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applied research

research undertaken to solve a specific problem

basic research

exploers questions that are of interest to psychologists but are not intended to have immediate, real-world application


the extent to which a test measures or predicts what it is supposed to


the extent to which a test yields consistent results

representative sample

a sample that accurately reflects the characteristics of the population as a whole

stratified sampling

a process or selecting individuals from a population in such a way that the subgroups in the population are represented in the sample, the population is divided into subpopulations and random samples are taken of each stratum.


experiment in the lab

confounding variables-participant and situation-relevant

any difference between the experimental and control conditions, except for the independent variable, that might affect the dependent variable

Hawthorne effect

a change in a subject's behavior caused simply by the awareness of being studied

Response rate

number of people who complete your survey

Descriptive statistics

statistical procedures used to describe characteristics and responses of groups of subjects

Frequency distribution

an arrangement of data that indicates how often a particular score or observation occurs

z score

in a normal distribution it tells you how far a number is above or below mean in terms of standard deviations.

line of best fit/regression line

a smooth line that reflects the general pattern in a graph

inferential statistics

numerical methods used to determine whether research data support a hypothesis or whether results were due to chance

p value

The probability level which forms basis for deciding if results are statistically significant (not due to chance).

sampling error

the extent to which the samples differ

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

a committee at each institution where research is conducted to review every experiment for ethics and methodology





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