Assignment: Social Psychology

Designing a Study in Social Psychology

For this assignment, you will design your very own psychology experiment or study. You will be creating a research proposal, modeled after actual research proposals (visit this link for an example research proposal), although yours will not need to be as long. Your finished product should be between 4-6 pages in 12 pt. font.

STEP 1: Pick a topic. Consider a topic within social psychology that interests you. Think of how you could design an experiment to test this theory. If you have a hard time thinking of an experiment, think of common proverbs or sayings and consider ways to test these proverbs. Possible proverbs to test include:

  • Absence makes the heart grow fonder
  • Opposites attract
  • Birds of a feather flock together
  • Love is blind
  • There’s no such thing as love at first sight
  • A friend in need is a friend indeed
  • Familiarity breeds contempt
  • Spare the rod and spoil the child
  • You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours
  • Too many cooks spoil the broth
  • True love never grows old
  • You can’t please everyone
  • Good fences make good neighbors
  • Honesty is the best policy
  • Actions speak louder than words

PART 1: Introduction/Abstract. Write a paragraph or two as an overview about your research proposal. Include the theory you are testing as well as your hypothesis.

PART 2: Literature Review/Background. Provide context for why you chose this topic and how your study will build off of other research. Find an academic study that has already been done related to your topic. Write a summary of what you learn from the article. You need to do this with at least TWO peer-reviewed journal articles. Peer-reviewed articles come from journals like those at the APA website, and not from simple Google searches or news websites. Most journals require a paid subscription but you can typically access them through your school library free of charge. Proper APA citations should be included. This should be roughly 1-2 pages in length.

PART 3: Method. Consider all of the questions below as you write out this main section of your research proposal. This should be roughly 1-2 pages in length.

  • Who will participate in your study?
  • What will you sampling process be?
  • How will you control against bias?
  • If an experiment, what are the independent and dependent variables?
  • What is a participant in the study going to do?
  • How will you collect the data?

PART 4: Results/Conclusion/Discussion. Write a summary paragraph about how you could and would utilize the results of your experiment.

  • How will you analyze your results?
  • What kind of statistical analysis will you need to do?
  • What results would either confirm or disprove your hypothesis?
  • In what way will the results of this study be beneficial?

Rubric:

Sample Grading Rubric
Criteria Proficient Developing Not Evident  Points
Overall paper Topic is connected to psychology and the overall paper utilizes good grammar, is easy to read, and between 4-6 pages in 12 pt. font. Topic is okay and/or paper has a few errors. Possibly too long or too short. Poor choice of topic or paper is difficult to read/contains many typos __/4
 Introduction/Abstract Includes an excellent introduction/abstract that explains the study in general terms. Identifies hypothesis. Includes an introduction/abstract that explains the study in general terms. Identifies hypothesis. Insufficient or non-existent introduction and hypothesis  __/5
Literature Review Finds at least TWO scholarly articles related to the topic for the literature review. Review is concise, informative, and properly cited. Finds ONE scholarly article or literature review is not fully developed Does not include scholarly articles or provides insufficient details in the literature review __/10
 Methods Clearly explains who will participate in the study, how they will be selected, and how this will control against bias. Explains who will participate in the study, how they will be selected, and how this will control against bias. Does not explain who will participate in the study, how they will be selected, and/or how this will control against bias. __/10
 Results Includes a detailed conclusion that considers the value of the potential results, and how results could prove or disprove the hypothesis. Conclusion that considers the results but lacks detail about how results could prove or disprove the hypothesis Insufficient conclusion __/7
 Citations Includes a reference page with at least 2 correct APA citations Includes a reference page with less than two correct APA citations Does not include reference page or correct references  __/4
 Total: __/40

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