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When it comes to researching information in
Psychology there are different methods that are used. The methods can be
experimental and non-experimental.  In
the experiment, an independent variable is manipulated and the dependant
variable is measured. Any other variables are able to be controlled. The
positive of the experiment would be that the views and opinions researcher should
not affect the result of the study, this makes the experiment more objective,
more valid and less bias. The non- experimental methods are case studies,
interviews, questionnaire. When it comes to non-experimental research is
a study that the researcher cannot control or manipulate. However, it relies on
interpretation, observation or interaction when trying to carry out the conclusion.
The researchers have to rely on surveys, interviews or case studies and cannot
able to carry out the true cause of the study.


Firstly, there are three types of experimental
methods and the first one is Controlled experiment. This is carried in well-
controlled environment. The researchers is able to decide on when the
experiment will take place, what time it will happen, what participates will
take part, in what circumstances and using a standardized procedure. When it
comes to participants, they are all randomly allocated to each of the independent
group. For example, Migrants experiment (1963). Stanley
Milgram, a psychologist at Yale University, conducted an experiment focusing on
the conflict between obedience to authority and personal conscience. Stanley Milgram was
interested in how easily ordinary people could be influenced into committing
atrocities, for example, Germans in WWII. “Instead, Milgram wanted to investigate
participants’ willingness to go along with the experimenter’s instructions.
Would they deliver what appeared to be lethal shocks to a stranger, simply
because this was what another stranger required them to do in the con- text of
a mundane science experiment? “This shows that Milgram (1963) was interested in
researching how far people would go in obeying an instruction if it involved
harming another person. The Strength of the controlled experiment is much
easier to replicate rather than non-experimental method. This is because the standardized
procedure is used in the experiment. Also, they allow for precise control
extraneous and independent variable. However, the limitations of the controlled
experiment are that the setting may course unwanted behaviour that would not reflect
to the real-life setting. This means that it would be much harder to
generalized the findings.

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The second method in the experiment would be field
experiments, this is carried out in everyday life of the participants. When the
experiment happens, the experimenter is still able to manipulate the independent
variable, but in real life scenarios, however they are not really able to control
the extraneous variable. For example, Hofling (1966) carried out study
that was more obedience than Milgram’s this is because it was carried out in
real life environment. The fiend study was carried out on nurses, they were unaware
that they are taking part in the experiment.  The nurses were asked to give the wrong dose
to the patient, even though it said that the his dose was 10mg , the nurse was
to give 20 mg instead by the doctor who phoned in. The dose was not actually real,
but the nurses though that the medication was real. The nurses were watched to
see how they would react.  

The strength
of this study was that the data was reliable because it took part in real life situation,
however the limitation was that it not ethical as the doctor was not real.






The strength
of this experiment would be that the field experiment is more likely to reflect
the real-life setting, this is because its happens in natural everyday setting.
Another advantage would be that there would be less likelihood of demand
characteristics affecting the field experimental results, this is because participants
would not know that they are being studied, also it would be much harder for
another researcher to replicate this study exactly the same. This is because the
setting would not be the same and the participants would most likely to react

third methods would be natural experiments, this is carried out in everyday
life setting of the participates that are taking part. However, the
experimenter is not able to control any of the variables this is because as it is
taking in natural environment there is no control over it. For example, Jill
Hodges and Barbara Tizard (1989) followed the development of 65 children who
had been in residential nurseries from only a few months old. This is
known as a longitudinal study. The study was also a field experiment. The
independent variable (what happened to the children at age 4) occurred
naturally. The care provided was of good quality, but carers were discouraged
from forming attachments with the children. By age 4, 24 children were
adopted, 15 returned to their natural home (restored), and the rest stayed in institutions.
They were also compared with a control group, who had spent all their lives in
their own families. The control group was closely matched to the children in
the experimental group. The children were assessed for social and emotional
competence at four, eight and sixteen years old. The assessment comprised
interviewing the children and their parents and teachers and a set of


The advantage
of this experiment is that the behaviour in the everyday environment would be
able to reflect to the natural setting. Also, the behaviour would be less
likely to affect the results as the participants might not know that they are
studied. However, the limitation would be that it might be more expensive to
carry out and more time consuming and the experimenter would have no control on
the variable.

When it
comes to non-experimental research is a study that the researcher cannot
control or manipulate. However, it relies on interpretation, observation or interaction
when trying to carry out the conclusion. The researchers have to rely on surveys,
interviews or case studies and cannot able to carry out the true cause of the
study. In addition, the non-experimental research most likely to have high level
of external validity, this means that it can be based on larger populations of
the participants. Non-experimental
researchers are able to take the variables that cannot be manipulated and
controlled. The non-experimental design can study and examine questions
experimental researchers cannot.

One of the research methods that are being used the non-experimental
is case study. Case study is in depth investigation, data is
gathered from a variety of sources and by using several different methods. The
research may also continue for an extended period of time, so processes and
developments can be studied as they happen. For example, Hodges and Tizard’s
attachment research (1989) was also carried out by questionnaire and
interviews to be able to assess the children and to be able to analyse the
data, and carry out the conclusion.


The advantage of the case study is that is provides detailed information
about the topic. It uses qualitative data to analyse the information. Also,
another advantage would be that it provides insight for any further research
that can be developed. It helps to generate new ideas that can be analysed and
tested furthermore. However, the limitations of the case study are that the researchers
feeling and the view can manipulate the results that are found the in the case
study. A lot depends on the interpretation of the results that are found, because
people understand things differently. This makes the case studies much harder
to replicate. Also, the work can be bias, depending on the circumstances.  


Another method of research for non-experimental is
Questionnaire. This method can be described as a written interview, Questionnaire
contains questions that usually have a multiple choice or
it has space for the participants to write their answers. Questionnaires
are usually carried out face to face, post e.t. For example,
the advantage of the questionnaire is that it’s cheap, is able
to target a large audience. Also, it’s not time-consuming which means
that the researcher is able to get the results much faster than using the
experimental method. Most of the questionnaires are anonymous, which means
that participants don’t have to identify them self on the questionnaire.  However, the limitations of the
questionnaire are that the information might be not reliable, as people
might lie and not provide the real answer. In addition, it might be
difficult sometimes to find the group that the questionnaire is targeting
towards, which would mean that the data might be not as realisable.


In conclusion,
experiments and non-experimental methods are really important to be able to understand
and to analyse psychology. By doing the experiments we are able to see how
people work, and how your minds work. Experiment helps us to see how we can
improve, and opens us to more opportunities, gives as ideas to analyse in the
future. All of the experimented gives explain as how our minds work, and how we
can manipulate. Also, some of the experience show us how easy we can be manipulated
by other people, this might be because we don’t want to stand out from other.
With non-experimental methods, we can see what has already been done, what we
can research more. As there are a lot of case studies done, which allows us to
have a better understanding of the areas that we need to improve. Both of the
methods are important in order to understand how our world have improved and how
our minds work.







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