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26 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back

What are the components of an empirical study?

Ethics, variables, samples, designs and statistics.

What is information bias?

When we only account for the evidence that supports our belief.

What is change blindness?

The failure to notice major differences in a visual stimulus/

What is inattentional blindness?

A psychological lack of attention not associated with visual defects.

What is a hypothesis? And how is one generated?

A hypothesis is an idea or explanation that you then test through study and experimentation.

It is generated considering the cause, effect, types of people and the types of situations.

What are the various steps in the scientific method?

1. Identify the question

2. Gather info and generate hypothesis

3. Test hypothesis through research

4. Analyse the data, draw conclusions and report findings

5. Build a body of knowledge, conduct more research etc.

What is an experiment?

An experiment investigates the effect of an independent variable on a dependent variable. All other conditions remain constant.

What is the independent variable?

It shows the comparison between two experimental conditions or groups. It therefore must have at least two levels.

What is the dependant variable?

It is generally what is being measured.

What is between subjects design? What are the advantages and disadvantages?

When there is two different groups each being tested on two different independent variables.

Advantages - naïve to procedures, essential when testing naturally occurring variables.

Disadvantages - more participants needed, differences in conditions may be due to differences in each group.

What is within subjects design? What are the advantages and disadvantages?

When there is one group being tested for both conditions.

Advantages - fewer participants needed, solves problems of between group differences.

Disadvantages - order and practice effects, use counterbalancing.

What is internal validity? What factors can limit this?

The degree to which an experiment supports a clear, casual conclusion.

Limiting factors include - cofounding variables, expectancy effects and external validity.

What are experimenter expectancy effects?

Subtle and unintentional cues which influence a participant's response.

What are demand characteristics?

Participants are aware that they haven't been told everything about the experiment and so they pick up cues about the hypothesis which therefore influences their behaviour.

What is the placebo effect? What type of study is carried out to help reduce this?

It shows a change in behaviour, or symptoms, due to an individual's expectations. It can be influenced by the colour of a pill, packaging or knowledge of practitioner.

Double blind studies.

What are the advantages of experimental research?

Isolates cause and effect, experimenter is in control of cofounding variables, high internal validity, replication is possible, avoids the problem of a "third variable".

What are the disadvantages of experimental design?

There can be both participant and experimenter bias, uses artificial conditions and measures, low external validity, participants contribution is prescribed/replication crisis, they limit the type of phenomena studied.

What must an experimenter ensure in order for a study to be considered ethical?

Participant consent, debriefing, confidentiality, participants aren't deceived, they are aware of their right to withdraw and they are protected from and harm.

What are the different measurements of variables?

Self report - eg. personality, intellegence scales

Physiological - eg. brain activity, heart rate


What are different types of research designs?

Observational and correlational - use of surveys to predict behaviour.

Single case studies - to describe and understand an individual's behaviour.

Experimental designs - to manipulate a variable and measure its effect in a controlled setting to establish a cause-effect relationship.

What are two different types of statistics?

Descriptive - summarises and describes characteristics of data (mean, median etc.).

Inferential - allows us to make inferences about a population based on findings from a sample (correlations, T-tests etc.).

What is the mode? Give advantages and disadvantages.

The most common score in a set of results.

Advantages - useful for data from a non-numeric scale.

Disadvantages - can have more than one mode.

What is the median? Give advantages and disadvantages.

The point at which 50% of the scores fall.

Advantages - not affected by extreme values, useful for data from ordinal scale.

Disadvantages - can be unrepresentative of the entire distribution.

What is the mean? Give advantages and disadvantages.

The sum of the individual scores divided by the total number of scores.

Advantages - represents the entire distribution of data.

Disadvantages - influenced by extreme values.

What are inferential statistics?

They allow you to draw conclusions about a population based on data collected from a sample.

What is probability?

The likelihood of an event, usually expressed as a percentage or in decimals.

A bad sample gives a high probability and a good sample gives low probability.