Think in relation to a college professor, John, who claims he is a superior teacher because his Introduction to Psychology class performed better than the class taught by another teacher Drew, did on their final exam.
- Briefly describe the need to validate the result of any research study
- Is it important for a study to have high internal validity? What if Drew’s students had to take the exam during a time when construction was going on outside the window? What if there is suspicion of cheating on the part of a number of John’s students? Use the concepts of internal validity and discuss the problems with John’s claim.
- Consider the same concept for external validity. What conditions must be met inside the college to be able to have high external validity? What are the advantages of conducting experiments in a laboratory (box-like environment)?
- If John were to use this information to support his teaching strategies in a publication, would this be an example of accurate reporting of information? Why or why not?
Justify your answers with appropriate reasoning and research and comment on the postings of at least two peers.
In last week’s discussion, we mentioned Jane, a military psychologist, who was examining treatments for depression in a group of military personnel who have suffered the loss of their legs. She has only 20 men to work with.
- What are some things that Jan should consider to ensure that there is high internal validity in her study design?
- What are some things she should think about when it comes to ensuring high external validity? Is it necessary for Jane to conduct her study in the laboratory (or can it be done in the field)? How will this influence validity?