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Flashcards in Exam 2 Deck (49):
1

Experiment

Systematic research study in which the investigator varies some factor, holds all other factors constant, and observes the result of the variation

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Independent variable

factors under the control of the experimenter

The factor of interest to the experimenter, the one being studied to see if it will influence behavior. (sometimes called the manipulated factor or variable because the experimenter has complete control over it)

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situational variables

features in the environment that participants might encounter (type of independent variable)
ex:

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task variables

one way to manipulate task variables is to give participants different kinds of problems to solve
ex:

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instructional variables

are manipulated by telling different groups to perform a particular task in a different way
ex:

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experimental group

the treatment is present

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control group

the treatment is withheld

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Impact of Robert Woodsworths 1938 Experimental psychology on the way psychologists define an experiment

defining features of the experimental method an "independent variable" which affected what he called the "dependent variable". the experimenter "holds all the conditions constant" except for one factor "experimental factor" or the IV
the observed effect is the "dependent variable"

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manipulated independent variable

the independent variables that are under the experimenters total control

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what are the different varieties of manipulated independent variables

situational, task, instructional

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Research example 6- experimental and control groups

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dependent variable

behavior that is the measured outcome of the study

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two major problems that can occur with poorly chosen dependent variables

ceiling and floor effects

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confound

an extraneous variable that covaries with the independent variable and could provide an alternative explanation of the results

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ceiling effect

occurs when the average scores for the groups in the study are so high that no difference can be determined between conditions

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floor effect

happens when all the scores are extremely low, usually because the task is too difficult for everyone, once again producing a failure to find any difference between conditions

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factors that are not directly manipulated by an experimenter are referred to variously as...

ex post facto variables, natural group variables, participant variables, or subject variables

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subject variables

subject variables are already existing characteristics of the individuals participating in the study such as gender, age, socioeconomic class, cultural group, intelligence, physical or psychiatric disorder and any personality attribute

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Research example 7- Using subject variables

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being aware of subject variables is important because...

they affect the kinds of conclusions that can be drawn

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drawing conclusions when using subject variables

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types of validity

statistical conclusion validity
internal validity
external validity
construct validity

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statistical conclusion validity

concerns the extend to which the researcher uses statistics properly and draws the appropriate conclusions from the statistical analysis

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construct validity

construct has a related meaning, referring to the adequacy of the operational definitions for both the independent and the dependent variables used in the study

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external validity

the degree to which research findings generalize beyond the specific context of the experiment being conducted

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for research to achieve the highest degree of external validity its results should generalize in 3 ways

to other populations, to other environments, and to other times

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ecological validity

research with relevance for the everyday cognitive activities of people trying to adapt to their environment

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in a study of the effects of problem difficulty (easy or hard) and reward size (1$ or 5$ for each solution) on an anagram problem-solving task, what are the independent and dependent variables?

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what are extraneous variables and what happens if they are not controlled properly?

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explain how frustration could be an independent, extraneous, or dependent variable, depending on the study

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mills method of agreement

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mills method of difference

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mills joint method

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what exactly are mills methods?

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drawing conclusions when using subject variables

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external validity: other populations, other environments, other times

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1. explain how anxiety could be both a manipulated variable and a subject variable

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2. in the famous bobo doll study, what were the manipulated and the subject variables

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3. what is the basic difference between internal and external validity?

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4. the study on interpersonal attraction during speed dating was used to illustrate which form of validity?

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threats to internal validity

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history

an event outside of the study occurs between pre and post testing that produces large changes unrelated to the treatment program itself

ex:

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maturation

developmental changes that occur with the passage of time, that are a concern whenever a study extends over time
ex:

44

regression to the mean

refers to the fact that if the first score from a subject from a is an extreme score, then the second or third score from the same person will be closer to whatever the mean is for the larger set of scores

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attrition

also known as subject mortality, there may be 100 people at the start of the study and only 60 at the end. attrition is a problem because, if particular types of people are more likely to drop out than others, then the group finishing the study is on average made up of different types of people than is the group that started the study, which affects the external validity of the study.

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distinguishing internal validity, external validity, and confounding

internal validity refers to the methodological soundness of a study
external validity concerns whether or not the results of the study generalize beyond the specific features of the study

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testing

testing is considered a threat to internal validity when the mere fact of taking a pretest has an effect on post test scores

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instrumentation

instrumentation is a problem when the measurement instrument changes from pretest to posttest

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sections in chapter 5- introduction to experimental research

-essential features of experimental research
-subject variables
-the validity of experimental research
-threats to internal validity