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Psychology 216A: Research Methods and Experimental Design
Fall 1999, MWF 1:00 – 1:50 / Lab Monday 1:50 – 2:30

 

Instructor Alexander Genov
Office hours Monday 10:50 – 11:50 
Office Fenton 508
Phone (617) 573 – 8782
E-mail agenov@suffolk.edu

 
 
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Text  (required):
               (required):

Shaughnessy, Zechmeister, &  Zechmeister (2000), Research Methods in Psychology Fifth Edition.
Zechmeister, Zechmeister, & Shaughnessy (1997), Student Workbook: A practical introduction to research methods in psychology
Goals: This course has two primary goals: 
 (1)
to help you develop skills in searching for reading, writing, and evaluating psychological research pieces
 (2)
to prepare you for more advanced courses in research methods
. Both of these goals require knowledge of the basic concepts and the logic of research methods in science in general and psychology in particular.
Grading: Final grades will be based on a combination of quizzes, lab exercise assignments, paper write-ups, and a final exam.
Quizzes:
There will be 3 in-class quizzes, each consisting of multiple-choice and short-answer items.  Each quiz is worth 50 points (150 points total).
Exercises:
There will be 10 assignments DUE IN LAB throughout the semester each worth 15 points (150 points total).
Paper:
Throughout the semester you will be working on a research proposal. The TOPIC is due September 17 (10 points); 
the INTRODUCTION is due October 4 (20 points); the revised INTRO and PROPOSED METHODS are due October 22 (30 points); 
the revised INTRO revised PROPOSED METHODS and EXPECTED RESULTS are due November 10 (40 points) (100 points total).
Final:
The final exam will be a cumulative multiple-choice and short-answer test to be described in more detail later (100 points).
. The grading scale for each test and the final grading scale are as follows:
. NOTE: final grades will take into account more that the sum of points!

 
 
Percentage  Total points  Grade
91-100  453-500  A
89-90  443-452  A-
87-88  433-442  B+
81-86  403-432  B
79-80  393-402  B-
77-78  383-392  C+
68-76  338-382  C
57-67  283-337  D
0-56  0-282  F

 
Make-up
policy:
Make-up tests will be given only for two reasons:
. (1) if it is approved and arranged at least one week before the test
. (2) there is a real emergence or documented illness.
. Make-up tests are not automatic that is they will be approved ONLY in the event of extremely unusual or urgent 
circumstances.
Extra credit: The maximum number of extra credit points you can earn over the semester is 20.  Any papers written for extra credit can be turned in at 
any time during the semester but no later than the beginning of the final.  The points can be earned in any of the following ways:
.
  • Psychology experimenters may recruit participants.  You can take part for extra credit (1 point per hour)
  • .
  • Find a newspaper or magazine article that you feel is related to our class material.  Write a 1-3 page  paper in which you briefly summarize the

  • article and discuss how it is related to the particular class topic (2 possible points).
    .
  • Find a newspaper or magazine article that reports the findings of a study. Briefly summarize the article and critique it (e.g. how was the 

  • sample collected?  How were the data analyzed; what conclusions were drawn (1-3 pages) (4 possible points).
    .
  • Find a psychology journal article.  Summarize it and explain how it is related to our class.  This paper (3-5 pages in length) should be more detailed 

  • than option # 2. (4 possible points).

     

    All papers must be TYPES and DOUBLE-SPACED.  Points will be deducted for unclear writing (e.g. spelling, grammar mistakes, etc.).  Other extra credit options can be discussed with me.

    Academic misconduct:  All instances of academic dishonesty (as defined in the student handbook, including cheating on exams and plagiarism) will result in failure of the course.  Cheating on exams includes looking at someone else's test or giving information during the test, either directly or by positioning yourself or your test so as to get or give information.  Plagiarism is defined as taking someone else's ideas as passing them off as your own.  In ANY papers you write, if you use someone's idea, give that person credit for having come up with the idea first.  If two student papers are nearly identical, both students will receive F’s on the papers.
     
     

    DATE TOPIC
    (click on the link to view summary)
    READING
    WHAT’S DUE
    W -- 9/8 General issues
    .
    .
    F -- 9/10 The Scientific Method and the Research Process
    Chapter 1
    .
    M -- 9/13
    Unit 1
    Exercises A & B pp14-15
    W -- 9/15 .
    .
    .
    F – 9/17 Ethical Issues in Psychological Research
    Ch. 2
    Topic of proposal
    M – 9/20  
    U. 2
    A p. 31
    W – 9/22 .
    .
    .
    F – 9/24
    QUIZ 1
    .
    .
    M – 9/27 Observation 1
    Ch. 3/ U. 3
    B pp. 54-55
    W – 9/29 Observation 2
    .
    .
    F – 10/1 Observation 3
    .
    .
    M – 10/4 Survey Research 1
    Ch. 4/ U. 4
     
    Proposal/Intro/C & D p.76
    W – 10/6 Survey Research 2
    .
    .
    F – 10/8 Survey Research 3
    .
    .
    W – 10/13 Unobtrusive Measures
    Chapter 5
    .
    F – 10/15 .
    .
    .
    M – 10/18
    Unit 5
    B p.92
    W – 10/20
    QUIZ 2
    .
    .
    F – 10/22 Essential Features of the Experimental Method
    Chapter 6
    Intro and Methods
    M – 10/25 Validity of Experimental Research
    Unit 6
    D p. 120
    W – 10/27 Experimental methods I: Independent groups
    .
    .
    F – 10/29  
    .
    .
    M – 11/1 Experimental methods II: Repeated measures
    Ch. 7/ U. 7
    C p.142
    W – 11/3  
    .
    .
    F – 11/5 Single Factor Designs
    .
    .
    M – 11/8  
    Unit 7
    D p. 144
    W – 11/10 Experimental methods III: Complex designs
    Chapter 8
    Intro/methods/ results
    F – 11/12 .
    .
    .
    M – 11/15  
    Unit 8
    B 165 & D 167
    W – 11/17
    QUIZ 3
    .
    .
    . .
    .
    .
    F – 11/19 Applied research: The single case design
    Chapter 9
    .
    M – 11/22 Writing lab
    .
    .
    M – 11/29 Applied research: Quasi experiments and program evaluation
    Chapter 10/ Unit 10
    A p. 203
    W – 12/1 .
    .
    .
    F – 12/3 .
    .
    .
    M – 12/6 Appendix A
    Statistics
     
    (saved the best for last :))
    W – 12/8 Wrap-up
    .
    .
    .
    Topics for Final Short Answer Questions
    .
    .