Social Psychology Research: Bias and Ethics;

Social Psychology Research: Bias and Ethics;
As a student of psychology, it is important to fully understand how research is conducted, as well as the numerous issues associated with sound research. Two important research issues are bias and ethics. When a research study is biased, either by the study design, the participants (subject bias), or the conduct of the study or interpretation of the results (experimenter bias), the results may be misleading. When practitioners then apply the results of the study to a real world situation, the impact may be ineffective, may achieve different results than expected, or may even be harmful. Unbiased research is essential.
Another important consideration in psychological research is ethics. Any research must be ethical in how it is conducted and how the results are used. A high level of ethics is especially critical when it comes to research involving human subjects, which is the case with most psychological research. Ethics in research involves honesty, objectivity, integrity, carefulness and competence, openness, respect for intellectual property, respect for privacy, confidentiality, responsible publication of findings, social responsibility, non-discrimination, legality, care of animals for those studies involving animals, and protection of the rights of human subjects.
This Assignment asks you to analyze a social psychology research article for bias and ethics. The skills acquired can be applied to a critique of any scientific research study.
To prepare for this assignment:
• Review Chapter 1 of the course text, Social Psychology, focusing on research bias and research ethics.
• Watch the “Research Methods” video from the Contemporary Videos in Social Psychology DVD. Focus on the various problems that can be associated with different types of research.
• Read the online article, “What Is Ethics in Research and Why Is It Important?” Focus on the expectations of ethics for the scientific community, how results are used in the real world, and related ethical issues.
• Select one of the following articles from this week’s Learning Resources:
o “Intervening to Decrease Alcohol Abuse at University Parties: Differential Reinforcement of Intoxication Level”
o “An Attitude-Behavior Model of Salespeople’s Customer Orientation”
o “Prosocial and Antisocial Behavior in Preadolescence: Teachers’ and Parents’ Perceptions of the Behavior of Girls and Boys”
o “The Self-Protective Altruist: Terror Management and the Ambivalent Nature of Prosocial Behavior”
o “A Cross-Cultural Study of Environmental Motive Concerns and Their Implications for Proenvironmental Behavior”
• Read your selected article thoroughly and think about the following questions:
What was the purpose of this research study?
How were the participants selected?
What kind of design is the study? (correlational or experimental)
How was data collected?
Where might bias exist in the study and for how was it controlled?
What might be the implications of bias in this study? In other words, if the results of this study were applied in real life and bias was indeed present, what might be the results?
Was the study conducted ethically? If so, what strategies did the researchers use to assure that the study was conducted ethically? If not, what could they have done differently?
The assignment -1 pages, APA style format, No Plagiarism and must be cited with references and use resources provided below to do this assignment. Thank you
Analyze the article you selected by responding to the following questions:
(1).Briefly, what was the purpose of the study and what were the main findings?
(2).Where could bias exist in the study design, in the conduct of the study, in the behavior of the study subjects as they participate in the study, or the interpretation of results? Did the research do anything to help control for bias? Explain. If there is potential bias in the study, how might this impact the use of the study results in the real world or in future research? If the researchers controlled for bias, what might be the results if they had not controlled for bias?
(3).Was the study conducted ethically? Explain in terms of the information you learned in the assigned readings. Would you implement additional strategies to assure an ethical study? Explain.
• Course Text: Taylor, S. E., Peplau, L. A., & Sears, D. O. (2006). Social psychology (12th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall.
o Chapter 1, “Theories and Methods in Social Psychology” (pp. 2–31)
• Article: Resnik, D. (n.d.). What is ethics in research and why is it important? Retrieved July 6, 2008, from
Your choice of one of the following articles:
• Fournier, A., Ehrhart, I., Glindemann, K., & Geller, E. (2004). Intervening to decrease alcohol abuse at university parties: Differential reinforcement of intoxication level. Behavior Modification, 28(2), 167–181. Retrieved from
• Stock, R., & Hoyer, W. (2005). An attitude-behavior model of salespeople’s customer orientation. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 33(4), 536–552. Retrieved from
• Veenstra, R., Lindenberg, S., Oldehinkel, A., De Winter, A., Verhulst, F., & Ormel, J. (2008). Prosocial and antisocial behavior in preadolescence: teachers’ and parents’ perceptions of the behavior of girls and boys. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 32(3), 243–251. Retrieved from
• Hirschberger, G., Ein-Dor, T., & Almakias, S. (2008). The self-protective altruist: Terror management and the ambivalent nature of prosocial behavior. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34(5), 666–678. Retrieved from
Milfont, T., Duckitt, J., & Cameron, L. (2006). A cross-cultural study of environmental motive concerns and their implications for proenvironmental behavior. Environment & Behavior, 38(6), 745–767. Retrieved from
• Pearson/Prentice Hall. (Executive Producer). (2007). Contemporary videos in social psychology [DVD]. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Author.
o “Introducing Social Psychology”
Click here to access a transcript for “Introducing Social Psychology”
o “Research Methods”
Click here to access a transcript for “Research Methods”
With these Learning Resources in mind, please proceed to the Discussion.