make-up assignment Experimenting within Psychology

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Experiments are crucial to truly understand human behavior and thought. But, if these experiments are not run properly, faulty conclusions can occur. Several experiments are messed up because of small things that could have been prevented. In order to run a successful experiment, one must remember a few small ways that can insure a close to clear conclusion. Two things that must be accounted for are the placebo and nocebo effects, which can easily be sorted out by introducing a placebo and not tell the participants who is in which group. Another is to make sure that there is both an experimental and a control group. The best way to go about picking the participants for each group is the double-blind method, in which case no one knows who is in which group. Another method that can help insure a valid conclusion is to not let the participants know what you are looking for so that they do not unknowingly taint the outcome of the experiment in any way.psychology-experiments.jpg Many different things other then those previously stated can ruin the outcome of any experiment, even if the experiment is run flawlessly, the conclusion can always be manipulated, whether by accident or not. Conformation bias is a big one. The instructors of an experiment can "unknowingly" alter their findings so that they match up with what they believed the outcome to be before preforming the experiment. Experiments should be done carefully, otherwise the outcomes to them could be very misleading.

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Another important factor that plays into every experiment is the scientific method. The scientific method has no method that is followed verbatim but if an experiment is run successfully then all the pieces of the method will be covered. I think it is interesting how a subject can unknowingly influence their choices thus influencing the results of an experiment simply by being informed of the hypothesis. I also like the image a lot it is very clever.

It is so easy to be able to say hey, let's do an experiment and whatever the outcome is, it must be right. We could never be further from the truth. It is kind of scary how difficult an experiment can be due to the numerous possibilities that may negatively or positively shape the ending results. It is difficult to design and most importantly perform a perfect experiment with trustworthy results. Due to the media, it is very easy for almost anyone without a background in the material to understand that most of it is not true. I just find it a little depressing that our society has to fill the world with lies and misinterpretations.

We learned the need of psychology experiment and rules that psychology experiment should follow in order to get a more accurate result at the beginning of this semester. From this entry, I learned more about this. Thank you!

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This page contains a single entry by bolt0113 published on February 1, 2012 5:01 PM.

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