General feedback from essays
Do nots
Use unnecessary wording “A relevant debate is..”
Jump from ideas too quickly
Chuck stuff in for the sake of it- e.g reliability/mundane realism
Rush it at the end
Not conclude your argument
Add something new into the conclusion
Repeat the same points
Include evaluation points but not develop them
“This only supports the nature side of the nature/nurture debate”
General feedback- essay
Dos 
Consider structure- plan and re-plan (at this stage)
Include as much detail as possible in your AO1- Show off
Make your discussion relevant to the question throughout
Create fluency
Limit the IDA points- quality not quantity
Be relevant
Focus on the question
Synthesise where appropriate- If both theories are reductionist talk
about this together
• Be Formal throughout
• Fully develop all ideas before moving on
• Conclude your argument
Essay DIRT
• Look at your feedback
• I have put an asterix (*) next to your main
improvement point(s)
• 15 mins- Re-write that paragraph or section or
list an improved plan for the essay
Homework- Essay plan
Discuss one or more evolutionary explanations
of group display in humans
(4 marks and 16 marks)
For Monday 19th/Tuesday 20th
We will look at the plans and you will have a
timed essay on Thursday/ Friday next week
Define the following on the white
• Objectivity
• Empiricism
• Hypo-thetico Deductive approach
• Peer review
Gender research ideas
Gender research topic ideas
Gender differences in memory
Gender differences in sleep
Gender differences in answering questions in class
Gender differences in likeliness to be asked questions in class
Gender traits
Gender preferences in films/music
Gender differences in jealousy
Gender differences in mental health
Gender preferences in choice of A level subjects
Gender differences in university decisions
Scientific Process
1. Problem/theory- Question
2. Prediction
3. Experimental method
4. Research Method- Design, instruments,
5. Data
List as many research methods as you
Research methods
• Experiments
• Observations
• Case studies
• Self reports
• Interviews
• Questionnaire
• Correlations
Experimental methods
• Lab
• Field
• Natural
• Quasi
Quasi experiments
• Plan your method
Children become more attached to animals they can cuddle
such as rabbits and dogs than animals they can’t such as
reptiles and fish
1.Case study
2. Interview/questionnaire
3. Observation
4. Lab/Quasi experiment
5.Field Experiment
6. Natural experiment
Case study
 Ecological validity
 Rich data
 Variety of methods- mixed
 Rich data is hard to analyse
 Cannot generalise and low population validity
 Cannot control extraneous variables- individual
 Low reliability
 Low generalisabiltiy
 Open to research bias
Mixed data methods
Easy to analyse
Validity- real children with real views
Ethics- Anonymity
Large sample really easily
Social desirability
Interviewer or interpreter bias
Ethics- sensitivity
Validity- Wrong information given? Accuracy?
Missing information
Communication of questions may be ambigous
 Covert- no investigator effects or demand
 Rich, detailed data- Qual and Quan
 High ecological validity
 External and internal validity is high
 Hard to control extraneous variables
 Subjective and open to bias
 Observer bias
 Ethics- consent and protection from harm
 Replicability and reliability
 Internal validity
control over all variables
Reliability and replicability
No research bias- (depends)
High internal validity
Social desirability
Demand characteristics
Low ecological validity
Natural/ Field
High ecological validity
External validity
Detailed data
Open to extraneous variables
Low reliability
Low internal validity due to lack of control
Booklet task
• Page 8
Experimental design
• Independent measures
• Repeated measures
• Matched pairs
Starter- Experimental design
• Highlight Strengths and Weaknesses of
• Independent groups
• Dependant groups
• Matched pairs
Research design
Zoe is doing an experiment on memory for neutral and
sport related words involving a short memory test in
controlled conditions. She is worried all the sporty people
will end up in one group so decides to test everyone on
both kinds of words
What is the experimental method?
What is the experimental design?
What problem could there be with this design?
How could Zoe overcome this problem?
What other type of experiment could she use?
What is content analysis?
Exam practice
In an observational study, 100 cars were fitted with video
cameras to record the driver’s behaviour. Two psychologists
used content analysis to analyse the data from the films. They
found that 75% of accidents involved a lack of attention by the
driver. The most common distractions were using a hands-free
phone or talking to a passenger. Other distractions included
looking at the scenery, smoking, eating, personal grooming
and trying to reach something within the car.
1 8 What is content analysis? (2 marks)
1 9 Explain how the psychologist might have carried out
content analysis (4 marks)
• One tailed (directional)
• Two tailed (non- directional)
Which is better?
Note the IV/DV/Type of Hypothesis
• Memory will be worse after a delay than for
immediate recall
• Child and adult witnesses differ in accuracy of their
• Children spending longer in day care are more
Operationalising variables
• Any variable needs to be defined to ensure it is a
valid manipulation or measure and to aid
replication, e.g. a DV of ‘security of attachment’
could be defined by an infant’s responses in the
Strange Situation.
• In a memory study the DV could be defined by
the number of words recalled and the IV of
‘amount of rehearsal’ as the time allowed for
• Operationalised
There is a relationship between happiness
scores on a questionnaire and intelligence test
• Not operationalise
there is a relationship between happiness and
Answer the questions relating to the hypothesis below:
‘Do older people sleep more or less than younger
Identify the IV and DV.
How could you operationalise the IV and DV?
Write an operationalised ONE TAILED hypothesis.
Write an operationalised NULL hypothesis
• Booklet p9
Your research
• Question
• Operationalise variables
• Hypothesis
• IV
• DV
Sampling methods
• List them
1. Jane is hoping to carry out an experiment on how non-smokers’
memories are affected by a smoky atmosphere. She has decided to
put a notice on the VLE asking people who would be willing to
participate to e-mail her.
2. As part of his A Level, Henry is investigating how childhood
memories of seventeen and eighteen year olds differ according to
gender. He selects participants for his study by asking friends,
acquaintances or anyone who will agree to take part.
3. Tessa is investigating how the strength of BHASVIC students’
memories differ for events that have occurred in their college life
compared to in their life outside of college. She decides to gain her
sampling by giving each BHASVIC student a number, then using
random number tables to select students who have the
corresponding numbers.
Question one
Researchers conducted an independent measures design experiment in
a local coffee bar investigating whether receiving physical contact from
someone increases their rating of friendliness.
The experiment took place between 11am and 2pm on a Wednesday.
As members of the public left the coffee bar after paying, some were
touched lightly on the upper arm by the cashier, whereas others were
Outside the coffee bar members of the public were asked how friendly
they thought the staff were on a scale of 1 (‘not very friendly’) to 10
(‘extremely friendly’).
Identify the sampling technique used to obtain participants for this
study and suggest one weakness with it. [4]
Question two
A researcher has become interested in studying
stress associated with driving and wishes to
conduct an investigation to assess stress levels
of motorists in England using the self-report
• Describe and evaluate an appropriate
sampling technique for this study. [10]
• You have 15 mins to create something to
present on how you are going to meet all of
the ethical guidelines
• Use page 2 of your proposal booklet to help
• 5 people are going to form the ethics board
per student/group presentation
Next session(s)