0 Anonymous Asked: September 7, 2020In: Psychology Discuss the methods of data collection and analysis used in social psychological research. Explain the various ethical issues involved in social psychological research. 0 ma psychologympc-005 1 Answer Voted Oldest Recent admin Added an answer on September 8, 2020 at 6:10 pm Methods of Data Collection: Observations, the study of documents, questionnaire, interviews, testing and experiment, etc. Methods of Analysis Statistical Methods: Correlational, Factor analysis Logical and theoretical: Constructs of typology, various means of explanations etc. Our discussion will be limited to following methods: Observational method Correlation method Experimental method Ethnography Observational Method: Observation is the old method of social psychology. Many writers have used different terms and categories for this method like method of systematic observation (Morgan and King), direct observation (Hilgard and Atkinson) and Feldman has included it in field study. Observation is to simply observe the phenomena under study as it occur naturally. This method plays a very important role in the collection of data on overt behaviour and the actions of individuals. The main problem involved in the application of this method include, what to observe? How to fixate the observations? How to structure observation? What should be the units of observation in social psychological research, and the definite interval of time for observation? This method proceeds in following two stages: Describing behaviour: This methods starts with the observation of behaviours in natural setting that is relevant for the research. The observation may be based on the questions like what do people do? Can various behaviours be classified in systematic ways? How do people differ in their behaviors? From description to causes: The method of systematic observation tells us what do people do and how they differ in their behaviours. It may also be used to find out what caused the observed behaviours. But one should to be cautious in inferring causes from observation as A behaviour may have many causes: The fact that an event comes before another event do not show that the first event is the cause of the latter one. To establish likely causes of even simple behaviour, a number of observations would be required. For more complex behaviours, establishing likely cause is much more difficult. Thus to find out the course of a particular behaviours, we must look carefully at the result of many observations, noting the effects of a particular factor. Observational method can be relatively informal and unstructured or it can be formal and structured. But the object in each case in the same, “To abstract information from the complex flux of social behaviours that are of potential significance to the research questions; and to record each instance of such actions over some period”. The nature of research setting or topic dictates that observation is conducted in a relatively informal and unstructured manner with the researcher posing as a member of the group being observed. A Classical example of research employing this method is Festinger, Riecken and Schachter’s (1956) study of the consequences of blatant disconfirmation of strongly held beliefs. The investigators identified a religious sect which predicted that the northern hemisphere would be destroyed by flood on a certain date. By joining that sect, members of the research team were able to observe what happened when the predicted events failed to materialise? This is called participant observation. In such observation researcher participate in the ongoing activities of the people being observed. Correlation Method: Correlation is a relationship between two (or more) variables such that systematic increase or decrease in the magnitude of one variable is accompanied by systematic increase or decrease in the magnitude of the others”. Correlation Method: Correlation is a relationship between two (or more) variables such that systematic increase or decrease in the magnitude of one variable is accompanied by systematic increase or decrease in the magnitude of the others”. A Correlational study of the connection between income and happiness thus inquires whether more money is associated with greater happiness (Positive correlation), or with lower happier (a negative correlation) or does not go along with happiness (a zero correlation). The degree of relationship is assessed mathematically and is expressed as a correlation coefficient ranging from +1.00 to –1.00. A positive correlation indicates that the scores on the two variables move in the same direction; as the scores rise (or fall) on one variable, they also rise or fall on the other variable. A negative correlation indicates that the score move in opposite directions: an increase in the scores on one variable is accompanied by a decrease in scores on the other. The magnitude of the obtained correlation reflects the degree of this relationship. The plus sign indicates a positive relation and the minus sign a negative correlation. The closer a correlation value comes to positive or negative 1.00, the stronger the relationship between two variables. One of the most important points in understanding the result of correlation research is that finding a correlation between two variables does not in any way imply that two are linked causally. It may be that one variable causes the changes in the other, but it is just as plausible that it does not. It is even possible that some third, unmeasured and previously unconsidered variable is causing both variables to increase or decrease simultaneously. We can take the example of the possible relationship between television violence and viewer aggression. Because in most cases it is difficult to control adult viewers’ television viewing habits, researcher must carry out correlation studies in which the aggressive content of television programs viewed by an individual is compared with the degree of aggressive behaviour that person carries out. Experimental Method: Experimentation has been the dominant research method in social psychology, mainly because it is without equal as a method for testing theories that predict causal relationships between variables. The goal of an experiment is to see what happens to a phenomenon, such as obedience, when the researcher deliberately modifies some features of the environment in which the phenomenon occurs (that is, if variable A is changed, will there be resulting changes in B). There are two basic types of experiments in social psychology laboratory and natural laboratory and natural experiments have their particular rules. The laboratory experiment is of particular interest in social psychological discussions. Social psychologists use some variations. Two of the most common of these variations are the quasi-experiments and true randomized experiments. These two methods differ with respect to realism of the setting in which data are collected, and the degree of control that the researcher has over that setting. Quasi-experimental Method: Quasi-experiment is conducted in a natural, everyday life setting, over which the researcher has less than complete control. The lack of control over the setting arises from the very fact that it is an everyday life setting. Here, the realism of the setting is relatively high, the control relatively low. Ethical Issues: Perhaps the most important ethical principle is that participants should be protected from harm, psychological or otherwise. Psychological harm can be difficult to operationalise because it can depend upon the person and it can be difficult to detect, both the participants and the researchers may not know that participants have been harmed psychologically. However, that being said, researchers can do their upmost to prevent any undue stress for their participants. Giving participants the right to withdraw does not just informing them that they can leave the study at any time, but also informing them that they have the right to withdraw their results from the study at any time. This is important because some participants may feel pressured into continuing with the study. It is also important because it prevents the participants from feeling embarrassed about their results. Take for example a study in which a person has to take an IQ test, that returns the result that they have below average intelligence. This could be embarrassing for the participants and may lead them to want to withdraw. Following on from the previous point. Ensuring that your results are anonymous and also confidential follows the ethical code put forth by the British Psychological Society. No one outside of the experiment — and ideally in the experiment too — should be able to identify the participants from the results. For any research to be ethical, the researcher must have gained informed consent from the participants. The ‘informed’ part of this ethical principle is the most important part. It is no use to gain consent from participants when they are not informed about the true nature of the study. The participants were told that they would be participating in research on memory and learning, and they consented to take part based on that knowledge. Milgram therefore did not gain informed consent because the participants were not fully informed about the true nature of the study, that is, it was a study into obedience. 0 Reply Share Share Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Leave an answerLeave an answerCancel reply Featured image Select file Browse Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.