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NSU Psych 101

NSU Chapter 2

TermDefinition
theory A broad idea or set of closely related ideas that attempts to explain certain observations.
variable Anything that can change
operational definition An objective description of how a research variable is going to be measured and observed
hypothesis An idea that is arrived at logically from a theory. It is a prediction that can be tested.
population The entire group about which the investigator wants to draw conclusions.
sample The subset of the population chosen by the investigator for study.
naturalistic observation Observation of behavior in real-world settings with no effort made to manipulate or control the situation.
standardized test A test that requires people to answer a series of written or oral questions or sometimes both.
case study An in-depth look at a single individual; also known as a case history.
correlational research A research strategy that identifies the relationships between two or more variables in order to describe how these variables change together.
longitudinal design A special kind of systematic observation that involves obtaining measures of the variables of interest in multiple waves over time.
true experiment A carefully regulated procedure in which one or more variables believed to influence the behavior being studied are manipulated while all other variables are held constant.
independent variable The manipulated experimental factor in an experiment.
dependent variable A factor that can change in an experiment in response to changes in the independent variable.
experimental group A group in the research study whose experience is manipulated.
control group A comparison group that is as much like the experimental group as possible and is treated in every way like the experimental group except for the manipulated factor.
descriptive statistics Mathematical procedures that are used to descirbe and summarize sets of data in a meaningful way.
mean A statistical measure of central tendency that is calculated by adding all the scores and then dividing by the number of scores.
median A statistical measure of central tendency that falls exactly in the middle of a distribution of scores after they have been arranged or ranked from highest to lowest.
mode A statistical measure of central tendency: the score that occurs most often.
range A statistical measure of variability that is the distance between the highest and lowest scores.
standard deviation A statistical measure of variability that involves how much the scores vary on the average around the mean of the sample.
Created by: Sadiqah on 2008-08-16



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