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Psychology Essays

Chelsea Delos Santos Homework 1 (20 pts. ) Part I (6 pts. ) Experiments: Identifying Variables and Groups In each of the examples, identify the independent variable and dependent variable as well as which participants make up the experimental group and which make up the control group. Remember: Independent Variable = What the investigator manipulates; the particular treatment or condition the investigator is most interested in the effects of Dependent Variable = What is measured or observed; the “data” collected in the experiment Experimental Group = Those participants exposed to the independent variable
Control Group = Those participants treated just like the experimental group EXCEPT they are not exposed to the independent variable; the group with which the experimental group can be compared 1) Of 100 individuals with moderate depression, 50 receive 8 weeks of a new cognitive-behavioral therapy, while the other 50 are placed on a waiting list for 8 weeks. At the end of the 8 weeks all 100 are given psychological tests to assess their level of depression. Independent Variable? (explain): The independent variable is the cognitive-behavioral therapy given to 50 of the individuals.
This is the independent variable because this is what the investigator is manipulating and most interested in analyzing the effects from it. Dependent Variable? (explain): The dependent variable is the measureable affects of the people that have taken the cognitive-behavioral therapy. This will be their level of depression after have received the therapy Experimental Group? (explain): The experimental group is the 50 individuals that are receiving the therapy for their depression. This group is the where observable data is collected to prove whether the hypothesis is correct or not. Control Group? explain): The control group is the other 50 individuals that are currently on the “waiting-list” to receive the therapy. They do not receive the independent variable. The data observed from their behavior will also show if the hypothesis is correct or not. 2) A biopsychologist is studying the effects of anabolic steroids on the aggressive behavior of female rats. 24 female rats receive daily injections of a placebo (fake drug), while 24 others receive daily injections of the steroid. Round-the-clock videotapes of the communal cages of all rats allow all aggressive encounters to be counted and timed.
Independent Variable? (explain): The independent variable is the steroids given to the female rats. This is variable that can be manipulated and is the main factor that the bio psychologist wants to study the effects of. Dependent Variable? (explain): The dependent variable is the amount of aggressive encounters that is counted while all the rats are in the cage together. This is the measureable behavior that will either deny or confirm the hypothesis of steroids causing aggressive behavior. Experimental Group? (explain): The experimental group is the 24 rats that receive the steroids.
If these rats show aggressive actions, this will prove that the steroids do cause aggressiveness. Control Group? (explain):The controlled group is the 24 rats that receive the placebo of the steroids. The rats might think that they are receiving steroids therefore acting as those that did. Their actions will show whether the hypothesis is correct or if aggressiveness comes from something other than steroids. 3) An industrial psychologist is interested in whether lowering the temperature in a packing room will increase productivity (number of products packed). Workers in two equivalent packing rooms participate in the study.
One room  is maintained at 65 degrees, the other room is left at the usual company temperature of 76 degrees. Independent Variable? (explain): The independent variable is the colder temperature of the room that half of the workers will be in. The temperature will be at 65? which has been manipulated from the original temperature of 76?. Dependent Variable? (explain): The dependent variable is the amount of packing that will be completed. The amount of packing represents the data on how affective the change in room temperature is. Experimental Group? (explain): The experimental group is the group of workers that are in the 65? oom. They are the ones that have received the independent variable. Control Group? (explain):The controlled group is the group that stayed in the regular 76? room and continued working. This is the group that does not receive the independent variable. 4) Big Pharma Drug Company is conducting research of their new drug Attendomax to improve the note-taking behavior of college students diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Fifty of the students receive capsules contain Attendomax, another fifty receive capsules which look the same but actually contain the drug Ritalin which has been used for many years.
All students attend the same series of lectures and have their notes collected afterwards. Notes are scored for completeness and accuracy. Independent Variable? (explain): The independent variable is the Attendomax that will be given to the college students with ADHD. Dependent Variable? (explain): The dependent variable will be the quantity and the quality of the notes taken by the students who received the Attendomax. Experimental Group? (explain): The experimental group is the students that are receiving the Attendomax. They are the ones being experimented on to see if this new capsule helps the students.
Control Group? (explain):The control group is the students that are receiving the original Ritalin that is usually given to people with ADHD. They don’t receive the independent variable. 5) Here is your opportunity to describe an experiment of your own creation: I would like to investigate the effects of Metal Rock Music On this behavior: Rebellious behavior against authority Half my participants would Listen to Metal Rock music everyday for about a week. They would listen to the music for at least two hours everyday undisturbed along with having metal rock music in the background while they do other activities.
After this week the participants will have to participate in a drill that causes them to take orders from authority. while the others would Listen to classical music for the same amount of time for a week. At the end of the week the participants will be put in drill that causes them to receive orders from authority. Independent Variable? (explain): The independent variable is the metal rock music that the participants must listen to. Dependent Variable? (explain): The dependent variable is the amount of rebellious actions that the students portray against authority.
Experimental Group? (explain): The experimental group is the participants that are listening to the rock music. Control Group? (explain): The control group is the participants that are not listening to the rock music. Part II (6 pts. ) Correlational vs Experimental Studies For each of the following, decide whether it is a correlational study or an experiment. If it is a correlational study decide what type of correlation was observed and briefly EXPLAIN. If it is an experiment, identify the independent variable manipulated by the researcher and briefly EXPLAIN. Explanations can be a sentence or two. ) Remember: Correlational research looks for some relation between 2 or more sets of data. Even if such a relationship is found, no cause-effect conclusions can be drawn. Positive correlation: the relationship is such that high scores in one data set tend to be associated with high scores in another data set (and low scores tend to be associated with low scores) Negative correlation: the relationship is inverse; that is, high scores in one data set tend to be associated with low scores in the other data set, and visa versa.
Experiment: under carefully controlled conditions researcher compares the responses of participants exposed to an intentionally manipulated independent variable to the responses of participants not exposed to that independent variable. 1) After administering a test of self-esteem to all the 6th graders in a school, the school psychologist has 6th grade teachers monitor the number of times each 6th grader voluntarily participates in class (answering questions, offering opinions) and determined the lower the self-esteem score of the child, the less they participated. Type of study: Correlational
Type of correlation OR Independent variable – explain The correlation is between the amount of times a student voluntarily participated and their self-esteem level. There can’t be an actual conclusion because there may be other factors on why the student did not answer the questions given. This is a positive correlation 2) A survey study conducted in England found that wealthy women between the ages of 30 and 50 reported more frequent sex, more orgasms, and more enjoyment of sex than women of the same age from poorer households. Type of study: Correlational Type of correlation OR Independent variable –explain
The correlation is between women between 30-50 having of a certain economical household and the amount of sex or orgasms they obtain. A conclusion can’t be made based on their economical status and the amount of sex that they have. This is negative correlation. 3) A cognitive psychologist tests students’ ability to recall of textbook material studied for thirty minutes under either noisy or quiet conditions. Type of study:Experimental Type of correlation OR Independent variable – explain The independent variable is the noisy conditions. The students are being tested on how well they can remember material under certain circumstances. ) Using photographs, a social psychologist had participants rate the attractiveness as well as the perceived competence of 50 individuals. Those individuals rated as the most attractive were also rated as the most competent. Type of study: Correlational Type of correlation OR Independent variable — explain The correlation is between the level of attractiveness and the level of competence. This is a positive correlation. 5) After observing and treating hundreds of patients, Dr. Bashir has come to the conclusion that the larger the ridges on a Klingon’s forehead, the lower their self-control when provoked. Type of study: Correlational
Type of correlation OR Independent variable – explain The correlation is between the size on ridges on Klingon’s head and their level of self-control when provoked. This is a negative correlation. Part III (8 points) (2 ? to 4 pages) Describe a theory you would like to explore in more depth that has to do with psychobiology, sensation, perception, or consciousness (Chapters 2-3-4). Remember that a theory is a kind of picture of reality. And that the picture has several components that relate to one another. Out of this picture, you should be able to come up with a testable hypothesis, one that could be falsified.
Example theory: Adler’s theory that depending on whether you are first-born and the youngest or anything in between will determine your political affiliations. So, go ahead and form an hypothesis(es) that might be realistic. Now you will need to choose a research design, one that is appropriate to the hypothesis you wish to investigate. a. justify your choice. b. what/who will be your sample? c. how will you collect data? d. identify and operationally define the variables you will attempt to measure. e. how will you deal with bias? Chelsea Delos Santos Psychology 1000 /24/12 Behavioral Psychology The study of behavioral psychology has two main notions that justified why humans acted a certain way. There is the idea of classical conditioning which is consists of stimuli and the reactions to a certain stimulus. For example, there is John B. Watson’s experiment with baby Albert that involved a lab rat and a loud noise. Each time that baby was revealed to the lab rat he was also exposed a loud noise. After a certain amount of this same procedure, he then became terrified of the rat itself because he conditioned it with the roaring noise.
The other idea of behavioral psychology is operant conditioning, which is what Edward Thorn-dike researched with a cat and food. Operant conditioning requires either a positive or negative augmentation with each operation. I have managed my our own theory on a certain operant conditioning. I predicted that by an example of a currently used behavioral approach to psychology is setting up an incentive system in order to get your child to do chores. They do a chore, they get a token, at the end of a certain amount of time they turn their tokens in for something larger (money, an outing, whatever).
Behavioral psychology believes that we LEARN by manipulating (not necessarily in a negative way) the situation to provoke the desired behavior, and if it happens over and over, the person has learned it and ultimately won’t need to have the situation manipulated anymore. This sprung from Pavlov’s research with dogs (rang the bell, gave them food, later rang the bell and sometimes gave them food, eventually they salivated every time he rang the bell even though he’d stopped giving them food after it). The experiment is very relevant because as parents, you want your child to do their chores without being told eventually .
This experiment will expound a suitable way to encourage your children to do stuff with out being told to do so. The independent variable is the positive reinforcements that are given to the child when they do their chores. For example, when your child does their chore they get allowance or a token. If they don’t do what they are told , they receive neither an allowance nor punishment. After the process has gone on continuously the positive reinforcements will then stop. When they do chores , the child will no longer get allowance at all.
The affects from this will be the dependent variable. Depending on how many chores they do after the reinforcements have stopped is the data will be collected. The dependent variable will prove whether or not my hypothesis is right or not. If the child continues to do chores without being told after the positive reinforcements have stopped then my hypothesis will be proven correct. The difficult part with this experiment is the fact that there may be other factors that the child is dealing with that allows them not to fully understand the positive reinforcement they are being given.
To deal with this problem, each of the child will be given a chore at the beginning and end of the week that consists of them to clean their room, laundry, dishes, etc. This test will fully show if the experiment was successful and it was based on the positive reinforcements that produced better listening habits. If the child stops doing chores after the reinforcement has stopped then this experiment will have shown that although the hypothesis is correct on producing better listening habits it also shows that these habits are only plausible when there are positive reinforcements.
The process of operant conditioning is greatly influenced on the type of reinforcements and the level of reward of discipline given. This experiment will justify one way to produce attentive listeners and more responsible children. The predilection will show the contrast in reaction that each child takes from the reinforcements. Behavioral psychology is very extensive but also a way to start thinking about why people around us do what they do to their children by disciplining. Regardless of the other peoples’ viewpoints , behavioral perspective is more valid when doing an experiment.

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