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Outline and evaluate research into short term stressors

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´╗┐Outline and evaluate research into short term stressors (12) The aim of Kiecolt-Glaser et al was to investigate whether the stress of important examinations had an effect on the functioning of the immune system. It was a natural experiment using 75 medical students. The experiment took two blood tests from each participant. Blood test 1 was taken one month before the final examination and blood test 2 was taken during the final examination which was highly stressful. The blood was analysed and the immune function was assessed by measuring the amount of T cells. Students were also given a questionnaire to asses other variables. The findings of this experiment were that T cell activity significantly reduced in the 2nd blood sample. ...read more.


The experiment took place in a laboratory. The procedure measured T cells by taking a blood sample before and after being exposed to loud noise and electric shock. The findings of this experiment were that the T cell count in the 2nd blood test (after electric shock) was considerably less compared to the count of T cells before the electric shock. The conclusions we can draw from this experiment are that short term stressors reduce T cell count and so decreases immune function. Both experiments use a blood sample which is objective, they also both use empirical methods which makes them both a valid scientific experiment. Both experiments are easily replicable which means they have high reliability. Kiecolt-Glaser et al's experiment lacks population validity because all students are of similar age and have a high IQ. ...read more.


unlike the robin experiment which took place in a laboratory and therefore does not reflect the real world and makes the findings difficult to generalise. The batman experiment also avoids ethical issues due to the stress happening anyway and not being provoked as part of the experiment. The experiment done by Weiss et al has high internal validity because the independent variable (loud noise/electric shock) reflects the dependant variable (stress). We can be sure of this due to the fact that it was a highly controlled laboratory experiment. Weaknesses of the Weiss et al experiment are the ethical issues. The purpose of the experiment is to create stress and the means of creating this stress could harm a participant and make them feel uncomfortable however this is overcome but the right to withdraw and being offered counselling for any distress caused. ...read more.

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