UMD PSYC 221 - Theories and Methods in Social Psych

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1 29 Theories and Methods in Social Psych Question Preconceptions Intuition is often correct but sometimes misses the complete picture o Ex job interview pratfalls spilling coffee would think it is a bad impression but really employers like that because it shows you are a normal person not perfect Counterintuitive results findings o Hot cold beverage generosity liking Psychology as a Science Media portrayal opposites attract Facebook divorce Exaggerated claims effect size vs statistical significance Theoretical Perspectives What influences social behavior o How people behave determined by personality o How people behave determined by the immediate situation they are in library vs game vs class vs party Situation has greater effect than personality traits o Sky isn t actually BLUE diversity by species selection pressures Social neuroscience fMRI EEG methods brain activation neuro chemicals Cultural Context Time period in history geography government etc WEIRD societies Western Educated Intelligent Rich Democratic Survival of the Fittest Behavior is adaptive Nothing has inherent value or quality Biological Psychology Genes and heredity Physiology heart rate cortisol etc Personality Individual differences person x situation behavior When does personality matter More complete understanding of social behaviors Positive Psychology Known as the bright side of human behavior Emotions Joy Pride Behaviors Cooperation Love Outcomes Life Satisfaction Research Designs Correlational o Measure variables to see if they re associated graffiti and crime o Used when impossible unethical to manipulate variables o DOES NOT MEASURE CAUSATION o X predictor Y outcome o Y Z o Z Y and Z X o Used predictor variable graffiti to determine the extent of the outcome crime o CORRELATION DOES NOT EQUAL CAUSATION o Correlation 1 perfectly opposite to 0 no relationship to 1 perfect relationship Experiments Only study to conclude causality Random assignment is key Downfall lab settings are mainly artificial Internal vs External Validity Internal Validity more valued how well experimental procedure tests hypothesis if experiment does a good job testing what it should be testing External Validity less valued how well experiment applies to society and can apply to anyone SOCIAL COGNITIVE RESEARCH Information Processing Mind a computer Senses generate input behavior is output Information is filtered organized and biased Information processing 2 minds o Conscious o Unconscious unintentional stable stubborn slow effortful taxing deliberate controllable flexible fast evaluations based on gut instinct effortless Automaticity Most psychological processes occur automatically About 5 of behaviors governed by conscious control Supported by different theoretical perspectives Embodied Cognition Automaticity Sitting in a hard chair tough negotiation sales tactic Mind body connection sensitive to physical environmental cues Wobbly chair uncertainty Heavy backpack guilty feelings Heavy objects weighty decisions Hot coffee better impression Spreading activation Priming Priming activation related concepts ideas in the minds network Automatic uncontrollable When someone says cat you automatically think dog 1 31 Nothing due on Sunday Writing Styles Scientific analytical writing vs Expository writing Journalism Creative writing Should be mimicking language in scientific articles Common Mistakes Conversational flowery language This is fascinating because Rhetorical Questions why don t people help in these situations Undefined colloquial terms NO step it up instead use increase Statements that convey emotion no exclamation points motivation Platitudes and hyperbolic statements Shifting focus to irrelevant ideas that don t pertain to the thesis research question Going off on tangents or separate ideas in the same paragraph o Just one idea per paragraph Splitting a section literature review into different parts of the paper o In general paragraphs should be half a page do not make 1 paragraph the entire page Define your concepts explicitly and accurately even if it seems intuitive o What is prayer What is intimacy o Conceptual and operational definitions Justify your predictions o Why do you expect to find these effects Hypothesis justification is usually based off of old research this is what stands out in a paper the WHY o Directional hypotheses and research questions based on previous research APA style ONLY for in text citations bibliography o No sections abstract body etc o No title page running head word count o No demographics or sample size 100 UMD students o No need to describe specific measures Rosenberg Self esteem Scale o In text Authors last name ONLY Always pair names with dates Smith 1999 Ampersand in parenthetical citations and outside of parentheticals No retrieved from or PDF link APA Mistakes on ppt Refrain from using direct quotes when possible Look at examples on ppt Style Points 1st person singular 1st person plural if you have co authors o we is discouraged instead use humans Avoid 2nd person you Past tense for previous research Present tense for goals outlines for current papers Future tense for proposals to be done Intro paragraph should give EVERYTHING away for the rest of the paper describe the goals of the paper and give an outline for what will come next in order Organization Structure o State thesis o Define core concepts in body 1 o Provide research evidence in body 2 o Conclusion restates the thesis alone with closing remarks about evidence Evidence about what you re trying to convey Restate thesis and hypothesis What do we now know that we didn t know before What can we say about interpersonal attraction now Objections o Don t hesitate to repeat your thesis and hypothesis many times throughout the paper with the same exact sentence will be done at least 3 times Scientific Terminology Independent and dependent variables Predictor Outcome Variables Random assignment vs Quasi experiments Correlations vs Mean differences Statistical significance vs Effect size substantial or large General Tips What to cite Write concisely Delete unnecessary details regarding methods results Talk about your ideas fluently o Read it aloud and have other read it Watch for careless errors Grammar dictation punctuation etc For inspiration ideas cite films TV books magazines newspapers For scientific background information cite ONLY primary academic sources journal articles book chapters DON T CITE TEXTBOOK AND LECTURES DON T CITE


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UMD PSYC 221 - Theories and Methods in Social Psych

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