Module 02 General Psychology Credit by Assessment The scientific method allows us to pose questions, test questions, and analyze results. Through observation and research we begin to understand the world around us. Consider research you have read about or been a part of and analyze the following in one page: Was the Scientific method followed? How? What pieces were or were not part of it? (Randomization, study type, placebos, etc.) Purchase the answer to view it
The Scientific Method is a systematic approach used in research to discover and analyze phenomena in the natural world. It provides a framework for formulating and answering research questions, collecting and analyzing data, and drawing conclusions based on evidence. In this analysis, I will consider a research study and evaluate whether the scientific method was followed, discussing the inclusion or exclusion of specific components such as randomization, study type, and placebos.
The study I will refer to is a randomized controlled trial investigating the effectiveness of a new medication for treating depression.
The first step of the scientific method is to formulate a research question. In this case, the research question may be: “Does the new medication reduce the symptoms of depression in patients compared to a control group?” This question is well-defined and specific, allowing for a clear hypothesis to be formulated.
The next step is to design the study. Randomization is a crucial component of the scientific method as it helps to minimize bias and establish a cause-and-effect relationship between variables. Randomization involves assigning participants to different groups (e.g., experimental group receiving the new medication and control group receiving a placebo) randomly, ensuring that each participant has an equal chance of being assigned to any group. By randomly assigning participants, researchers can control for potential confounding variables that may influence the results.
In our study, it is important to determine whether randomization was employed. If participants were randomly assigned to the experimental and control groups, then we can conclude that this aspect of the scientific method was followed. However, if participants were selected based on convenience or some other non-random method, the study design would be considered flawed and less reliable.
Another component of the scientific method is the selection of an appropriate study type. Different types of research designs, such as observational studies and experimental studies, have unique strengths and weaknesses. Experimental studies, particularly randomized controlled trials, are often referred to as the gold standard in research as they allow for the establishment of cause-and-effect relationships through the manipulation of variables.
In our example, a randomized controlled trial design would be the most appropriate study type for evaluating the effectiveness of the new medication. This design involves randomly assigning participants to either the experimental group (receiving the new medication) or the control group (receiving a placebo). By comparing the outcomes of these groups, researchers can determine whether the medication is effective in reducing depression symptoms.
The use of placebos is another factor to consider in evaluating the adherence to scientific method principles. A placebo is a substance that has no therapeutic effect but is administered to a control group to account for the psychological and physiological effects associated with receiving treatment. In this study, if the control group received a placebo instead of the new medication, this would indicate that placebos were included as part of the research design.
Placebos help to control for the placebo effect, a phenomena where participants may experience improvements simply because they believe they are receiving a treatment. By comparing the outcomes of the experimental and control groups, researchers can determine whether the observed effects are due to the medication itself or simply the result of expectations and beliefs.
In conclusion, in order to determine whether the scientific method was followed in a research study, we need to evaluate several components. These include randomization, study type, and the use of placebos. In the case of a study investigating the effectiveness of a new medication for depression, the scientific method would be followed if the study involved random assignment of participants to different groups (experimental and control), used a randomized controlled trial design, and included the administration of placebos to the control group. These elements are crucial for maximizing internal validity and drawing accurate conclusions about the relationship between the new medication and reduction in depression symptoms.