You are here

Conducting Research in Psychology

Conducting Research in Psychology
Measuring the Weight of Smoke

Fifth Edition

August 2018 | 624 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Conducting Research in Psychology: Measuring the Weight of Smoke provides students an engaging introduction to psychological research by employing humor, stories, and hands-on activities.

Through its methodology exercises, learners are encouraged to use their intuition to understand research methods and to apply basic research principles to novel problems. Authors Brett W. Pelham and Hart Blanton integrate cutting-edge updates, including implicit biases measurement controversies, online data collection, and new tools for determining the replicability of a set of research findings. The Fifth Edition broadens its coverage of methodologies to reflect the types of research now conducted by psychologists. Two new chapters accommodate the needs of instructors who incorporate student research projects into their courses.

A Note to Students
Chapter 1: How Do We Know?
Introduction: What This Text Is About  
A Brief History of Human Knowledge  
The Four Canons of Science  
Four Ways of Knowing About the World  
Chapter 2: How Do We Find Out? The Logic, Art, and Ethics of Scientific Discovery
The Logic of Scientific Discovery  
The Art of Scientific Discovery  
The Ethics of Scientific Discovery  
Chapter 3: In a Nutshell: A Conceptual Overview of Psychological Research Methods
A Tale of Two Validities  
Three Requirements for Establishing Causality  
Experiments: Fulfilling Mill’s Requirements  
Passive Observational (Non-experimental) Research Methods  
Trade-offs between Internal and External Validity  
GAGES: The “Big Five” of Worrisome Confounds  
External Validity and the OOPS! Heuristic  
Oops! He Did It Again: Maximinzing External Validity in the Lab  
Gauging GAGES in Archival Studies of Social Cognition  
Chapter 4: Making It Happen: A Hands-on Guide to a First Research Project
Step 1: Hypothesis Generation (IDEA)  
Step 2: Operationalization (Design)  
Step 3: Permission  
Step 4: Execution (Data Collection)  
Step 5: Calculation (Data Analysis)  
Step 6: Communication  
Chapter 5: Moving From Fact to Truth: Validity, Reliability, and Measurement
Three Strange Stories  
Reliability, Validity, and the “More Is Better” Rule  
Measurement Scales  
Chapter 6: Moving From Notions to Numbers: Psychological Measurement
Converting Notions to Numbers: The Two Major Challenges  
The Response Translation Phase  
From Writing Questions to Creating Scales  
Chapter 7: How Do We Misinterpret? Common Threats to Validity
One Strange and Lucrative Story  
People Are Different  
People Change  
The Process of Studying People Changes People  
Moving From Three Threats to Two: Confounds and Artifacts  
Chapter 8: Nonexperimental Research Designs
Describing the World of a Single Participant: Case Studies  
Describing the State of the World at Large: Single-Variable Research  
Describing Associations: Multiple-Variable Research  
Archival Research  
Observational Research  
Confounds Can Be Measured, Too!  
Chapter 9: Experience Carefully Planned: Experimental Research Designs
A Wonderful Method  
A Brief History of True Experiments  
Strengths of True Experiments  
Are True Experiments Realistic?  
Is There a Recipe for Experimental Realism?  
Trade-Offs Between Internal and External Validity  
The “How-To”s of Laboratory Studies  
Chapter 10: Experience Carefully Exploited: Quasi-Experimental Research Designs
One Very Old Story  
Why Quasi-Experiments?  
Kinds of Quasi-Experiments  
Patched-Up Designs  
When True Experiments and Quasi-Experiments Collide  
Chapter 11: Choosing the Right Research Design
One Obscure Movie  
One-Way Designs  
Factorial Designs  
Within-Subjects Designs  
Mixed-Model Designs  
Chapter 12: A Brief Course in Statistics
How Numbers and Language Revolutionized Human History  
Descriptive Statistics  
Inferential Statistics  
Things That Go Bump in the Light: Factors That Influence the Results of Significance Tests  
The Changing State of the Art: Alternate Perspectives on Statistical Hypothesis Testing  
Chapter 13: Telling the World About It
The Hourglass Approach to Empirical Research Papers  
Some Rules to Writing Research Papers  
How to Give a Good Talk in Psychology (by Daniel T. Gilbert)  
Appendix 1: Hands-On Activities
Appendix 2: Methodology Exercises
Appendix 3: Putting Your Knowledge to Work: 24 Methodology Problems
Appendix 4: An Example of an APA-Style Research Paper: Ethnicity and the Risk of Unwarranted Cesarean Birth in the U.S.
Name Index
Subject Index
Key features
  • Two new hands-on chapters guide students through the nuts and bolts of designing and carrying out research.
    • Chapter 3 offers a conceptual overview of psychological research methods by spelling out the essential ingredients of good research and by providing two simple rubrics for evaluation research.
    • Chapter 4 provides a careful summary of the process of designing and carrying out research.
  • Extensively updated online resources include over 250 new student self-test questions and over 250 new instructor test bank questions written and validated by the authors.
  • Over 100 new references to classic and and contemporary papers that all illuminate the secrets to good research design.
  • A humorous writing style helps make the book highly accessible and enjoyable for readers.
  • A hands-on, common sense approach to research uncovers the excitement that comes from actually conducting research through lively examples and stories supplemented with engaging exercises.
  • Bolded and italicized terms throughout the text and in a glossary help readers identify important theoretical and technical terms.
  • Major and minor subheadings help readers organize knowledge and identify themes in each chapter.  

Preview this book