By Rajiv Jhangiani
Research Methods in Social Psychology
Subtle/Nonconscious Research Methods
Research Issues in Social Psychology
The Question of Representativeness
Ethics in Social Psychological Research
- Article: Do research ethics need updating for the digital age? Questions raised by the Facebook emotional contagion study.
- Article: Psychology is WEIRD. A commentary on non-representative samples in Psychology.
- Web: Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count. Paste in text from a speech, article, or other archive to analyze its linguistic structure.
- Web: Project Implicit. Take a demonstration implicit association test
- Web: Research Randomizer. An interactive tool for random sampling and random assignment.
- Anecdotal evidence
- An argument that is based on personal experience and not considered reliable or representative.
- Archival research
- A type of research in which the researcher analyses records or archives instead of collecting data from live human participants.
- Basking in reflected glory
- The tendency for people to associate themselves with successful people or groups.
- Big data
- The analysis of large data sets.
- Complex experimental designs
- An experiment with two or more independent variables.
- An actor working with the researcher. Most often, this individual is used to deceive unsuspecting research participants. Also known as a “stooge.”
- Correlational research
- A type of descriptive research that involves measuring the association between two variables, or how they go together.
- Cover story
- A fake description of the purpose and/or procedure of a study, used when deception is necessary in order to answer a research question.
- Demand characteristics
- Subtle cues that make participants aware of what the experimenter expects to find or how participants are expected to behave.
- Dependent variable
- The variable the researcher measures but does not manipulate in an experiment.
- Ecological validity
- The degree to which a study finding has been obtained under conditions that are typical for what happens in everyday life.
- Electronically activated recorder (EAR)
- A methodology where participants wear a small, portable audio recorder that intermittently records snippets of ambient sounds around them.
- Experience sampling methods
- Systematic ways of having participants provide samples of their ongoing behavior. Participants' reports are dependent (contingent) upon either a signal, pre-established intervals, or the occurrence of some event.
- Field experiment
- An experiment that occurs outside of the lab and in a real world situation.
- A logical idea that can be tested.
- Implicit association test (IAT)
- A computer-based categorization task that measures the strength of association between specific concepts over several trials.
- Independent variable
- The variable the researcher manipulates and controls in an experiment.
- Laboratory environments
- A setting in which the researcher can carefully control situations and manipulate variables.
- Manipulation check
- A measure used to determine whether or not the manipulation of the independent variable has had its intended effect on the participants.
- Naturalistic observation
- Unobtrusively watching people as they go about the business of living their lives.
- How researchers specifically measure a concept.
- Participant variable
- The individual characteristics of research subjects - age, personality, health, intelligence, etc.
- The process by which exposing people to one stimulus makes certain thoughts, feelings or behaviors more salient.
- Random assignment
- Assigning participants to receive different conditions of an experiment by chance.
- Samples of convenience
- Participants that have been recruited in a manner that prioritizes convenience over representativeness.
- Scientific method
- A method of investigation that includes systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.
- Social facilitation
- When performance on simple or well-rehearsed tasks is enhanced when we are in the presence of others.
- Social neuroscience
- An interdisciplinary field concerned with identifying the neural processes underlying social behavior and cognition.
- Social or behavioral priming
- A field of research that investigates how the activation of one social concept in memory can elicit changes in behavior, physiology, or self-reports of a related social concept without conscious awareness.
- Survey research
- A method of research that involves administering a questionnaire to respondents in person, by telephone, through the mail, or over the internet.
- Terror management theory (TMT)
- A theory that proposes that humans manage the anxiety that stems from the inevitability of death by embracing frameworks of meaning such as cultural values and beliefs.
- WEIRD cultures
- Cultures that are western, educated, industrialized, rich, and democratic.