University of Baltimore   Division of Applied Behavioral Sciences    


Research Methods APPL 632


Sign up with Sona system: Participation in Research

  Websites for Psychology

Langsdale Library course website

LibGuides (Lucy Holman) very useful for help with research projects

American Psychological Association
Association for Psychological Science
Psychological Research on the Net (APS)
Psychological Journals Online (Hanover College)

Cozby, P. C. (2001). Methods in behavioral research. (7th edition). Mountain View, CA: Mayfield.
Statistics Homepage
SPSS helper (UCLA)
Research Methods Tutorial

Journals of interest to this class:

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (APA)
Journal of Applied Psychology (APA)

Psychological Bulletin
Annual Review of Psychology

Sources attached to this syllabus:

Greek Alphabet
Kerlinger definitions of theory and other key terms
Tips for writing a paper (ARC Nancy Bates)
Questions to critique an experimental report
Guide for writing experimental reports

American Psychological Association (1995)  Publication manual of the American Psychological Association
Using APA format for manuscripts
APA (tips on style)

I. Course Information
     A.  Catalog description: The analysis of experimental and statistical designs used to investigate researchable questions. Special emphasis placed upon the translation of research findings to applied settings.

     B.  Course description: This course will provide a detailed description of fundamental research methods with their associated statistical procedures.

II. Objectives of course:

The primary objective of this course is to prepare the student to critically evaluate the validity, adequacy and relevance of psychological research. The student will learn the relative merits of various methods of studying behavior, and the circumstances under which each is appropriately applied.

III. General Goals:

 A. To provide the student with an understanding of how various research designs can be used to answer questions about  behavior.
 B. Understand the process of research including shortcomings of the various designs and practical difficulties that arise in  conducting research.
 C.  Develop a sound understanding of how statistical tools are used to describe and analyze data.

IV.  Class format: Assigned material will be discussed and clarified. Class time will also be used to discuss students' SPSS lab projects.

V. Texts for course:

Required:  Rosenthal, R. & Rosnow, R. (2008). Essentials of Behavioral Research: Methods and Data Analysis 3rd Ed. McGraw-Hill
                    ISBN: 978-0-07-353196-0   

Optional:  APA (2009). Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th edition

                   Morgan, S. E., Reichert, T. & Harrison, T. R. (2002). From Numbers to Words: Reporting statistical results for the
                   social sciences.
Allyn & Bacon, Pub.   ISBN 0 8013-3280-X

VI. Assessment: (each component is graded on a 100 point scale: 
        A (90-100), B (80-89), C (70-79), F (<70)

Exams: midterm and final exams (30% each)        60%
Three SPSS data analysis labs    (10% each)        30%
Submission of Chapter questions                        10%       
                                                             total    100%

Notes: If you expect to miss a class, it your responsibility to make sure you get notes or  handouts and changes in assignments.
            *** Assignments turned in late will result in a reduction in grade points ****

VII Requirements for SPSS data analysis labs (research projects)

    (See Guide for writing SPSS lab project reports)
    Tips for writing a paper (ARC Nancy Bates)
(see Critique questions to critique an experimental report)
effect and affect...know the difference!!!!

    Other sources for writing the research report

     Cozby: See: Appendix A: Writing Research Reports
     Cozby: See: Guides for writing research reports   
    Quality of SPSS lab project reports The important aspects in judging quality will be: 

1. development of the literature review
2. creativity of the design (be sure to cite reference if you borrow from an existing design)
3. reporting of results 
4. drawing conclusions from the findings*
5. quality of writing

*This means integrating the literature (theories and opinions), offering explanations for resolving conflicting research findings, and drawing reasonable conclusions based on your research hypotheses.

Grammar/proofreading: It is imperative that the papers be grammatically correct and edited carefully. You must include a definitive title and a half page abstract.

Length: The three lab project papers must be in APA style and no longer than 5 pages including tables and figures (not including references).

Original sources: You will be expected to find original sources for your references. Secondary sources may be cited, but only rarely and only if the original is unavailable from the University of Maryland library system.

Class attendance and submission of assignments is essential. Failure to submit assignments when due and may result in a decrement of your grade.

Policy on Academic Integrity (Plagiarism): see more detail at Plagiarism (Tulane)

"Plagiarism is the intentional or unintentional presentation of another person's idea or product as one's own. Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to the following: copying verbatim all or part of another's written work; using phrases, charts, figures, illustrations, or mathematical or scientific solutions without citing the source; paraphrasing ideas, conclusions, or research without citing the source; and using all or part of a literary plot, poem, film, musical score, or other artistic product without attributing the work to its creator. Students can avoid unintentional plagiarism by carefully accepted scholarly practices. Notes taken for papers and research projects should accurately record sources of material to be cited, quoted, paraphrased, or summarized, and papers should acknowledge these sources in footnotes." (Anonymous).

Chapters assigned and anticipated dates of tests:
Week & Date   Assignments  see: Discussion questions for Chapters in R & R (click on Chapter)

  Week 1: Sept  1  Chapter 1 Spirit of Behavioral Research (p. 3)
                                Review of Syllabus

                                SPSS lab projects

                                Statistics Homepage                               

  Week 2: Sept 8    Chapter 2 Contexts of Discovery and Justification (p. 37)
                         Discussion of Lab topics topics
Kerlinger's definitions of theory and other key terms
                               Construct Validity

Read the following articles to see how constructs are operationally defined:                                               
Affective style and in vivo immune response: Neurobehavioral mechanisms
                               Phone conversations tax Drivers' minds

Forget Gum: Walking and Using Phone is Risky, NYT 1/18/10

 Relations between alpha, beta, power

                               R&R Effect size pdf
                               Effect size indicators (Becker at UCCS                              

Week 3: Sept 15   Chapter 3 Ethical Considerations, Dilemmas, and Guidelines (p. 61)
                        Office of Human Research Protections (OHRP)

                             APA Ethical Principles and Guidelines  
                        Chapter 10 (REVIEW) Describing, Displaying, and Exploring Data (p. 293)
                        Scales of Measurement ppt.
Variance calculator/linear regression/correlation calculator

                        Importing SPSS tables and figures into MS Word       

                        Reading: Schroeder et al. (1985) (handout)
Maps for theory, procedures, etc.
                              Cold Fusion: Another chance. Does theory matter? Cost of Type II error                             

 Week 4: Sept 22    Chapter 4 Reliability and Validity of Measurements (p. 87)
                               Chapter 11 (REVIEW) Correlation (p. 314)
                     Interrater reliability and agreement Excel  file
                         Chi Squared (Ppoint) for nominal data 

                                Fisher's exact test for small expected values 
                               Categorical Data Analysis (Prentice Hall Ppoint)                                          

Week 5:  Sept 29  Chapter 6 Questionnaires, Interviews, and Diaries (p. 160)
                                Chapter 13
(REVIEW) Comparing Means by Standard t tests  (p. 381)

                       ***Lab 1 DUE: Hypothetical Relationships ***

Toronto Star article: TV Violence
                                If a women is catty is it due to hormones? You decide (Balt Sun article) 

    Week 6:  Oct 6    Chapter 7 Randomized Controlled Experiments and Causal Inferences (p. 189)
                                  Please read for discussion the article:
WSJ article on experimenter expectancy (Rosenthal) 

                                   *** Review Midterm ***                                   

 Week 7: Oct 13            ******** Midterm Exam ***************  Bring blue book

Week 8:  Oct 20   Chapter 9 Randomly and Nonrandomly Selected Sampling Units (p. 260)                                                                 

 Week 9:  Oct 27   Chapter 14 Analysis of Variance and the F test (p. 409)

                            *** Lab 2 DUE: One Way ANOVA  ***      

 Week 10: Nov 3   Chapter 16 Factorial Analysis of Variance (p. 461) 
                               Cozby Chapter Factorial designs  
                                Erwin Segal, Buffalo

Week 11:  Nov 10    Chapter 17 Interaction Effects in ANOVA (p. 499)                    

Week 12: Nov 17   Chapter 18 Repeated Measures in ANOVA (p. 527)

                                ****  Lab 3 DUE: 2 Way ANOVA **

Week 13: Nov 24  
Discussion of Multiple Regression
                                G. David Garson North Carolina State
                       Multiple Regression   

Week 14:  Dec 1   Chapter 21 Meta-Analysis: Comparing and Considering Research Results (p. 663)

                            *** Review Final Exam ***

Week 15:  Dec 8 **Final Exam -- bring blue book **

Readings: (Handouts)

Schroeder, D. A., Johnson, D. E., & Jensen, T. D. (1985). Reading research reports: A brief introduction. In Contemporary Readings in Social Psychology. Schroeder, Johnson, Jensen; (Eds.). Nelson-Hall: Chicago. p35-42.