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Chapter 2 Getting Started: Ideas, Resources, and Ethics Chapter Outline Selecting a Problem Reviewing the Literature Library Research Journals Psychological Abstracts PsycINFO and PsycLIT Social Science Citation Index and Science Citation Index Other Resources Reading a Journal Article: What to Expect Abstract Introduction Method Results Discussion Ethical Standards in Research with Human Participants Institutional Review Boards Informed Consent Risk Deception Debriefing Ethical Standards in Research with Children Ethical Standards in Research with Animals Summary

Review of Key Terms Debriefing—Providing information about the true purpose of the study as soon after the completion of data collection as possible. Deception—Lying to the participants concerning the true nature of the study because knowing the true nature of the study would affect how they might perform in the study. Informed Consent—A form given to individuals before they participate in a study in order to inform them of the general nature of the study and to obtain their consent to participate. Institutional Review Board—A committee charged with evaluating research projects in which human participants are used.


18 • CHAPTER 2

Relevant Articles from Handbook for Teaching Statistics and Research Methods (1st ed.) Baxter, P. M. The benefits of in-class bibliographic instruction. Pp. 124-125. Buche, D. D, & Glover, J. A. Teaching students to review research as an aid for problem solving. Pp. 126129. Feinberg, R. A., Drews, D., & Eynman, D. Positive side effects of online information retrieval. Pp. 119120. Gardner, L. E. A relatively painless method of introduction to the psychological literature search. Pp. 112113. Lewis, L. K. Bibliographic computerized searching in psychology. Pp. 120-122. Mathews. J. B. “Hunting” for psychological literature: A methodology for the introductory research course. Pp. 114-115. Parr, V. H. Course-related library instruction for psychology students. Pp. 116-117. Parr, V. H. Online information retrieval and the undergraduate. Pp. 117-118. Piotrowski, C., & Perdue, B. On-line literature retrieval: An alternative research strategy. Pp. 122-124. Suter, W. N., & Frank, P. Using scholarly journals in undergraduate experimental methodology courses. Pp. 134-136.

Relevant Articles from Handbook for Teaching Statistics and Research Methods (2nd ed.) Anisfeld, M. A course to develop competence in critical reading of empirical research in psychology. Pp. 244-247. Cameron, L., & Hart, J. Assessment of PsychLIT competence, attitudes, and instructional methods. Pp. 157-161. Chamberlain, K. Devising relevant and topical undergraduate laboratory projects: The core article approach. Pp. 186-188. Joswick, K. E. Getting the most from PsychLIT: Recommendations for searching. Pp. 162-166. Merriam, J., LaBaugh, R. T., & Butterfield, N. E. Library instruction for psychology majors: Minimum training guidelines. Pp. 154-157. Poe, R. E. A strategy for improving literature reviews in psychology courses. Pp. 167-168.


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Articles for Discussion from Annual Editions: Research Methods 01/02 Bruce, C. S. Research students’ early experiences of the dissertation literature review, Studies in Higher Education, 19 (2). A research article based on observing the development of research skill in 41 graduate students.

Web Resources For step-by-step practice and information, have your students check out the Statistics and Research Methods Workshops at http://academic.cengage.com/psychology/workshops. In addition, practice quizzes, vocabulary flashcards, and more are available at http://academic.cengage.com/psychology/jackson.

Answers to Chapter Exercises 1. There is no correct answer to this question. It requires library work. 2. Debriefing entails providing information about the true purpose of the study as soon as possible after the completion of data collection. Through the debriefing process participants should learn more about the benefits of research to them and to society in general. The researcher also has the opportunity to alleviate any discomfort the participants may be experiencing. During debriefing, the researcher should try to bring the participants back to the same state of mind that they were in before they participated in the study. 3. When participants in a study are classified as “at risk” this means that there is the potential for them to be under some emotional or physical risk. Participants at “minimal risk” are at no more risk than that encountered in daily life or during the performance of routine physical or psychological examinations or tests. 4. In addition to treating the animals humanely throughout all experimental procedures, the APA guidelines on the use of animals mandate that there must be justification for the research, that the personnel interacting with the animals must be properly trained, that there must be adequate care and housing for the animals, and that the animals are acquired in the appropriate manner. 5. Researchers must consider how informed consent works with children. It should be obtained from the legal guardian for all persons under 18 years of age. However, even in this situation, if the child is of the age to understand language, then the researcher should also try to inform the child concerning the study. The researcher also needs to be particularly sensitive to whether or not the child feels comfortable exercising the rights provided through the informed consent.


20 • CHAPTER 2

Test Items Multiple Choice Questions 1.

_____ allows you to research by topic whereas _____ allows you to work from a given article. a. The SSCI; the SCI b. The SSCI; PsycINFO c. PsycINFO; the SSCI d. ERIC; the SCI

Answer: c 2. _____ is an online database that provides full-text articles from many psychology journals. a. ProQuest b. PsyArticles c. ERIC d. SSCI Answer: b 3. _____ is an online database that searches both scholarly journals and popular media sources. a. ProQuest b. PsyArticles c. ERIC d. SSCI Answer: a 4. _____ is a clearinghouse for research on educational psychology, testing, counseling, child development, evaluation research, and related areas. a. ProQuest b. PsyArticles c. ERIC d. SSCI Answer: c w

5. _____ is a resource that allows you to search for subsequent articles from the social and behavioral sciences that have cited a key article. a. ProQuest b. PsyArticles c. ERIC d. SSCI

Answer: d


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6. _____ is a resource that allows you to search for subsequent articles from disciplines such as biology, chemistry, or medicine that have cited a key article. a. ProQuest b. SSCI c. ERIC d. SCI Answer: d 7. Which of the following represents the correct order for the sections in an APA format paper? a. Abstract, Introduction, Results, Method, Discussion b. Abstract, Introduction, Method, Results, Discussion c. Abstract, Introduction, Discussion, Method, Results d. Abstract, Discussion, Introduction, Method, Results Answer: b 8. The _____ section provides an introduction to the problem, a review of previous research, and the rationale for the current study. a. Method b. Introduction c. Results d. Discussion Answer: b 9. The _____ section describes exactly how the study was conducted in sufficient detail that a person who read it could replicate the study. a. Method b. Results c. Introduction d. Discussion Answer: a 10. A review of previous research is to the _____ section as describing how the study was conducted is to the _____ section. a. Introduction; Results b. Results; Method c. Introduction; Discussion d. Introduction; Method Answer: d


22 • CHAPTER 2

11. The _____ is a very brief description of the entire paper. a. Method b. Results c. Introduction d. Abstract Answer: d w

12. A very brief description of the entire paper is to the _____ section as a review of previous research is to the _____ section. a. Abstract; Introduction b. Introduction; Method c. Abstract; Results d. Results; Introduction

Answer: a 13. The _____ section summarizes the data collected and the type of statistics used to analyze the data. a. Method b. Results c. Introduction d. Discussion Answer: b 14. A summary of the data collected and the type of statistics used to analyze the data is to the _____ section as a very brief description of the entire paper is to the _____ section. a. Results; Introduction b. Introduction; Abstract c. Results; Abstract d. Discussion; Abstract Answer: c 15. In the _____ section, the results are evaluated, interpreted, and related to past research and theories. a. Method b. Results c. Introduction d. Discussion Answer: d 16. An evaluation and interpretation of the results is to the _____ section as describing how the study was conducted is to the _____ section. a. Method; Results b. Discussion; Method c. Discussion; Abstract d. Abstract; Method Answer: b


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17. When Milgram informed the participants in his study that it was on learning and memory, rather than obedience, he utilized: a. psychological harm. b. informed consent. c. debriefing. d. deception. Answer: d w

18. If a researcher told participants that her study was about visual perception rather than what it is really on, conformity, she would be utilizing: a. debriefing. b. no risk. c. an informed consent. d. deception.

Answer: d 19. The Tuskegee syphilis study is the most glaring example of failure to: a. obtain informed consent. b. use deception properly. c. use debriefing. d. comply. Answer: a 20. __________ refers to explaining the purpose of a study to participants after completion of data collection. a. Debriefing b. Informed consent c. Deception d. none of these Answer: a w

21. _____refers to explaining the purpose of a study to participants after completion of data collection, and _____ refers to not telling the participants the truth about the purpose of the study. a. deception; debriefing b. debriefing; informed consent c. informed consent; debriefing d. debriefing; deception

Answer: d 22. To ensure ethical standards, research proposals are typically reviewed by: a. an ethics committee. b. an institutional review board. c. a deception and debriefing board. d. all of these Answer: b


24 • CHAPTER 2

23. An _____ helps to determine whether participants are _____ or _____. a. IRB; debriefed; not b. IRB; at risk; at minimal risk c. informed consent; debriefed; not d. informed consent; at risk; at minimal risk Answer: b 24. A committee charged with evaluating research projects in which human participants are used is a(n): a. Institutional Review Board. b. Informed Consent Committee. c. Debriefing Committee. d. Anti-deception Board. Answer: a 25. A form given to individuals before they participate in a study to inform them of the general nature of the study and to obtain their consent to participate is a (n): a. IRB Form. b. Informed Consent Form. c. Debriefing Form. d. Compliance Form. Answer: b 26. Providing information about the true purpose of a study as soon after the completion of data collection as possible is referred to as: a. the anti-deception technique. b. compliance. c. debriefing. d. informed consent. Answer: c 27. _____ research is defined as research involving no more risk than that encountered in daily life or during the performance of routine physical or psychological examinations or tests. a. Moderate risk b. No risk c. High risk d. Minimal risk Answer: d w

28. If confidentiality is compromised, then human participants: a. are considered at risk. b. are most definitely not at risk. c. should not be used in the study. d. are at risk and should not be used in the study.

Answer: a


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29. When children are used as research participants: a. informed consent is not necessary. b. informed consent must be obtained from the parents or legal guardians. c. confidentiality does not matter. d. the issue of “risk” is not important. Answer: b 30. The APA guidelines address several issues with respect to animal welfare. These include all of the following EXCEPT: a. a justification for the study must be provided. b. the researchers must ensure that the care and housing of the animals meets federal regulations. c. the animals may be acquired from any source. d. the personnel interacting with the animals are well trained. Answer: c Short Answer/Essay Questions 1. Explain the difference in use between the Psychological Abstracts and the Social Science Citation Index. The Psychological Abstracts allow you to search based on topic. Thus, one can search the abstracts for a certain topic along with other parameters such as date of publication, or type of publication. The Social Science Citation Index allows one to search for subsequent articles that have cited a key article. 2. Explain what deception and debriefing are. Deception involves lying to the participants concerning the true nature of a study because knowing the true nature of the study might affect their performance. Debriefing involves providing information about the true purpose of a study as soon after the completion of data collection as possible. 3. When is it acceptable to use deception in a research study? Psychologists only use deception in a research study when they have determined that the use of deceptive techniques is justified by the study’s significant prospective scientific, educational, or applied value and that effective nondeceptive alternative procedures are not feasible. 4. Participants can be classified as “at risk” or “at minimal risk”. What is the difference? Participants “at minimal risk” are place under no more physical or emotional risk than would be encountered in daily life or in routine physical or psychological examinations or tests. Participants “at risk” are those at risk for physical or emotional harm or those whose privacy is compromised—in other words, the results from the study are not completely confidential.

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