Assignment: Observational Methods

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Assignment: Observational Methods

Assignment: Observational Methods

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Assignment: Observational Methods
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To prepare for this activity, please review  (Turnitin, 2012).  Review Instructor Guidance and Announcements.  Part of scientific research includes conveying knowledge (about theory, research, etc.) to others.  In this activity, you will practice using your own  and applying .

  1. Review the following passage from your textbook, followed by a rewritten summary:ORIGINAL AUTHOR’S THOUGHTS
    Social psychologists use the scientific method—a hypothesis, or testable prediction, is developed and then tested using observational, correlational, or experimental methods.  These different methods answer different kinds of questions.  Observational methods answer questions relating to what is happening.  Correlational methods look at relationships between variables, enabling prediction.  Correlation, however, does not allow us to determine causation.  With the experimental method, researchers manipulate one variable, the independent variable, and measure the effect of that manipulation through assessment of the dependent variable.  At times, once one knows the results of a research study, those results may seem obvious, but people tend to fall short when truly predicting results beforehand.  This sense that “you knew it all along” is called the hindsight bias.  In research, attention is paid to potential ethical issues.  Researchers have their research plans checked by an institutional review board, and participants provide informed consent and are debriefed at the end of the participation.


    • Feenstra, J. (2013). Introduction to social psychology [Electronic version]. Retrieved from

    Social psychologists use the scientific method—a hypothesis, or testable prediction, is developed and then tested using observational, correlational, or experimental methods (Feenstra, 2013).  Different methods answer different kinds of questions.  Observational methods answer questions about what is happening.  Correlation enables prediction by looking at relationships between variables.  Correlation, however, does not determine causation.  With the experimental method, researchers manipulate the independent variable and measure the effect of that manipulation on the dependent variable.  Occasionally, one might correctly predict results and feel as though he or she “knew it all along” (hindsight bias), but this is rare.  In research, attention is directed to possible ethical issues.  An institutional review board will check the plans of a researcher, and participants will provide informed consent and will be debriefed following participation in studies.

  2. Review the rewritten passage.
  3. Locate and identify the errors, based on  (Turnitin, 2012), that exist in the rewrite.
    • Are there any sentences that are correctly paraphrased?
    • Why could this rewrite be considered ?
  4. Rewrite the passage appropriately using appropriate methods for  and  information (without using quotes.).  In other words, demonstrate how could you share the information successfully, using your own , within a paper you might be writing.
  5. Explain what it means to paraphrase and why this is an important practice for all individuals participating in academic writing.
    • What are some additional features of academic writing that should be considered as you write papers within your program?
    • What methods/strategies can you use to assure that you are successfully using your own academic voice rather than someone else’s?
    • What are some potential consequences for failing to consider the importance of academic voice (e.g., consequences in one’s academic journey/success, ability to communicate with others successfully)?

Carefully review the  for the criteria that will be used to evaluate your assignment.

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