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Myers 9 Chapter 1

Bell West / Thinking Critically with Psychological Science

QuestionAnswer
Critical Thinking Thinking that does not blindly accept arguments and conclusions, rather it examines assumptions, discerns hidden values evaluates evidences and assesses conclusions
theory An explanation using an intergrated set of principles that organizes observations and predicts behaviors or events
hypothesis A testable prediction, often implied by a theory
operational definition A statement of the procedures(operations)used to define research variables. For example, human intelligence may be operationally defined as what a intelligent test measures.
replication Repeating the essence of a research study, usually with differnt participants in diffent situations, to see whether the basic findings extends to other participants and circumstances
Case Study An observation technique in which one person is studied in depth in the hope of revealing universal principles
Survey A technique for ascertaining the self-reported attitudes or behaviors of a particular group, usually by questioning a representative, random sample of a group.
population All the cases in a group being studied, from which samples may be drawn.(Note:Expect for national studies, this does not refer to a country's whole population.)
Random Sample A sample that fairly represents a populaton because each member has an equal chance inclusion
Naturalistic observation Observing and recording behavior in naturally occuring situations without trying to manipilate and control the situation.
Correlation coefficient A statistical index of the relationship between two things (from -1 to +1)
Correlation A measure of the exent to which two factors vary together, and thus of how well either factor predicts the other
Scatterplots A graphed cluster of dots, each of which represents the values of two varibles. The slope of the points suggets the direction of the relationship between the two varibles. The amount of scatter suggests the strength of the correlation)
Experiment a research method in which an investigator
illusory correlation The perception of a relationship where none exists.
hindsight bias The tendency to believe, after learning an outcome, that one would have foreseen it. (Also known as the I-knew-it-all-along phenomenon.)
random assignment assigning participants to experimental and control groups by chance, thus minimizing preexisting differences between those assigned to the different groups.
double-blind procedure an experimental procedure in which both the research participants and the research staff are ignorant ((blind) about whether the research participants have received the treatment or a placebo. Commonly used in drug-evaluation studies.
placebo effect experimental results caused by expectations alone; any effect on behavior caused by the administration of an inert substance or condition, which the recipient assumes is an active agent.
experimental group in an experiment, the group that is exposed to the treatment, that is to one version of the independent variable.
control group in an experiment, the group that is not exposed to the treatment; contrasts with the experimental group and serves as a comparison for evaluating the effect of the treatment.
independent variable the experimental factor that is manipulated; the variable whose effect is being studied.
dependent variable the outcome factor; the variable that may change in response to manipulations of the independent variable.
mode the most frequently occurring score(s) in a distribution.
mean the arithmetic average of a distribution, obtained by adding the scores and then dividing by the number of scores.
median the middle score in a distribution; half the scores are above it and half the scores are below it.
range the difference between the highest and lowest scores in a distribution.
standard deviation a computed measure of how much scores vary around the mean score.
normal curve a symmetrical, bell-shaped curve that describes the distribution of many types of data; most scores fall near the mean (68 percent fall within one standard deviation of it) and fewer and fewer near the extremes.
statistical significance a statistical statement of how likely it is that an obtained result occurred by chance.
culture the enduring behaviors, ideas, attitudes, and traditions shared by a group of people and transmitted from one generation to the next.
Created by: rkratina on 2011-08-30



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