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Do females have larger colour vocabularies than males? OCR psychology coursework

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Do Females have larger colour vocabularies? Contents Title Page Number Abstract 3 Introduction 4 Hypotheses 5 Method 6 Results 8 Discussion 9 Appendix 1 10 Appendix 2 11 References 12 Abstract This experiment's aim was to see whether females had larger colour vocabularies than males. Previous studies such as that by Thomas, Curtis and Bolton (1978) show that women have an extensive colour vocabulary when compared to men. Robin Lacoff suggests that women take part in more colour-based activities, for example, clothes shopping, where one would mix and match colours to create a scheme. Women therefore should have a larger database of colour related words than men. Following the results from these previous studies, it was expected that females would generate more colour words than males. The sample consisted of 16 participants aged 16-19 from a sixth form college in the south of England, participants were selected by opportunity sampling. There were 8 male and 8 female participants. Using an independent measures design, the participants were asked to write down as many colour words as they could within two minutes, the number of words written at the end of the two minutes was the dependant variable. The Mann-Whitney U-test was then used and this showed that the results were significantly different between conditions at p<0.025 and the experimental hypothesis was accepted. ...read more.


* Pens * Stopwatch Measurement and Analysis The experiment generated ordinal data as the results could be placed in rank order from the most number of colour words recalled to the least. Since the design was independent groups, the Mann-Whitney U-test was used for the statistical test. Ethics The instruction slip asked for consent from the participants, offered a withdrawal option both before or during the experiment and explained that the participant's could remove their data after the experiment. It also made clear that confidentiality would be kept; names were not asked for and results were not disclosed. Protection of participants was maintained as participants were informed that their results were normal and throughout the experiment they were not asked to do anything that could cause potential mental or physical harm. Finally, the participants were debriefed and asked if they had any questions. Results A table to summarise the numbers of colour words listed in each condition: Male Condition Female Condition Mean 18.4 23 Median 19 22 Mode - 22 Range 8 10 A visual display of the mean results: Results of the statistical analysis using the Mann-Whitney U-Test: Observed Value of U Critical Value of U (p<0.05) for a one-tailed test Level of significance 13 15 p<0.025 The observed value of U (13) is equal to the critical value at p<0.025, therefore females recalled significantly more colour words than males to accept the experimental hypothesis and reject the null hypothesis. ...read more.


-49 2 U2=64 + 36 -49 U2=100 -49 U2=51 U1 is lower than U2 and so therefore becomes the observed value of U. The critical value when n1 and n2 (participants in each condition) equals 8 is 15. The observed value of U is below to the critical value of U at the 1-in-40 value and so the difference between conditions is therefore significant. Appendix 2 The instruction slip given to the participants at the beginning of the experiment: This experiment is designed to see whether males or females are better at recalling colour words. You will be given a blank piece of paper and a pen, you will then be given 2 minutes to write down as many colour words as you can recall. After the time has ended the experimenter will then take back in your list of recalled colour words. You have the opportunity to withdraw, before, during and after the experiment by the way of having your data/results removed. Results from the experiment will remain fully confidential and will only be used for this experiment. If you have a query do not hesitate the experimenter at any time during the experiment. By continuing with the experiment you are giving your consent to participate. Do you have any questions? References ELAINE RICH (1977), Sex related differences in colour vocabulary, 'Language and Speech', Vol. 20, Part 4. Pages 404 - 409 Studies found using google search engine: http://www.colormatters.com/khouw.html LAKOFF, R. (1975). Language and Woman's Place. ...read more.

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