Visual Search Experiment in Psychology

Goes on separate page. Length 120-150 words. Short paragraph (120 to 150 or fewer words) describing the four major sections of your article (Introduction, Method, Results, Discussion).

General: The introduction is the first page of full text following the abstract. The function of the introduction is obvious, so it is not labeled “Introduction”. Instead, the full title of your paper is the title of this section.

First Paragraphs: The introduction is to inform the reader of the specific research question. In writing the introduction, consider: What is the question being studied? What psychological theory supports the study? The beginning of the introduction should let the reader know your general topic, and why it is important. You may want to start with a real-life example that illustrates the issue. It should be easy to understand. This will get the reader involved and interested. Keep in mind that scientific writing avoids speaking directly to the reader (e.g., “Have you ever been in a situation…..”). This is too informal. At the end of the opening paragraphs, make sure to include a clear goal statement (e.g., “The purpose of this study is to investigate the relation ….”).

Previous Literature: After the initial paragraphs, discuss previous literature. You do not need to include an exhaustive historical review. Only cite studies that are in some way pertinent to your research question. If you cite a study, you have to list it in the References section! In summarizing earlier studies, avoid nonessential details. Emphasize major conclusions and findings. Try to give the reader a general understanding of the study, but your main goal is to convey the significance of the study. Keep in mind what we went over in class. [Use Scholar Google and/or Psychinfo with keywords such as ’visual search’ to find articles]

Proposed Study & Hypothesis: Next, you will move from talking about what others have done to what we have done in our experiment. The general introduction and review of previous work should motivate your proposal. The reader should be at a place where they can understand the proposal. Describe what you expect to find. This is where you state your hypothesis. After you stated your hypothesis, include a clear prediction about how your results should pan out. You already know the results, so it should be easy to formulate a prediction.

Additional Suggestions: Note that in order to state your hypothesis, you must have determined the variables (IV and DV) that you were using. If necessary, include operational definitions of your variables. So, it is a good idea to answer the following questions before you begin writing the introduction: What variable was manipulated by the experimenter? What results do I expect to find? Why do I expect them? Is there anything in the previous literature that helps me answer these questions? How can I use the previous literature to help motivate my question? Is my project an experiment or a quasi-experiment?

• find at least 7 references (no books or book chapters allowed, all references have to be peer-reviewed articles)

•The method section is where you tell the reader what you did to test your hypothesis. Your description should have enough detail so that other researchers could replicate your study.

•Participants: You need to describe who your participants were and why they participated. For experiments completed in this class, it will suffice to say that “12 psychology students participated as part of a class demonstration.”

•Materials: Here you describe unique materials or equipment

•Design: Here you explain what variables were included in the experiment and how they were used (Typically you don’t just name them).
Remember – the Independent Variable is manipulated by the experimenter and we hope that it has an effect on the Dependent Variable that we measured. Mention if your IV was within-subjects or between-subjects.

•Procedure: Here you tell the reader what (exactly) you did. You need to describe the task of the participant, and how different conditions differed from one another. However, DO NOT include information that is irrelevant to the study. (For example, you do not need to mention turning on the computer or entering passwords, etc.) My classmates and I for a total of 19 were asked to partake in an experiment where we were instructed to see how quickly we could identify the upright orange colored T, among blue colored T’s and upside down orange colored T’s. There was 50 trials, but not all of them contained an upright T. Independent variable:
number of distractors (5, 10, 15, 20)

Dependent variable:
reaction time
Graph submitted in the materials upload

5. REFERENCES (start on separate page)

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