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Your goal is to find three original research articles using the PsycArticles database and summarize and critique the articles. You are welcome to choose any topic related to psychology, but all three articles must be related to that one topic (e.g., “short term memory” or “cognitive dissonance” or “language development”, and your articles must be true research articles. If you are unsure of a topic, please email me! Note that not all articles in PsycArticles are original research articles! How will you know how to use PsycArticles? See links in the Written Assignment folder for a video lecture on empirical research articles as well as additional videos to help you search the PsycArticles Database. How will you know if it is a true academic research article? First, it will come from a journal and not a magazine (you can access these journals from PsycArticles). Second, it will contain sections specific sections such as an Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, and References section. See my video on empirical research articles to find out more

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The written assignment for this class and should be about 7-8 pages in length, double spaced, 12 point Ariel or Times New Roman font, 1 inch margins all around. Be sure to include the following 7 components in your paper. Note that only the citations need to be in APA format. The rest of your paper (the summary, the synthesis, and the evaluation) does not need to be in APA format. However, please use proper grammar, spelling, and paragraph formation in your paper. Be sure to include the following 7 components in your paper. 1) The title of your paper should be the topic you chose (e.g., “persuasion” or “multiple intelligence theory” or “procrastination”) 2) Summary of your first article (about 1.5 pages long). Please use paragraphs when writing your summary – do not write the summary as one long paragraph. The summaries should provide some of the important details in the study, and show your knowledge of the different types of information that is provided in the four sections of all empirical research articles: a) What information was presented in the INTRODUCTION section that explains previous research and the motivation of the present study? What was the hypothesis for the study (if included)? b) What were the METHODS of the study? Even if you don’t understand some of them, try your best to summarize what they DID in the study in your own words. c) What were the RESULTS? It’s ok not to discuss the statistics, but just summarize whether there were effects or differences between groups found. d) What information was presented in the DISCUISSION section? Did the results support the hypothesis (if included)? What can be inferred about the topic from the study? What were limitations in the conclusions that the authors discussed. 3) Summary of your second article. (1.5 pages) 4) Summary of the third article. (1.5 pages) 5) A synthesis of the articles you read (at least 2/3 page). This section should be written in essay form and should consider the findings and implications of the articles you read. Be specific and explain your thoughts. Examples of synthesizing are: – Compare and contrast the research methods and results of your articles. These articles were each done on the same topic, and yet they are probably different. What did you learn from that? What does that make you think about? – If the topic is also found in your text, how were these findings related to or different from the research found in your text? – Why are these studies important? What is the significance of them? 6) An evaluation of the research you read (at least 2/3 page). This section should be written in essay form and should evaluate and critique the research methods of the articles you read. Be specific and explain your thoughts. Examples of evaluating are: – What specifically did you think was good or bad about the research method used (advantages and disadvantages of doing a survey vs. correlational design vs. experimental design, etc.)? – How do you think the research could have been done differently? Use terminology, research, or ideas learned in the class. – Scientific research is cumulative – new studies bring new findings, but they also evoke new questions. What new questions do these studies suggest and how would you suggest studying the new questions? What research method would you use? How would you design a new study? 7) Reference list in APA (American Psychological Association Manual) style. Research papers in psychology uses this manual to format the paper and the reference section. The last page will have a list of 3 citations in alphabetical order: For each of the 3 articles you read, list the author names, year, article title, journal name, volume number, and page numbers of the article. The 3 citations need to be in APA format (hanging indent, correct order, journal name italicized, etc.). See the Written Assignments folder for links for directions for APA style citations.


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