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Effective Term: Summer 2009

PSY 289 Psychology Research Methods

Credit Hours: 4.00 Lecture Periods: 3.00 Lab Periods: 3.00

Introduction to scientific methodologies used in psychological research. Includes experience in using a range of psychological research methods for students.

Prerequisite(s): PSY 100A and 100B, or PSY 101, and completion of PSY 230 and WRT 101 with a grade of C or better.

Information: Prerequisite(s) may be waived with consent of instructor before enrolling in this class.

Recommendation: Designed for students planning to major or minor in psychology.

Course Learning Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of the course, the student will be able to:

  1. Describe and discuss the methods used in most psychological research including experimental, correlational, and naturalistic approaches.

  2. Locate research literature in the field of psychology.

  3. Identify the appropriate statistical analysis for different research designs.

  4. Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses (in terms of internal and external validity) of the methods employed in selected studies.

  5. Describe the logic of experimentation.

  6. Describe the main themes of the American Psychological Association (APA) guidelines on ethics.

  7. Conceptualize and design a research study and report it in a formal research proposal.

  8. Write research reports using APA publication format.


I. Introduction to Research Methods

A. What is science?

B. Different types of research methods

II. Research Problem Formulation

A. Developing the hypothesis

B. Library research

III. Statistics

A. Descriptive

B. Inferential

IV. Hypothesis Testing

A. Statistical hypothesis testing

B. Threats to internal validity

C. Threats to external validity

V. Experimental Design and Control

A. Between-subjects designs

B. Within-subjects designs

VI. Non-Experimental Designs

A. Correlational designs

B. Naturalistic research

C. Surveys and sampling

VII. Single-Subject Designs

A. Case study designs
B. Experimental single-subject designs

VIII. Research Ethics

A. Rights of research participants

B. Ethical guidelines of the American Psychological Association

IX. Reporting Research
A. Scientific article

B. American Psychological Association publication format

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