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Psychology: Core Concepts 2016

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Tania Young

on 16 September 2016

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Transcript of Psychology: Core Concepts 2016

Research Methods
Things you need to know:
Course Code: PSYC15065G
Instructor: Tania Young
E-mail: tania.young@sheridanc.on.ca
Textbook:
Psychology: An Exploration
2nd Canadian Edition
Ciccarelli, White, Fritzley & Harrigan, (2016)
What is Psychology?
Perspectives in Psychology
Key Issues in Psychology
Nature vs. Nurture
Observable Behaviour vs. Internal Mental Processes
Free Will vs. Determinism
Conscious vs. Unconscious
Individual Differences vs. Universal Principles

Psychology: Core Concepts
Evaluation Plan:
3 tests @ 20% each
(weeks 5, 9, & 14)
2 Assignments @ 15% each
(weeks 7 & 12)
2 in-class quizzes/assignments @ 5% each
(at my discretion)
Distractions and Disruptions
are not appreciated by other
Students or your Instructor!
Try to be on time
Laptops closed
No Headphones
Cell Phones silent - No Texting
Side Conversations at a minimum
1. Description: What is happening?

2. Explanation: Why is it happening?

3. Prediction: When will it happen again?

4. Control: How can it be changed?
Goals of Psychology
Psychology is the scientific study of behaviour and mental processes:
thoughts
perceptions
feelings
memories
biological activities
The Psychodynamic Perspective
Sigmund Freud
(1856-1939)
Tell me about your mother...
Behaviour is motivated by inner forces and conflicts
Developed something he called 'the talking cure' aka Psychoanalysis
Free association
Hypnosis
The Behavioural Perspective
grew out of a rejection of the emphasis
on the inner working of the mind - focused
only on observable behaviour - things
that can be seen and measured objectively
Ivan Pavlov
(1849-1936)
John B. Watson (1878 - 1958)
B.F. Skinner (1904 - 1990)
Believed that behaviour is primarily
shaped by learning and also that
learning is primarily shaped by the
consequences to behaviour
a reaction against behaviourism
humans strive to grow and develop
Emphasis on free will
Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs
The Humanist Perspective
Abraham Maslow (1908 - 1970)
Jean Piaget (1896-1980)
The Cognitive Perspective
grew out of a dissatisfaction with behaviourism
all humans strive to grow and develop and be in control of their lives and behaviours
looks at how thought and language affect behaviour
Albert Bandura (1925 - )
The Biological Perspective
views behaviour from a biological standpoint
how do genetics and heredity play a part in our behaviour and our choices
do neural structures and biochemistry impact our behaviour?
Sociocultural Perspective
study social roles and relationships along with cultural norms, values, and expectations
the effect that people have on each other
the impact of environment and culture on behaviour
are differences due to income level? Culture? Gender?
Philip Zimbardo
Solomon Asch
Stanley Milgram
Evolutionary Perspective
focus on the biological basis for universal mental characteristics that all humans share
general mental strategies
why do humans lie?
why is the fear of snakes universal?
Nature
vs.
Nurture
Psychology as a Science
Read pages 1-22 in Textbook
do the quizzes
read the sidebars
an approach that involves the systematic acquisition of knowledge and understanding about behaviour and other phenomenon of interest
using the scientific method can reduce bias and error in the measurement of data
researchers need to see what is

really
there, not what their biases might want them to see!
Psychology uses the Scientific Method
Some good ways to start scientific
questions:
what is the relationship between.....?
what factors cause.....?
what is the effect of.....?
A good scientific
question is one that
can be answered by direct
observations or with scientific tools
Make an educated guess........this is called a hypothesis!
What do you think the answer is?
your hypothesis should explain what you expect to happen during your experiment or research
it is possible to have more than one answer to a question!
Examples:
Question: Why do only some people get skin cancer?
Hypothesis: People who wear sunscreen reduce their risk of cancer

Question: Why do some people get sick a lot, while others do not?
Hypothesis: People who wash their hands regularly do not get sick as
frequently as people who do not regularly wash their hands
What's the difference between
a hypothesis and a theory?
Hypothesis:
specific, testable prediction about what you expect to happen in your study
makes a specific prediction about a specified set of circumstances
Speculative guess that hasn't been tested yet
Theory:
well established
principle to explain some
aspect of the natural world
predicts events in general terms
extensively tested and generally accepted by the scientific community and the world at large
uses existing data in order to test a hypothesis
Archival Research
census documents
newspaper articles
college records
government databases
Observation of people or animals in a laboratory setting
Laboratory Observation
allows researcher to control more of the variables
Pitfalls:
artificial behaviour - animals and people react differently in the lab especially if they are aware that someone is watching.....
in-depth, intensive investigation of an individual or small group of people
allows tremendous amount of detail
Case Study
Pitfalls:
people and situations are not always predictable enough to apply the results to everyone
too many variables
a sample of people are asked a series of questions about their behaviour, thoughts, and attitudes in order to represent a larger population
Survey Research
a very straightforward way of getting information - just ask for it!

very accurate
Pitfalls:
people have poor memories!
distortion of truth
courtesy bias
observation of naturally occurring behaviour without intervention
Naturalistic Observation
researcher is passive - simply records what occurs
Pitfalls:
Observer Effect:
animals and people who know they're being watched don't behave the way they normally would
Observer Bias:
researcher has expectations of what behaviours they want to see and so they make observations that support their expectations and ignore things that don't
examines the relationship between variables in order to see if they are associated, or 'correlated'
e.g. studying and grades - are they related?
Correlational Research
Pitfalls:
correlation does not mean causation
inability to demonstrate cause-and-effect relationships
Finding Relationships
Correlations:
allow a researcher to determine if there is a relationship between two or more variables
Experiments:
allow a researcher to determine if there is a cause-and-effect relationship between two or more variables
Leon Festinger
When you're studying, focus on:
Tests require you to know content from class lectures AND the textbook
Study Skills:
Summarizing
Synthesizing
Making connections
Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse!
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