This activity utilizes an online Java applet to demonstrate the limitations of human intuition and the need for empirical reasoning when studying psychological phenomena. Click here for the activity
Activities and Demonstrations
Activity: A 2×3 Factorial ANOVA calculation and interpretation: From Data Through Follow-Up Tests and Conclusions
This assignment utilizes the Teach Psych Science resource Summary steps for conducting a Factorial ANOVA: From data through follow up tests and conclusions to calculate and interpret a 2X3 factorial ANOVA data set from scratch (all hand calculations). A research scenario and data are provided. Click here for the activity.
Activity: Using SpongeBob Squarepants to Teach Observational/Archival Research and Coding of Behaviors
In this activity, students first brainstorm behaviors that might be present in a children’s TV show that could indicate aggression and cooperation. Next, they watch an episode of Spongebob Squarepants, coding specific behaviors for aggression and cooperation. They comment on the process of recording the behaviors, and whether they would recommend the show to parents.
This activity provides students an introduction to archival research by asking them to do a content analysis of personal ads. Click here for the assignment.
To help students remember potential sources of threats to internal validity, I use the acronym “MRS SMITH.” This resource provides a handout describing these threats as well as an activity where students need to identify these possible threats. Click here for a link to the activity.
This activity helps students apply ethical principles from class to a specific research project. Small groups of students serve as a mock Institutional Review Board (IRB) identifying problems and suggesting changes to make the application more ethically sound. Click here for a link to the assignment.
Activity: When Does a Joke Go Too Far? Understanding the Ethical Implications of Applying Psychology Within and Beyond the Lab
This activity helps students engage the ethical issues of vulnerable populations, minimal risk, beneficence, informed consent/minors’ assent. Small groups compare Watson’s Little Albert Experiment with a Pavlovian Prank on the TV show The Office, and a news article regarding hazings/pranks. Click here for a link to the assignment.
Using current news headline as inspiration, this activity has students develop a research idea into a working hypothesis. Click here for a link to the assignment. Photo by Ludovica Dri on Unsplash
This assignment has students visit a book retailer to critically evaluate the portrayal of the science of psychology in the popular media. Click here for a link to the assignment. Photo by Megan (Markham) Bucknall on Unsplash
Students are given a list of personality descriptions based on the 12 signs of the zodiac and have to choose which one best describes them. We then discuss how these personality descriptions are written vague enough to apply to many people. This activity is similar to the classic Forer effect (Forer, 1949). Forer used generalized
This activity involves students analyzing a famous editorial about the existence of Santa Claus in terms in terms of different ways of knowing (e.g., intuition, authority, logic, and the scientific method). Click here for a link to the assignment. Photo by krakenimages on Unsplash
This activity asks students to reconstruct an APA style research report by logically organizing individual paragraphs from a published research article. Click here for a link to the assignment.
This activity provides students with guidance as they conduct a peer review of a fellow student’s APA introduction. Click here for a link to the assignment
In this activity from The Learning Scientists’ blog, students are randomly assigned to one of three groups: recite the alphabet, count to 26, or go both by going back and forth (A-1-B-2, etc.). The dependent variable is how long it takes to complete the task. This could be done in class, but could also be
We all can (or should) agree that Taco Bell is the best fast food. When you take a trip to Taco Bell, they’ll inevitably ask if you would like any sauce. The best response: “surprise me.” The payoff? A heaping handful of sauce packets. But, are the flavors randomly distributed, or do they give you
Online tutorial gives students descriptions of research and asks them to select the correct statistic to analyze the data. There are 11 examples in total. Students respond via multiple choice questions and the tutorial provides guidance/feedback throughout. You can access the tutorial here.
Online tutorial that guides students through a research study and data analysis using regression. There are 4 modules total, with the first three being most appropriate for an introductory course. Module 3 is short and could be used as an in-class demonstration. Module 4 is more advanced. During the tutorial students will start with a
Dr. Alexis Grosofsky uses a game from The Price is Right to illustrate confidence intervals (CIs). The game can demonstrate the idea behind how a CI works. Students often find conceptual materials more difficult than computational – a concrete example helps make the concept of a confidence interval more understandable (and memorable). The video clips
This activity gives students practice evaluating statistical information by placing them in the role of a therapist who needs to purchase software for her practice. It also helps show students the value of understanding concepts from research/statistics in contexts other than doing research. This activity should take approximately 15-20 minutes. Students could work individually or
In this activity (created by Dr. Eliane Boucher), students will participate in a simplified version of the first study conducted by O’Brien and Smith (2019). In this study, participants were instructed to eat a familiar food (popcorn) in a conventional or an unconventional way (with chopsticks). Participants then rated how enjoyable the food was (note