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Flashcards in T3 Slide W1 Deck (39)
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Why do we need the Scientific Method? (5)

Human Judgement is not reliable. We rely heavily on techniques such as:

  • Intuition
  • Heuristics/Biases
  • Perception vs Reality
  • Human Observation
  • Reliance on Authority


How do Psychologists know things?

Use the Scientific Method to observe and measure reliably


What are some non-science ways of knowing?

  • Intuition
  • Heuristics/Biases
  • Perception vs Reality
  • Human Observation
  • Reliance on Authority


Why do we not trust human Judgement?

Human Judgement is not reliable and humans are fallible.


Non Science ways of knowing (5)

  • Tenacity
  • Intuition
  • Authority
  • Rationalism
  • Empiricism


Explain Psychology and Research

In order to study the mind scientifically we need to develop agreed upon methods for acquiring knowledge. 

We use the Scientific Method to ensure this as best we can


Brain in a Vat Scenario

- A scenario where a "mad Scientist" puts a brain in a jar and sustains it's life force

- The brain is attached to a computer and is able to think and feel normally

- The brain believes it is real and alive.  It does not know it is merely a simulation

- Do we even need a body? Is our body real?



Acquiring Knowledge through superstition and or habit



Acquiring Knowledge that is not based on reason or logic


Reliance on Authority

Accepting information because it is from a respected source or authority



Acquisition of knowledge through reasoning



Acquiring knowledge through experience


What do we accept as evidence of truth?

  • Science is based on evidence
  • Evidence must be reproducible
  • Objective evidence requires an objective process


Goals of Science (4)

  1. Describe
  2. Predict
  3. Determine Cause
  4. Explain


What is good scientific Research? (8)

  • Based on the work of others
  • can be replicated
  • Is generalisable to other settings
  • Is based on some logical rationale and tied to theory
  • Is doable
  • Generates new questions
  • Is incremental
  • Is an apolitical activity


What does all Good Research have in common?

  • The process taken to find the truth is based on the scientific method
  • If the process is sound then the conclusion will be sound


Hypothetic-Deductive Model of Scientific Research

  • Karl Popper: The Logic of Scientific Discovery
  • he said "there are no statements in science which cannot be tested"
  • suggested falsification of theories could demonstrate them as untrue
  • Theories in principle could not be proven only refuted


Can we ever know the absolute truth?

  • the Scientific method is the best method available for establishing the truth
  • it is an objective way of observing, thinking about and solving problems.


The Process of the Scientific Method (8)

  1. Asking the Question
  2. Identifying Important Factors
  3. Formulating a Hypothesis
  4. Collecting Relevant Information
  5. Testing the hypothesis
  6. Working with the Hypothesis
  7. Reconsider the Theory
  8. Asking a new Question


The Scientific Process - Asking a Question

  • Arise as a result of curiosity or need to find an answer
  • Questions guide the direction a research field takes



The Scientific Process - Identifying Important Factors

Factors should:

  • Not have been investigated previously
  • Contribute to understanding
  • Available to investigate
  • Hold interest personally and/or professionally
  • Lead to other questions

Important factors could be:

Age, gender, experience, motivations for dangerous driving, campaign valence


The Scientific Process - Formulating a hypothesis

  • A Hypothesis is an educated guess; If, then, else
  • are declarative
  • posit an expected relationship
  • reflect theory and literature
  • brief and to the point
  • are testable



The Scientific Process - Collecting Relevant Information

  • We set out to test hypotheses not to prove them
  • We aim to reveal the truth (as much as possible) whether we like the result or not
  • Being wrong isn't bad it just leads to more questions
  • Always ask another question


The Scientific Process - Testing the Hypothesis

•How do you know if you have a difference or not?

•How do we know its not just random differences?

  • Inferential Statistics allow us to assign probability level to our findings
  • Allows us to figure out if the effect we are seeing is real or due to chance or something else.



The Scientific Process - Working with the hypothesis

  • Does your data support your hypothesis
  • Results provide a valuable outcome either way
  • Do the scientific community value null results?


Inferential Statistics

  • provide ways of testing the reliability of the findings of a study
  • Allows us to "infer" characteristics from a small sample population onto much larger the populations.


Null Hypothesis

  • The hypothesis that there is no significant difference between specified populations, any observed difference being due to sampling or experimental error


The Scientific Process - Reconsider the Theory

  • All theories are tentative - they evolve over time
  • Observations in science must be replicable
  • Science acknowledges it is fallible
  • Nothing is ever proved absolutely
  • Scientists remain alert to alternative explanations


All Theories are Tentative - They evolve over time

  • Observations in science must be replicable
  • Science acknowledges it is fallible
  • Nothing is ever proved absolutely
  • Scientists/researchers remain sceptical and alert to alternative explanations
  • Science and research are essentially a matter of attitude
    • a genuine desire to understand the way things are


Observations in Science must be replicable