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A study was conducted to see if there are gender differences in how aggressive boys and girls are.

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Introduction

Scenario One A study was conducted to see if there are gender differences in how aggressive boys and girls are. The method to be used for this study is an observation, specifically a naturalistic observation. A naturalistic observation is a non-experimental method. It is where participant's behaviour is observed in their natural environment. The observer has to be unobtrusive so that participants are unaware of being observed. This method was chosen because it observes naturally occurring behaviour, which is not controlled or manipulated in any way. Advantages of a naturalistic observation are that they have high ecological validity. They are valid to real life situations. Material from naturally occurring situations can be collected, in instances where engineering the situation would be unethical. Also, naturalistic observations enable a hypothesis to be determined which can then be tested experimentally. Disadvantages of a naturalistic observation are that it is difficult to control confounding variables. Also, if people know that they are being observed it may lead them to behave differently. Naturalistic observations cannot easily be repeated and therefore it is difficult to know the reliability of the results. It is also very difficult to control the objectiveness of an observer. One way around this is to record video, which can be observed by a number of observers. It is also not possible to distinguish a relationship between cause and effect as there is no manipulation of the independent variable. In this study the independent variable is the gender of the participants. The dependant variable is the aggressiveness of the participants. This can be measured by scoring how many times a participant adopts behaviour that has been characterised as being aggressive. An equal number of boys and girls could be observed in a school playground. A list of aggressive behaviours can be produced previous to the observation. Whilst observing the individuals, a tally of how many times these behaviours occur for each individual can be recorded. ...read more.

Middle

The dependant variable is whether the participants give money or not. The dependant variable is measured by recording how many times a participant gives money. The aim of this experiment is to find out if individuals are more or less likely to help another individual when another person helps or doesn't help. The experimental hypothesis is that if the confederate helps, there will be an effect on if the participants are more likely or less likely to help. The null hypothesis is that the confederate helping will have no effect on if the participants are more or less likely to help. It is a two-tailed hypothesis because the participant may be more likely or less likely to help. The data obtained from this experiment is categorical data, where each person falls into one group; helpers or non-helpers. The statistical test used for this experiment is the Chi-Squared Test. This is because there is an association between conditions. The results obtained are non-parametric. Table of Results Participant Helps Participant Does Not Help Confederate Helps 8 2 Confederate Does Not Help 2 8 Conclusion The experimental hypothesis is supported and the null hypothesis is rejected. If the confederate helps, there is an effect on if the participants are more likely or less likely to help. The outcome was that they are more likely to help. Also if the confederate does not help, there is an effect on if the participants are more likely or less likely to help. They are less likely to help. Evaluation of Experiment A psychologist wanted to see, if having observed a person helping/not helping another one out, does it make them more likely/less likely to help. The independent measures design used in this experiment, tested different people in each condition of the experiment. Because of this, the participant's variables may have confounded any effects. Participants may have had other influencing factors as to why they were not prepared to give money, such as not having enough money with them to spare any. ...read more.

Conclusion

The non-dog owners rated their mean feeling of security to be just 3.7 out of 10. This suggests that having a pet dog in the house does increase people's feelings of security. Conclusion The experimental hypothesis is supported and the null hypothesis is rejected. Having a pet dog in the house will increase people's feelings of security. This is proven because the average security rating at night for dog owners is higher than that of non-dog owners. Evaluation of Experiment The aim of this experiment was to see if having a pet dog in the house increases people's feelings of security. A matched pairs design was used for this experiment. Because of this, participant variable differences are minimised. This biggest disadvantage is that there are more participants needed to fill conditions. The experiment took place with participants own home therefore it is ecologically valid. However the fact the participant were in their own homes may have given them a false sense of security. They may have felt less secure in another location. Also security rating may differ with different times of the year e.g. lighter nights and darker nights. It also does not take in to consideration if the participants live alone or with a partner. There is always the problem of demand characteristics and unhonest answers. Participant may feel embarrassed to say if they feel insecure. This experiment is free from experimenter bias as the participant's rate their own feelings and it can be replicated for reliability. I think there is a clear relationship between owning a dog and feeling secure, and the experiment does measure was it was intended for measuring, so it can be considered to be valid. However if it were to be repeated, other influencing factors relating to security need to be controlled. The results support the experimental hypothesis that having a pet dog in the house will increase people's feelings of security. The average security rating at night for dog owners is higher than that of non-dog owners. These are the results that I would have expected to have found. ...read more.

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