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Textbook Site for:
Social Psychology , Sixth Edition
Sharon S. Brehm - Indiana University
Saul Kassin - Williams College
Steven Fein - Williams College
Learning Objectives - Doing Social Psychology Research

You should be able to do each of the following by the conclusion of Chapter 2.
  1. Explain the utility of learning about research methods in social psychology. Describe the process of generating ideas in social psychology, searching the relevant literature, and developing hypotheses. Distinguish between a hypothesis and a theory, and between applied and basic research. (pp. 26-29)

  2. Explain how operational definitions are used to test conceptual variables. Summarize self-report and observational research practices, including advantages and disadvantages of each. Define construct validity and interrater reliability. (pp. 29-33)

  3. Explain the usefulness of archival studies and surveys. Define random sampling, and explain its importance. (pp. 33-37)

  4. Contrast correlational research with descriptive research. Define the correlation coefficient, and explain what it means to say that two variables are negatively correlated, positively correlated, or uncorrelated. Differentiate concurrent and prospective correlations. Summarize the advantages and an important disadvantage of correlational research. (pp. 37-40)

  5. Explain the importance of control and random assignment in experimental research. Differentiate random sampling from random assignment, and laboratory experiments from field experiments. (pp. 40-41)

  6. Define the following terms associated with experimental research: independent variable, dependent variable, subject variable, main effect, and interaction. (pp. 42-45)

  7. Explain the importance of statistical significance, internal validity, and external validity. Describe how the external validity of a study is affected by mundane realism, experimental realism, deception, and the use of confederates. Define meta-analysis. (pp. 45-48)

  8. Discuss the function of ethics in social psychological research. Describe the roles of institutional review boards, informed consent, and debriefing in protecting the welfare of human participants. Summarize the competing points of view about the role of values in science. (pp. 48-51)