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# NSU Psych 101

### NSU Chapter 2

Term | Definition |
---|---|

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. |