Psychology Research Method Experiment Variables (Pdf)
Today in this article we will give you info about the topic Psychology Research Method Experiment Variables and you can download the pdf of this page with 1 click, go to the end of this article).
What is an Experiment?
Psychology is a science, so that means that Psychologists will often use experiments to gather data and learn more about what they are studying. But not every study is an experiment. So, let s take a look at what an experiment is and isn’t so that you can spot an experiment from the jumble of other research approaches.
In simple terms, an experiment is a research method where causal conclusions can be drawn, because an independent variable has caused a change in a dependent variable.
An experiment can tell us if A can cause B. For example, if I press the light switch, will the brightness of the room change? I control the light switch that s my independent variable and then I measure the effect it has on the dependent variable in this case the brightness of the room.
What are Independent and Dependent Variables?
There are two primary variables in a scientific experiment the independent and the dependent variable the independent variable is a variable that is controlled throughout the experiment but it is not affected by any other variable so as its name suggests it is independent of other variables time, for example, will always be an independent variable.
Let’s say you wanted to test how tall a tree would grow after eight months of treating it with a certain type of fertilizer the height of the tree may change and you can change the amount of fertilizer but that will have no effect on the eight-month period you can never speed up time or slow time down it will always be independent of anything we can do however you can change the amount of time you are measuring something the dependent variable is the variable being tested the dependent variable depends on other factors.
In our last example, we said how tall will tree grow after eight months of treating it with a certain type of fertilizer well the height of the tree is our dependent variable it is dependent on the amount of time the type of fertilizer as well as other things like the region it’s growing in temperature and so on it may be helpful to think of the independent variable and the dependent variable in the same vein as cause-and-effect if the independent variable is changed then effect will be observed in the dependent variable both independent and dependent variables may change during the duration of the experiment.
however, the experimenter is in control of changing the independent variable but not the dependent variable solely changes under the influence of the independent variable when graphing its sort of a consensus that you would always use the x-axis to plot the independent variable and the y-axis to plot the dependent variable however some people don’t and that is why it’s so important to label your axes.
Examples of Independent and Dependent Variables in Experiments
an independent variable also called the manipulated variable, has the ability to stand alone it is not changed by the other variable it is the variable you are changing or manipulating.
the dependent variable also called the responding variable depends on the other Variable it is the variable you are measuring
Examples – it is summertime you would like to know the color of the car impacts the inside temperature of the corner you find four cars of different colors and park them outside you measure the inside temperature of each car every 30 minutes for two hours the color of the car is the independent variable it will not change based on the outside temperature and you have four different colors you are changing this variable by choosing the different colors the change in the temperature inside each car is your dependent variable it may vary according to the car’s color you will be measuring this variable by taking the temperature inside the car every 30 minutes for 2 Hours.
another example – the height of a tree depends on the amount of water it receives the amount of water the tree receives is the independent period and the height of the tree is the Independent variable because it depends on the amount of water it receives and you are measuring the height of each tree.
another example – eating five servings of bananas a week reduces the blood pressure of male patients the number of bananas and then eat each week is your independent variable because it will change and the blood pressure is the dependent variable and it is what you are measuring.
when graphing the independent and dependent variables you can remember which axis they go on by using “dry mix” the D stands for the dependent variable the R stands for the responding variable and the y stands for the y-axis the M of mix stands for manipulating the I stands for independent and the X stands for x-axis hope this helps your understanding of independent variables.
In research whenever you are going to conduct research there are variables are the objects that can be directly measured with the help of some standardized instruments for example height length or weight if some researcher is going to use these variables as the independent are the dependent variables so these can be easily and directly measured with the help of some instruments for example height can be measured in terms of the feet for example length can be measured in the same way the weight can be measured in the terms of the pounds in the terms of the kilograms and there is no subjectivity attached to the measurement of these concepts or the objects.
However, there are multiple concepts that cannot be measured directly some concepts or some variables in the research are not able to be directly measured.
For example well-being, so let’s look at an example of an indicator each day the Gallup researchers poll 1000 randomly selected Americans to ask them about their well-being that is the Gallup survey basically asks about 1000 Americans to tell about their well-being to measure their well-being the Gallup asks these people to respond to the questions covering six broad areas that is
- Physical health
- Emotional health
- Work environment
- The life evaluation
- The healthy behavior
- Access is the basic necessities
So it means that well-being is a concept or it is a variable that cannot be measured directly because you cannot say about the well-being of someone whether it is good whether it is excellent whether it is average because it varies from person to person however you can measure the well-being with the help of these six indicators let’s take another example health.
Health cannot be measured directly, however, it can be measured through the use of different indicators such as –
- The body mass index
- The cholesterol levels
- The blood sugar levels
for example, if you ask somebody about your health so this cannot be measured directly because the health of one person cannot be compared to the health of another person but if you are going to use these three indicators for example the body mass index the cholesterol levels and the blood sugar levels so on the basis of these indicators now you can measure the health of the people now these indicators are these concepts which cannot be measured directly now in the position that they can be measured directly and the data can be collected through the interviews through the survey through the questionnaire etc that is you can ask about the people well-being are about their health with the help of these indicators.
Similarly, you can not directly measure
- The happiness
- The anger level
- The anxiety
But there are some indicators with the help of which you can measure these concepts so simply operationalization is the process of converting the abstract concepts into measurable observations simply it means that those concepts are those variables that cannot be measured directly and can be converted into the measurable observation with the help of the operationalization so the operationalization is simply converted conversion of the non-immeasurable concepts into the measurable one.