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Wes and Stuff

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By rebeccajane1981
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PY 354-Introduction to Psychological Research
Spring, 2013

This exam will evaluate how well you understand the material in the class so far. It covers the information presented in Chapters 1-4 of the McBride text, as well as the course notes that I have provided. You may use your book, notes, or outside resources to help you with your exam, but you may NOT consult with each other. Also, do not simply copy/paste information from any source…put things into your own words and use your own examples!!! Evidence of copy/paste or other forms of plagiarism will result in a score of 0 for the exam. If you use an outside source, cite it properly and provide an APA style reference list at the end of your exam. (100 points)

Part A: Research Scenarios—Read each scenario carefully. At times, I may ask for a definite answer and at other times, a potential answer. Each scenario is worth 10 points.

A researcher wants to examine the effects of LSD on complex learning in rats. One group of rats was given a very small dose that would be unlikely to cause any behavioral effects. The second group of rats was given a larger dose of the drug. Both groups of rats then ran through a complex maze several times. 10/10

a. What is the independent variable (s) and is it a true or subject variable: The independent variable would be the different amounts of LSD given to the rats. This is a true variable.

b. What is the dependent variable(s): The dependent variable is the time it took the rats to run through the maze.

c. Name some of the possible control variables: The maze is an control variable.

d. What would you have done differently? I would have had a third set of rats that were not given any amount of LSD and timed how long it took them to run the same maze.

A social psychologist is interested in helping behavior. This researcher is particularly interested in how group size affects whether or not an individual will help someone else in the group. A study was conducted to assess the question. 10/10

a. What would be the IV(s) and would it be a true or subject variable: The sizes of the groups would be a true variable. The personalities of people in those groups would be a subject variable. Whether groups are all male, all female, or a mix, and the ages of people in the groups would be true variables. The first is correctly inferred from the example, but the others might fit better into the “how would you conduct the study?” section.

b. What would be the DV(s): The dependent variable would be whether or not someone helps the other person in the group.

c. Name some possible control variables: Some control variables would be the room, the person needing help, the way they ask for help or act like they need help.

d. How would you conduct this study? I would run the scenario with different groups sizes starting at two people. I would start off by separating men from women and seeing if that makes a difference with people stepping up to help. Then I would run it again using more men than women and then more women than men.

Doctor Daze has just completed an experiment on the influence of gender and exposure to violent television on the aggressiveness of preschool age children. He had the children watch either a violent or a non-violent cartoon. He then recorded the number of aggressive encounters the children engaged in in a 30 minute period. 10/10

a. Independent variable(s) and type (true or subject): The difference in the violence levels in the cartoons shown to the children would be a true variable. The gender of the children would be a subject variable.

b. Dependent variable(s): If the children showed increased aggressiveness after watching the cartoons.

c. Possible control variables: The room the children are in, the amount of time used to determine aggressiveness. The cartoons used, if the all the children where showed either the same non-violent or violent cartoon.

d. What would you do differently: I would take a third group of children and not show them anything to see if aggressiveness in in of itself is a trait of preschool age children.

A statistics teacher wanted to compare two methods of teaching introductory statistics. One method relied heavily on teaching the theory behind statistics (theory method). The other method consisted of teaching the student various statistical tests and explaining when to use each test (the cookbook method). The teacher found that a leading engineering school was using the theory method in all of its introductory statistics classes and that a state teachers college was using the cookbook method in all of its classes. At the end of the semester, the teacher administered a standardized statistics test to both sets of classes. The results indicated that the classes that received the theory method performed better than did the classes that received the cookbook method. The teacher concluded that the theory method was the superior method and that it should be adopted by statistics teachers. 7/10

a. Independent variable(s) and type (true or subject): The schools, the professors, and the students taking the statistics classes, and they way each class is taught are all subject variables. The only thing mentioned in the above example that would be the IV is the method of teaching. The researcher did not mention an interest in the other things (more appropriate in the What would you do differently? Section)

b. Dependent variable(s): The dependent variable is which method is better the theory method or the cookbook method. Test performance

c. Possible control variables: The control variable could be test the research gave each class. ?

d. What would you do differently: I wouldn't pick two different “levels” of education and two different teachers teaching it. I would either test both at the state college level or Engineering level, I would make sure that each method was taught the same way.

Part II: Read the summary of the research article that appears on the next page of the exam and answer the following questions: (30 pts.)

a. What is the independent variable(s) and its levels? Is it a true or subject variable? b. What is the dependent variable(s)? c. What type of control variables were or could be used? d. What type of research procedure (method) was used (e.g., experiment, survey, etc.) e. What was the hypothesis being tested? f. Did the results support the hypothesis? g. Do you think this was a good study? Explain your answer. Research example: Anorexia Nervosa

Clinton, D. N., & McKinley, W. W. (1986). Attitudes to food, eating, and weight in acutely ill and recovered anorectics. British Journal of Clinical Psychology, 25,

Article summary: Anorexia nervosa is a condition characterized by chronic failure to eat for fear of gaining weight. The chief symptom is extreme loss of weight brought on by refusing food or by eating and then ejecting food through (self-induced) vomiting or consumption of laxatives. Other symptoms include periods of overactivity and distorted attitudes toward food and eating. The anorexic is typically female and between the ages of 12 and 18 at time of onset. Severe cases of anorexia nervosa, unless treated, may result in death.

The authors of the present study suggested that although clinical intervention may result in improved weight gain among acutely ill anorexics, nevertheless, the “recovered” anorexic is likely to continue to show evidence of “distorted attitudes to food, eating, and weight.” To test this idea the investigators administered the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT) to four groups of females: acutely ill anorexics (n=15), recovered anorexics (n=14), psychiatric controls (n=10), and normals (n=24). Both the acutely ill and recovered anorexics were shown to be similar at time of onset, although the recovered group had been slightly younger (15.7 years) at the time of onset than the currently ill group (17.3 years). For example, the average weight loss (in terms of percentage of matched population mean weight) was 31.1 percent for the acutely ill and had been 34.4 percent for the recovered group. To obtain the recovered sample, 26 former patients meeting the study’s selection criteria were contacted; 6 could not be located, 2 refused to participate, and 4 failed to make appointments, resulting in 14 recovered individuals who received the EAT. Mean length of time since discharge for the recovered group was 42.6 months. The psychiatric controls were patients hospitalized for a variety of disorders, including schizophrenia and depression, but who showed no evidence of eating disorder. The normals were nursing students who showed no evidence of eating disorder or other psychiatric disturbance based on responses to a brief questionnaire designed by the authors. The mean ages of the four groups were not significantly different based on a between-subjects ANOVA.

The EAT is intended to measure both behavioral (e.g., vomiting, dieting) and attitudinal aspects of anorexia nervosa. Subjects responded to 40 statements using a 6-point scale ranging from “very often” to “never”. Mean scores (and standard deviations) for the four groups (higher numbers indicated more extreme responses) were: anorexics 51.5 (30.7); recovered anorexics 31.8 (28.8); psychiatric controls, 13.6 (10.05); and normals, 7.9 (4.7). The results of a one-way ANOVA were statistically significant. A post-hoc test (Scheffe) revealed that the acutely ill females had statistically higher EAT scores than did the psychiatric females or the normal females. The EAT scores of the currently ill and recovered subjects were not significantly different, although the recovered group had significantly higher scores than did the normals. The authors concluded that the present treatments for anorexia nervosa, although successful in treating gross physical and behavioral symptoms, leave the distorted attitudes associated with this condition relatively unaltered. Important questions for future research are whether these attitudes serve to slow down treatment, contribute to relapse rates, or are distressing in themselves to the individuals. 27/30

h. What is the independent variable(s) and its levels? Is it a true or subject variable? There are no independent variables The IV is the recovery status of the 4 different groups studied (subject) i. What is the dependent variable(s)? The dependent variable is that even though treatment results in weight gain among anorexics, they continue to have a distorted view of food. j. What type of control variables were or could be used? The controls were the psychiatric control group and the EAT tests. The group is a control, but not a control “variable”…it is part of the IV. k. What type of research procedure (method) was used (e.g., experiment, survey, etc.) I believe the test would fall under the survey method. This is actually a quasi-experiment because the researchers are interested in seeing how recovery status impacts eating attitudes, not general eating attitudes of the general public. l. What was the hypothesis being tested? The hypotheses was that treatment does not address the distorted attitude that accompanies anorexia nervosa. m. Did the results support the hypothesis? The results would seem to support the hypothesis. n. Do you think this was a good study? I believe this was a good study. The researchers used several types of participants in the research. They used “regular” people as well as people with anorexia nervosa. They also used people in different stages of treatment and with different levels of anorexia, which would give them a variety of responces to the EAT test. Because they found only one group, the acutely ill anorexics, to be significant

Part C: Short answer essays—Answer any three (3) of the following questions. (10 points each).

1. Describe the different ways of gaining knowledge about the world. 10/10 There are several ways for us to gain knowledge about the world. The first way is intuition, which means to rely on common sense a way to gain knowledge. (McBride, 2013) The second way is involves using deduction. Deduction is using logical reasoning and current knowledge. The third way is using authority or using a reliable person or group to help us obtain knowledge. The last method is observation, using what you see or experience to learn about the world around you. (McBride, 2013)

2. List and describe the different types of validity. The four types of validity are internal and external validity, construct validity, and face validity. External validity is to what extent the results of the research applies to people and realistic behaviors outside of the initial study. Internal validity means how much the study provides everyday information about behavior. (McBride, 2013) Construct validity means that a study measures the behavior it's supposed to measure. Face validity is a measure of how typical a research project is at face value and if it seems to be a good project. (Shuttleworth, 2009) 10/10

3. List the different types of dependent variables. The two different types of dependent variables are the predictor variable and the outcome variable. Physiological, behavioral, and verbal. 5/10

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