Step 2 is where the fun begins! We are going to get started writing and developing the “bones” of your research paper. I don’t expect you to have this perfect right off the bat. The whole purpose of dividing your paper into multiple stages before the final submission is to give you a chance to make mistakes. I think a lot of us procrastinate with writing because we feel overwhelmed by not knowing where to begin. Steps 1-5 are “low stakes,” meaning that they are not worth a large part of your final grade. Each step is an opportunity for you to build on your ideas, make improvements based on my feedback, and revise and clarify your thoughts so that you have a beautifully written finished product! I am here to help at every stage.
In Step 1, you collected five peer-reviewed, scholarly articles describing original research conducted within the field of psychology. For Step 2, you will develop your ability to assess claims based on the Three Claims, Four Validities framework in your text. You will begin by analyzing one article following the instructions below. In the next phase, Step 3, you will add two more articles to the paper following the same guidelines, creating one cohesive Literature Review of three somewhat related articles.
By now you should have read through each of your five articles. Choose the one that you feel you understand the best. I know these articles can be full of technical information that may be a bit confusing, but since we only work on one paper in this class, you have plenty of time to read them carefully, research confusing terms, and ask me for help if you need it. It is very important that the articles you select for the literature review be original research studies. You can review Step 1 instructions and resources for clarification on this, but one major hint is that the article will likely have some form of the following sections: an abstract, a literature review/ introduction, Participants, Methods/ Measures, Results/ Analysis, and Discussion. It will also have a long References list at the end. Here’s an example (Links to an external site.) of what I mean.
Step 2 Content
1. Briefly summarize the research study.
Article summaries flow best if they first discuss the reason the researchers sought to conduct their study (goals), briefly describe how they carried it out (methods/design), and then wrap up with what was discovered (findings/ conclusions). Scientific writing should be straightforward and concise. It isn’t easy to summarize a lot of information into few words, but that is your goal here. Summaries should be about a half-page.
state researcher’s hypotheses/study’s purpose
concise description of the methodologies used
summary of findings/conclusions
discuss whether the main conclusion is a frequency, association, or causal claim (consider both the methods used and the conclusions made when trying to determine the type of claim); this will help guide you in discussing the four validities.
2. Address each validity for the study as it relates to the claim made.
Remember that you are being asked to scrutinize, not criticize, the research based on each of the four main validities described in Chapter 3. Demonstrate to me that you understand what aspects of participant recruitment and selection, research design and methodology, and analysis of statistical findings are contributing to and strengthening the study’s validities. You should also demonstrate your ability to PRIORITIZE these validities based on the type of claim being made. I highly recommend referencing Chapter 3 of the textbook, including the “Working It Through” section on page 81, to help you with this part of the assignment.
Discussion of the validities is the “meat” of your literature review. That is, you should spend more time on this section (and it should eventually be longer) than the article summary section.
Three goals in discussing each validity:
Demonstrate to me that you understand what that particular type of validity measures;
Discuss the methods/ aspects of the study’s design that address that particular type of validity;
Be straightforward in explaining why an aspect of the study addresses that particular validity AND why that particular validity is or isn’t a priority based on the claims being made.
Remember that you can say something, anything!, about each of the validities even if they are not a priority or addressed in the design. Here are a few things that might be relevant to your study that you should include in each subsection:
remind readers of each of the variables analyzed in the study; identify each variable as either independent and dependent, or predictor and criterion variables; describe how each variable is manipulated/ measured/ operationally defined
explain why the method of measurement used contributes to the study’s construct validity
state, why construct validity is/, is not a priority for this type of claim
describe participant recruitment and the demographics of the sample
explain the population that the researcher(s) hope to generalize their findings to
share why you think the sampling method contributes to the external validity
state, why external validity is/, is not a priority for this type of claim
remind your reader of the research questions being tested and state the type of statistical analyses used to address each question
were the findings significant and well-supported by data?
describe effect sizes and other stats here (frequencies, correlation coefficients, means, p-values/significance, etc) and discuss why you think they strengthen or weaken the statistical validity of the study
state, why statistical validity is/, is not a priority for this type of claim (even if statistical validity is not a priority you should still describe the statistics used)
Did You Know? Pages 457 through 504 of your textbook provide you with a very comprehensive review of statistics? Check It Out!
describe the design used – correlational, quasi-experimental, experimental, repeated measures, pre-test/ post-test, etc.
state whether the three criteria for causality are established – 1. covariance, 2. temporal precedence, and 3. ruling out confounds (see Table 3.6 in text)
share why aspects of the design contribute (or don’t) to the study’s internal validity
state why internal validity is/is not a priority for this type of claim
Formatting Details & Writing Tips
A well-written paper is ORGANIZED! Since this may be the first APA-style research report you’ve worked on, I have uploaded a Step 2 template to assist you with required formatting. You will need Microsoft Word to use this document, which is available for free to SWC students (please see Course Orientation module if you have not yet accessed this software).
Remember to separate different ideas using paragraphs to help your reader follow along. You may have multiple paragraphs per section – this is fine!
Read your paper out loud to yourself to catch typos or awkward phrases. If you are confused by what you’ve written or what the point is that you are trying to make, then chances are, the reader is too. Scientific writing should be simple and straightforward. I recommend visiting the Writing Center to have someone look over your paper to help you (plus, extra credit!).
Please review the OWL at Purdue for APA formatting guidelines. A title page is not necessary at this stage in the game, but a References Page is required!
Did You Know? Pages 516-524 of your textbook describe formatting in APA-Style and provides five suggestions for becoming a stronger writer! Check it out!
You Must Include Citations!
Don’t forget: Any time you mention, describe, paraphrase, or quote someone else’s work (including the textbook), you need to provide an in-text citation in the body of your work and a full-text citation on the References Page. Here’s a quick example of both types of citations:
Example paragraph (with in-text citation)
A few researchers in the linguistics field have developed training programs designed to improve native speakers’ ability to understand accented speech (Derwing, Rossiter, & Munro, 2002; Thomas, 2004). Their training techniques are based on the research described above indicating that comprehension improves with exposure to non-native speech. Derwing et al. (2002) conducted their training with students preparing to be social workers, but note that other professionals who work with non-native speakers could benefit from a similar program.
References (full-text citations)
Derwing, T. M., Rossiter, M. J., & Munro, M. J. (2002). Teaching native speakers to listen to foreign-accented speech. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, 23(4), 245-259.
Thomas, H. K. (2004). Training strategies for improving listeners’ comprehension of foreign-accented speech (Doctoral dissertation). University of Colorado, Boulder.
Indenting the second line of each reference (called a hanging indent) and italics placement matters! Please review APA rules (Links to an external site.) for in-text citations and a correctly formatted References page. Better to go overboard with in-text citations than risk plagiarizing.
When first introducing an article, I’d like you to include the entire article title, all authors (Last Name, First Initial), and the publication year in parentheses. Then, all subsequent mentions of the article will follow APA Style in-text citations. For example, your summary paragraph would start…
In the article, “It’s Raining Cats and Dogs” by Warner, C., Inzunza, A., and Suess, D. (2020), blah blah blah… A repeated measures design is used to reveal that blah blah blah (Warner et al., 2020).
Every subsequent in-text citation would then utilize either of the following formats:
To end a sentence: …blah blah blah (Warner et al., 2020). No “et al.” needed if there is only one author as “et al.” can be translated to “and others.”
To use the author’s name in a sentence: Warner et al. (2020) suggest blah blah blah….
Plagiarism, the act of using another person’s words or ideas without giving credit to the author, carries serious consequences in college: the work receives a failing grade, and the plagiarizer may also receive a failing grade for the course and/or face misconduct charges (see Southwestern College Catalog). When in doubt, ask me! I am happy to talk through any use of sources with you to ensure you are citing correctly.
Avoid using direct quotes – You should only be quoting the author’s exact words if it is something so technical or specific that you couldn’t come up with any other way to put it into your own words. Because I am asking you to summarize information, most of what you will write about should be paraphrased (and not directly quoted).
All essays will be run through VeriCite plagiarism detection software upon submission. You will need to check the box acknowledging this and SWC’s academic honesty policy before submitting your paper, and I encourage you to check the results of this scan. If you see any issues, you can fix them and resubmit as long as the due date has not passed.
Social Media: Children and the Media; Pros and Cons of the Digital Age
Persichetti, E. (n.d.). Unplugging: An Evidence-Based Project to Reduce Screen Time and Improve Healthy Media Use in the Adolescent Population. doi:10.22371/07.2020.024
Mattu, A., & Luna, K. (n.d.). Speaking of Psychology: Giving Away Psychology in the Digital Age [transcript]. PsycEXTRA Dataset. doi:10.1037/e502782019-001
O’Reilly, M. (2020). Social media and adolescent mental health: The good, the bad and the ugly. Journal of Mental Health, 29(2), 200-206. doi:10.1080/09638237.2020.1714007
Yayan, E. H., Dağ, Y. S., & Düken, M. E. (2018). The effects of technology use on working young loneliness and social relationships. Perspectives in Psychiatric Care, 55(2), 194-200. doi:10.1111/ppc.12318
Domoff, S. E., Radesky, J. S., Harrison, K., Riley, H., Lumeng, J. C., & Miller, A. L. (2018). A Naturalistic Study of Child and Family Screen Media and Mobile Device Use. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 28(2), 401-410. doi:10.1007/s10826-018-1275-1
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