Research, Statistics And Psychology Essay

1197 words - 5 pages

Research, Statistics and Psychology

Research, Statistics and Psychology

name

PSY315

University of Phoenix

Introduction

Research and statistics play a huge role in the study of psychology. Research is essential in any study. That is because research is precisely that, the study of a topic. Statistics give the researcher a way to explain numerical data quickly and efficiently. Through the years psychology has been growing and changing and that is due in part to new and ever changing research findings. To truly understand the impact research and statistics have had on the field of psychology it is important to understand what research and statistics truly are. What do they help us find or understand? What type of data do we get from research and statistics? How exactly are statistics related to research? Understanding the answers to these questions is vital in understanding the field of psychology.

Research and the Scientific Method

What is research? How does or has it effected psychology? What is meant by the scientific method? How is it applied to psychology? Research according to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary is "a careful or diligent search; studious inquiry or examination aimed at the discovery and interpretation of new knowledge" (Aron, Aron, & Coups, 2006). Research over the years has changed and with that change all of science has been affected. Research has become easier with the advent of the internet. Scientists around the world are able to share their research and view others research with the click of button.

What is the scientific method? According to Rochester Universities website "The scientific method is the process by which scientists, collectively and over time, endeavor to construct an accurate (that is, reliable, consistent and non-arbitrary) representation of the world" (Wilson, 2008). That said the scientific method is made up of four steps. These four steps are: observation, creating a hypothesis, testing the hypothesis, and gathering data. This scientific method of research is used world wide by scientists in every field. The steps of research are important, but equally important is the data or information that is gathered.

Primary and Secondary Data

When research is being conducted and the scientific method applied, what type of data do we retrieve? There are two main types of data, primary and secondary. Primary data is the actual outcome, or what we were looking for from the original hypothesis. Secondary data is data that we receive from the research but wasn't initially sought after. For example: An experiment is being run to see if rats have the ability to navigate a maze in the dark. The hypothesis is that the rats will be able to navigate the maze if they had previously run it in the light. In the testing stage 6 rats are...

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