Introducing Psychology through Research

By Amanda Albon | Go to book overview

3 How psychological research
is reported

Psychologists use a variety of research methods to examine people's mental processes and behaviour. In this chapter, we look at how such research is written and where it is published. We will look at the way a piece of research is reported and then look at a real research paper. This research investigates how quickly and accurately people can recognize something that is threatening, which is an important part of how we act in a dangerous situation.


Reporting research in psychology

Having a written report of a piece of research is important for two reasons. First, it enables other people and psychologists to read about it. This is an essential part of psychology because we need to share and discuss findings in order for knowledge to advance. For example, the research may be testing a particular theory, and it is useful for other psychologists to know if there is evidence to support this theory. Second, it means that we can assess the findings. If psychologist X has done an experiment, how do we know how good the findings are unless psychologist Y can read about them, and maybe test them himself/herself? It is also important for the research to be available so that other researchers can try to replicate the study.


How do psychologists write about and publish their research?

Psychologists tend to have (at least!) one thing in common; they have learnt about the different areas of psychology, how to do research and how to write their findings as a report. In psychology, we commonly call such a report a 'research paper' or 'article'. Most psychologists will do some research as part of their job. As research is done to test ideas and find ways to improve people's lives, it would be of no use for psychologists to keep these findings to themselves. To share their findings, they write them up as a research paper and

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Introducing Psychology through Research
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • List of Boxes and Tables ix
  • Acknowledgements xi
  • Introduction 1
  • Part 1 - Introducing Psychology 3
  • 1: Introducing Psychology 5
  • 2: The Method behind the Psychology 16
  • 3: How Psychological Research Is Reported 29
  • Part 2 - The Core Areas and Research Papers 43
  • 4: Cognitive Psychology 45
  • 5: Social Psychology 56
  • 6: Developmental Psychology 70
  • 7: Biological Psychology 88
  • 8: Individual Differences 100
  • 9: Clinical Psychology 117
  • Part 3 - Reviewing Psychology 135
  • 10: The Ethics of Psychology Research 137
  • 11: Conclusion 150
  • Glossary 161
  • References 169
  • Index 179
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