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# Research Methods

### Vocabulary for Theme 2

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

Sample | The small group of participants, out of the total number of available, that a researcher studies. |

Naturalistic Observation | Research method in which the psychologist observes the subject in a natural setting without interfering. |

Case Study | Research method that involves an intensive investigation of one or more participants. |

Survey | Research method in which information is obtained by asking many individuals a fixed set of questions. |

Longitudinal Study | Research method in which data is collected about a group of participants over a number of years to assess how certain characteristics change or remain the same during development. |

Cross-sectional Study | Research method in which data is collected from groups of participants of different ages and compared so that conclusions can be drawn about differences due to age. |

Correlation | The measure of a relationship between two variables or sets of data. |

Hypothesis | An educated inference about the relationship between two variables. |

Variable | Any factor that is capable of change. |

Experimental Group | The group to which an independent variable is applied. |

Control Group | The group that is treated in the same way as the experimental group except that the experimental treatment [the independent variable] is not applied. |

Self-fulfilling Prophecy | A situation in which a researcher's expectations influence that person's own behavior, and thereby influence the participants behavior. |

SIngle-blind Experiment | An experiment in which the participants are unaware of which participants received the treatment. |

Double-blind Experiment | An experiment in which neither the experimenter nor the participants know which participants received which treatment. |

Placebo Effect | A change in a participant's illness or behavior that results from a belief that the treatment will have an effect, rather than the actual treatment. |

Statistics | The branch of mathematics concerned with summarizing and making meaningful inferences from collections of data. |

Descriptive Statistics | The listing and summarizing of data in a practical, efficient way. |

Frequency Distribution | An arrangement of data that indicates how often a particular score or observation occurs. |

Normal Curve | A graph of frequency distribution shaped like a symmetrical, bell-shaped curve; a graph of normal distribution. |

Central Tendency | A number that describes something about the "average" score of a distribution. |

Variance | A measure of difference, or spread. |

Standard Deviation | A measurement of variability that describes an average distance of every score from the mean. |

Correlation Coefficient | This described the direction and strength of the relationship between two sets of variables. |

Inferential Statistics | Numerical methods used to determine whether research data support a hypothesis or whether results were due to chance. |