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Psychological Investigations (Unit 1)

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1 Example core studies with correlational data
1.1 Physiological Approach
1.1.1 Dement & Kleitman Laboratory Experiment Measured the correlation between how long the sleeper had been in REM sleep and the length of their dream
1.1.2 Maguire Quasi Experiment Measured the correlation between length of taxi driver's experience and the structural change of the hippocampus
2 To calculate the correlation coefficient
2.1 To quantify the strength of relationship between two variables
2.2 Correlation Coefficient: A mathematical measure of the degree of relatedness between two sets of data where two scores have been gained from each participant
2.2.1 A value between -1 and +1 +1 = Perfect positive correlation -1 = Perfect negative correlation
3 Data can be plotted on a scattergraph
3.1 With a line of best fit
3.2 Positive Correlation: Both variable increase
3.3 No Correlation: No line of best fit
3.4 Negative Correlation: One variable increases, the other decreases
4 Advantages
4.1 Allow researchers to calculate the strength of a relationship between variables quantitively
4.2 Correlation can make predictions about one variable from the other
4.3 More detailed research
5 Disadvantages
5.1 Can't assume one variable causes another
5.2 Correlation bewtween variables can be misleading/misinterpreted
5.3 No correlation may not mean there isn't a relationship because the relationship may be non-linear
6 Ethics
6.1 Researching relationships between socially sensitive subjects such as IQ and ethnicity can be misinterpreted as 'cause and effect'
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