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AP Psych Ch 01

What Is Psychology?

psychology the scientific study of behavior and mental processes
behavior an observable action
monism seeing mind and body as different aspects of the same thing
dualism seeing mind and body as two different things that interact
eclectic use of techniques and ideas from a variety of approaches
empiricism the view that knowledge should be acquired through observation and often an experiment
science way of getting knowledge about the world based on observation
theory a collection of interrelated ideas and facts put forward to describe, explain, and predict behavior and mental processes
scientific method in psychology, the techniques used to discover knowledge about human behavior and mental processes
hypothesis a tentative statement or idea expressing a causal relationship between two events or variables that is to be evaluated in a research study
experiment a procedure in which a researcher systematically manipulates and observes elements of a situation in order to test a hypothesis and make a cause-and-effect statement
independent variable the variable in a controlled experiment that the experimenter directly and purposefully manipulates to see how the other variables under study will be affected
dependent variable the variable in a controlled experiment that is expected to change due to the manipulation of the independent variable
experimental group in an experiment, the group of participants to whom a treatment is given
control group subjects and not exposed to a changing variable in an experiment
variable a condition or characteristic of a situation or a person that is subject to change (it varies) within or across situations or individuals
sample a group of participants who are assumed to be representative of the population about which an inference is being made
random sample selection of a part of the population without reason; participation is by chance
operational definition a definition of a variable in terms of the set of methods or procedures used to measure or study that variable
participant an individual who takes part in an experiment and whose behavior is observed as part of the data collection process
double-blind procedure technique in which neither the persons involved for those conducting the experiment know in what group to participate is involved
debriefing a procedure to inform participants about the true nature of an experiment after its completion
ethics rules of proper and acceptable conduct that investigators use to guide psychological research
ethnocentrism tendency to believe that one's own group is the standard, the reference point by which other people and groups should be judged
case study a highly detailed description of a single individual or a vent
ex post facto study describes differences between groups of participants that differ naturally on a variable such as race or gender
naturalistic observation observing and recording behavior naturally without trying to manipulate and control the situation
correlational research establish the relationship between two variables
survey research the measurement of public opinion through the use of sampling and questioning
experimenter bias expectation of the person conducting an experiment which may be affect the outcome
observer bias expectations of an observer which may distort an authentic observation
response bias preconceived notions of a person answering [a survey] which may alter the experiments purpose
informed consent the agreement of participants to take part in an experiment and their acknowledgement that they understand the nature of their participation in the research, and have been fully informed about the general nature of the research, its goals, and methods
normal distribution approximate distribution of scores expected when a sample is taken from a large population, drawn as a frequency polygon that often takes the form of a bell-shaped curve, called the normal curve
placebo typically a pill that is used as a control in the experiment; a sugar pill
pseudoscience an unscientific system which pretends to discover psychological information that his means are unscientific or deliberately fraudulent
representative sample selection of a part of the population which mirrors the current demographics
significant difference in an experiment, a difference that is unlikely to have occurred because of chance alone and is inferred to be most likely due to the systematic manipulations of variables by the researcher
self-fulfilling prophecy when a researcher's expectations unknowingly create a situation that affects the results
statistics branch of mathematics that deals with collecting, classifying, and analyzing data
descriptive statistics general set of procedures used to summarize, condense, and describe sets of data
frequency distribution a chart or array of scores, usually arranged from highest to lowest, showing the number of instances for each score
frequency polygon graph of a frequency distribution that shows the number of instances of obtained scores, usually with the data points connect by straight lines
measure of central tendency a descriptive statistic that tells which result or score best represents an entire set of scores
mean the arithmetic average of a set of scores
median the measure of central tendency that is the data point with 50% of the scores above it and 50% below it
mode the most frequently occurring score in a set of data
range the spread between the highest and the lowest scores in a distribution
correlation coefficient a number that expresses the degree and direction of the relationship between 2 variables, ranging from -1 to +1
inferential statistics procedures used to draw conclusions about larger populations from small samples of data
normal distribution approximate distribution of scores expected when a sample is taken from a large population, drawn as a frequency polygon that often takes the form of a bell-shaped curve, called the normal curve
standard deviation a descriptive statistic that measures the variability of data from the mean of the sample
variability the extent to which scores differ from one another
structuralism school of psychological thought that considered the structure and elements of conscious experience to be the proper subject matter of psychology
introspection a person's description and analysis of what he or she is thinking and feeling or what he or she has just thought about
functionalism school of psychological thought that was concerned with how and why the conscious mind works
psychoanalytic perspective developed by freud, which assumes that psychological problems are the result of anxiety resulting from unresolved conflicts and forces of which a person might be unaware
Gestalt psychology school of psychological thought that argued that behavior cannot be studied in parts but must be viewed a s whole
behaviorism perspective that defines psychology as the study of behavior that is directly observable or through assessment instruments
cognitive psychology perspective that focuses on the mental processes involved in perception, learning, memory, and thinking
humanistic psychology perspective that emphasizes the uniqueness of the individual and the idea that humans have free will
self-actualization the human need to fulfill one's potential
sociocultural psychology perspective concerned with how cultural differences affect behavior
evolutionary psychology perspective that seeks to explain and predict behaviors by analyzing how the human brain developed over time, how it functions, and how input from the environment affects human behaviors
positive psychology an emerging theory in psychology that focuses on positive experiences
psychologist professional who studies behavior and uses behavioral principles in scientific research or in applied settings
clinical psychologist psychologist who treats people serious psychological problems or conducts research into the causes of behavior
counseling psychologist psychologist who treats people with adjustment problems
psychiatrist a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders
psychoanalyst one who uses psychoanalysis to treat psychological problems
developmental psychologist studies psychological development across the lifespan
educational psychologist focuses on how effective teaching and learning take place
engineering psychologist does research on how people function best with machines
forensic psychologist applies psychological concepts to legal issues
health psychologist focuses on psychological factors in illness
industrial/organizational psychologist applies psychological principles to the workplace to improve productivity and the quality of work life
neuropsychologist concerned with the relationship between brain/nervous system and behavior
psychometrician focuses on methods of acquiring and analyzing data
school psychologist assesses and counsels students, consults with educators and parents, and performs behavioral intervention when necessary
social psychologist focuses on how the individual's behavior and mental processes are affected by interactions with other people
sports psychologist helps athletes improve their focus, increase motivation, and deal with anxiety and fear of failure
confounding variable anything that causes a difference between the IV and the DV other than the independent variable
demand characteristics clues participants discover about the purpose of a study that suggest how they should respond
placebo effect response to the belief that the IV will have an effect, rather than the IV's actual effect, which can be a confounding variable
percentile score the percentage of scores at or below a certain score
replication the repetition of an experiment to test the validity of its conclusion
population all of the individuals in the group to which a study applies
Created by: doyleqhs