In this section, the D.A.R.E. program was described as an incredibly popular program in schools across the United States despite the fact that research consistently suggests that this program is largely ineffective. How might one explain this discrepancy?
The scientific method is often described as self-correcting and cyclical. Briefly describe your understanding of the scientific method with regard to these concepts.
In this section, conjoined twins, Krista and Tatiana, were described as being potential participants in a case study. In what other circumstances would you think that this particular research approach would be especially helpful and why?
Presumably, reality television programs aim to provide a realistic portrayal of the behavior displayed by the characters featured in such programs. This section pointed out why this is not really the case. What changes could be made in the way that these programs are produced that would result in more honest portrayals of realistic behavior?
Which of the research methods discussed in this section would be best suited to research the effectiveness of the D.A.R.E. program in preventing the use of alcohol and other drugs? Why?
Aside from biomedical research, what other areas of research could greatly benefit by both longitudinal and archival research?
Earlier in this section, we read about research suggesting that there is a correlation between eating cereal and weight. Cereal companies that present this information in their advertisements could lead someone to believe that eating more cereal causes healthy weight. Why would they make such a claim and what arguments could you make to counter this cause-and-effect claim?
Recently a study was published in the journal, Nutrition and Cancer, which established a negative correlation between coffee consumption and breast cancer. Specifically, it was found that women consuming more than 5 cups of coffee a day were less likely to develop breast cancer than women who never consumed coffee (Lowcock, Cotterchio, Anderson, Boucher, & El-Sohemy, 2013). Imagine you see a newspaper story about this research that says, “Coffee Protects Against Cancer.” Why is this headline misleading and why would a more accurate headline draw less interest?
Sometimes, true random sampling can be very difficult to obtain. Many researchers make use of convenience samples as an alternative. For example, one popular convenience sample would involve students enrolled in Introduction to Psychology courses. What are the implications of using this sampling technique?
Peer review is an important part of publishing research findings in many scientific disciplines. This process is normally conducted anonymously; in other words, the author of the article being reviewed does not know who is reviewing the article, and the reviewers are unaware of the author’s identity. Why would this be an important part of this process?
Some argue that animal research is inherently flawed in terms of being ethical because unlike human participants, animals do not consent to be involved in research. Do you agree with this perspective? Given that animals do not consent to be involved in research projects, what sorts of extra precautions should be taken to ensure that they receive the most humane treatment possible?
At the end of the last section, you were asked to design a basic experiment to answer some question of interest. What ethical considerations should be made with the study you proposed to ensure that your experiment would conform to the scientific community’s expectations of ethical research?