Flashcards in case studies Deck (20):
What is a case study
A case study is the detailed study of one case the case could be one person or it could be a group of people or an event
How long does a case study take to be conducted
It can be conducted over a short space of time one day only follow the case over many years
The key feature of the case study is that a lot of information is collected about the case and will involve a variety of techniques… What might the techniques be
Interviews psychological tests observation and even experiments
What the strengths of case studies? Name three
-The method offers rich in-depth data and information that may be overlooked using other methods
- can be used to investigate instances of human behaviour that are rare and could not be recreated in research labs
- the complex interaction of many factors can be studied in contrast with experiments where variables are held constant
The method is important for psychologists who'd adopt what approach?
The holistic approach i.e humanistic psychologists
What are the weaknesses of case studies in terms of time?
They can take a long time to collect and analyse data and the findings cannot be quickly accessed
Why is it difficult to generalise from case studies?
Each one has unique characteristics so
1) we cannot make before and after comparisons and
2\) sometimes the evidence is only anecdotal
Why are case studies sometimes unreliable
Because it is often necessary to use recollection of events and memories are sometimes inaccurate
Researchers may lack objectivity when undertaking case studies – why?
As they get to know the case they may interpret the data less objectively And allow their theoretical bias to influence their interpretation (e.g. Freud was criticised for producing case studies in which the information was sometimes distorted to fit particular theories about behaviour e.g. little hans)
What are the ethical issues surrounding case studies
Confidentiality and anonymity because many cases are easily identifiable
Why can case studies sometimes be easily identifiable
Because they contain unique characteristics
Describe a famous case study a bout a man who functioned despite a tamping iron being fixed through his skull
In 1848 Phineas Gage was working on the construction of the American railway when an explosion of dynamite drove a tamping iron right through his skull. He survived despite the loss of large amounts of brain matter. His personality changed however
Why was the case study of Phineas Gage useful to psychologists And the medical profession
It showed that removing tumours in the brain could be done because somebody could survive despite parts of their brain being removed. This led to developments in brain surgery
Describing the case study about Griffiths the teenager who was addicted to fruit machines
Data was collected through interviews but when his mother followed him discreetly she saw that this harmless fun was actually causing him to steal money. This led to a much greater insight about the problem and led to more authentic interview with Griffiths which revealed his feelings of being high, stoned excited when he was playing fruit machines whether or not he won many
What happened to Henry Molaison whose hippocampus was removed to reduce epileptic seizures?
He could no longer form new memories
What was the name of the boy in the case study who was raised as a girl
Describe a case study about obedience with groups of people
There is a famous case study about the People's Temple full gospel church led by the charismatic Rev Jim Jones he convinced his congregation to give him all of their money and property and to see him as a god
are reality TV programs classed as case studies?
They are a sort of case study but be aware that they cannot be generalisable because so much is from anecdotal material, Participants are directed for impact and might not fairly represent the people studied
What did psychologists find in the case study of mob behaviour in London riots in 2011
It had been generally thought that mobs were unruly and out of control but a study by Steve Reicher and Clifford argued that mob behaviour is not unruly. 'They don't simply go wild but actually tend to target particular shops and particular types of people'