preceded the tests, it would appear that a time-order relationship is present. The third condition for a causal inference is the elimination of plausible alternative causes.

This condition is not met in this study because instructional method is confounded with the year each experimental condition was implemented.

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Students in the three different classes over the 3-year period may have differed in ways that could account for their test performance. Identify the four goals of the scientific method and explain whether each is met on the basis of findings from this study. Description could be met because test performance following the three different instructional methods can be described. Furthermore, prediction might be met because the researchers observed a relationship between the type of instructional method and test performance.

However, because of the 16 confounding i. An experiment is needed to achieve the goal of explanation, in this case, that the clicker method causes better test performance. Although these 17 researchers conducted an experiment by manipulating an independent variable the instructional method and observed the effect on the dependent variable test performance , aspects of their procedure raise alternative explanations.

For example, test performance may have differed for the three instructional methods because of differences among the students in the classes over the 3-year period. Reading Research Critically This research summary and the accompanying questions could be used in class for small group discussion.

The research summary and questions could be distributed to students in the class session prior to the scheduled discussion to allow time for students to prepare answers, perhaps as a homework assignment. The research summary and questions appear on the subsequent page to facilitate photocopying.

The Griskevicius et al. Answers to 1.

Reading Research Critically A. What is the independent variable in this study? Identify the specific levels of the independent variable. In one condition, students were randomly assigned to read a story designed to activate their motive for status. In the second condition, the control condition, students read a neutral non-status story.

What is the dependent variable in this study? They made three choices between a luxurious version of a product and a green version of the product. What information in the summary suggests that the major scientific goal of this study was explanation i. In this experiment, Griskevicius et al. Based on their results for the manipulated independent variable, they demonstrated that when status motives were activated, participants made more green choices, compared to a neutral condition.

How do you think the authors would state the research hypothesis for this study? Going green to be seen: Status, reputation, and conspicuous conservation.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 98, Based on a theory of altruism, downloading green products represents a form of self-sacrifice—a choice to forego more luxurious items and instead make downloads that benefit the environment and society.

Thus, consumers who choose green products may not be acting entirely unselfishly; they may perceive an increase in their own social status and prestige when they make green downloads. Griskevicius et al. In the status condition, students read a story in which they imagined graduating from college, looking for a job, and then securing a position that offered opportunities for advancement.

Details of the story focused on the high-status features of the workplace. In the control condition, participants read a neutral story designed not to enhance desire for status.

As they read this story, they imagined losing a concert ticket, searching and finding it, and then going to the concert. Each participant considered three types of products car, household cleaner, and dishwasher , and was asked to choose between a luxurious version of the product and an environmentally friendly green version.

Examining Correlational Evidence To help make the point that with only correlational evidence, the investigator can only hypothesize about possible causal factors underlying a relationship between variables, students can be asked to identify possible causal factors in the reports below; that is, they are asked to speculate on why events are correlated. In a preliminary step to research, the investigator considers possible causal factors, perhaps during discussions with other researchers.

As a class or in small groups, students can speculate on causal factors in the following reports of covariation. NOTE: To facilitate use for class handouts, the brief reports appear on the next page. Answers for the brief reports are presented below. Answers to 2. Examining Correlational Evidence A. When prospective employers view Facebook profiles, they use the information to make judgments about the job candidates.

Women adjust their food selection to conform to beliefs about what men find attractive as a means of impression management. That is, why do you think the events are correlated? Note that by identifying potential causal factors, you are generating hypotheses regarding the relationships between variables.

For example, profiles that emphasize family values or professionalism are related to increased likelihood of job offers, whereas profiles that contain information about use of drugs and alcohol are related to decreased likelihood of job offers. Why might this occur?

When women ate with a male companion, they chose foods with fewer calories than did women who ate with another woman.

Furthermore, the number of calories women selected decreased as the number of men in their dining group increased. The number of calories men selected was not related to the presence of men or women. In a study of middle school youth, researchers observed a relationship between popularity and alcohol use.

Subsequently, students responded to questions about their alcohol use. As the number of peer-nominated friendships increased, the likelihood of alcohol use also increased. Additional Challenge Questions These challenge questions along with the concepts illustrated in each question can be used for class discussion or possible test questions.

Consider how you would respond if you read the following report in a newsletter. Before you smoke it, consider this: Researchers investigated 2, children from ages 4 to 11 and found a direct link between parents who smoke and children with behavioral problems. Misbehavior increased with the number of cigarettes smoked by a parent. Smoking more than a pack a day increased behavioral problems 1. Explain why a causal relationship is not warranted on the basis of this study.

A covariation is present in that increased cigarette smoking is associated with increased behavioral problems. Thus, one may predict that the more parents smoke, the greater is the likelihood that they will have children with behavioral problems. However, correlation alone does not imply causation. Time-order is questionable. We should not make a causal inference without more information and an analysis of additional variables. A faculty adviser at a small college worked diligently over the summer to prepare an attractive brochure to give to her advisees when she first met them on campus.

The brochure described the various ways the adviser could be helpful to the students, and the adviser hoped that using the brochure would increase the number of students who came in to see her early in the semester. To try to maximize the effectiveness of the brochure the adviser also worked hard at being especially upbeat and friendly during the first advising meeting with students. The adviser concluded that the brochure had the desired effect.

In addition to giving the students the brochure, the adviser also worked hard at being especially upbeat and friendly during the first advising meeting. NOTE: Students may note other problems. Why or why not? It is possible that the brochure did work; but because of the way that the study was conducted i. One of your friends who is taking introductory psychology this semester tells you about something her professor covered in class that was a little distressing for her.

The professor described a study dealing with how satisfied married people are in their marriages. The professor emphasized that the study was very well done. For example, a large sample was used from a well-defined population and the measures of marital satisfaction were reliable and valid.

Your friend is now wondering whether this finding means that she will end up being less satisfied with her marriage someday. This study, because it is based on a large sample of married people and because it seeks to show what in general married people experience, is clearly an example of a nomothetic research study. The study is quantitative, not qualitative, because it is based on statistical summaries and analysis.

For example, the findings are reported in terms of the percentage of people who are more or less satisfied with their marriages than they had expected to be.

John J Shaughnessy Eugene B Zechmeister Jeanne S Zechmeister Research methods in

The results of a nomothetic study apply to everyone and to no one at the same time. The overall percentage of people who are not as satisfied as they expected tells us what in general is true of married individuals. A physiological psychologist developed a drug that she thought would revolutionize the world of 28 horse racing.

She named the drug Speedo, and it was her contention that this drug would lead horses to run much faster than they do now. For the sake of this hypothetical problem, we are ignoring the fact that it is illegal to give drugs to racehorses. She selected two groups of horses and gave one of the groups injections of Speedo once a week for 4 weeks. Those horses not given the Speedo were maintained on their regular diet. After the 4-week period, all the horses were timed in a 2-mile race and the mean average times for the horses given Speedo were significantly faster than the mean times for those not given Speedo.

The psychologist concluded that her drug was effective. Explain clearly how the confounding occurred. The independent variable of interest is the drug treatment with two levels, the Speedo condition and the no-drug control condition.

A confounding is present because the administration of the drug covaries with the presence of the high-protein diet. That is, the horses given Speedo were also given the high-protein diet and horses not given the drug were maintained on their regular diet. The psychologist mistakenly concluded that the drug is effective. Thus, the psychologist cannot draw any conclusion about the effectiveness of the drug. Because the horses given Speedo must be placed on the high-protein diet, this factor must be held constant in the control group.

Thus, horses in the control condition also should be placed on the high-protein diet. If the horses given Speedo demonstrate significantly faster racing times than control horses, we can more confidently make the causal inference that Speedo caused them to run faster.

There were participants in the study drawn from the Pittsburgh area. The researchers examined the relationship between Internet use and psychological well-being. A director of the study stated that the study did not involve testing extreme amounts of Internet use. The participants were normal adults and their families. On average, for those who used the Internet the most, psychological well-being was the worst. For example, 1 hour a week of Internet use led to slight increases on a depression scale and on a loneliness scale and a reported 29 decline in personal interaction with family members.

The researchers concluded that Internet use appears to cause a decline in psychological well-being. They suggested that users of the Internet were building shallow relationships that led to an overall decline in feelings of connection to other people. What evidence is present in this summary of the report to meet the conditions necessary for drawing this causal inference and what evidence is lacking?

Research methods can be a dry topic sometimes but can be made infinitely more interesting with informed participation. A note on laptops: while they are allowed in the lectures, please do not let them distract others nearby by using them for browsing the Internet browsing or watching videos.

Journal Club One of the best if not THE best ways to become more familiar with the intricacies of research methodology is to read published work in an analytical and critical way. For the past few years, I have added a weekly Journal Club to this course, for exactly that reason.

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Find out more about it here. It is entirely voluntary; you can just subscribe to the mailing list and join whenever you find an article interesting. Some Easy Listening Last year, two students in the course met with me every week and recorded five interviews for Mindwise , which looked at some of the more interesting aspects of methodology and research ethics that we never got round to address in the lectures. These interviews are now collected and available on the Mindwise Soundcloud page.

You can also listen to them directly in this page.

Assessment Your grade for PSBE is assessed entirely by means of a multiple-choice exam on week This exam will consist of 60 multiple-choice questions, each with three alternatives. The answers to all these questions will have been addressed during the course either in the lectures, or in the reading material. The exam lasts 2 hours. A second-chance exam, which also comprises 60 multiple-choice questions and lasts 2 hours, is scheduled for week The usual rules about exams apply to this exam too.

For the first time this year, the exam will be an electronic one. I have been assured that electronic exams have been running smoothly for a while now at the RUG and the prospect of getting instant feedback on your performance not to mention the hundreds of pages of paper we no longer have to waste was enough to convince me to make the leap.

Note: this information is subject to change, so keep an eye for timetable changes here.In this study, the researchers manipulated the teaching method using three levels clicker, paper-and-pencil, control and observed the dependent variable of test performance.

Based on the report of this study, only the first condition for causal inference, covariation, is met. Dordrecht: Reidel; , — Why might this occur? The name field is required. For each of the following characteristics, distinguish between the scientific approach and everyday approaches to knowledge: Results of the study indicated that students with more accurate notes performed better on essay and multiple-choice tests in the course than did students with less accurate notes.

What is the independent variable in this study? Sternberg, R.

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