Very often we read or see reports telling us about the findings of a recent study. Usually, these reports are based on scientific studies conducted with a specific outcome in mind. Although literally thousands of research studies are done each year, we most frequently hear about those relating to our physical and psychological well-being. However, in order for these studies to be valued and believed, they must be scientifically rigorous. If they are not, then how can we believe the findings? If the findings were incorrectly obtained it could have serious consequences for those who might apply them.
Let’s say, for example, that a study was conducted to investigate the possible connection between caffeine consumption and level of depression. It is found that the consumption of six cups of coffee leads to reduced depression. The recommendation from this study might be to increase caffeine consumption. However, what would you think if you found out that only three participants took part in the study? What if the participants were not given a scientific means for measuring depression, but were merely asked to report? Based on this new information, how sure are you that drinking six cups of coffee is going to reduce your level of depression? Therefore, it is crucial that those working and studying in the field of psychology thoroughly understand the effectiveness of differing research methods.
Your organisation does not have access to this article.
Sign up today to give your students the edge they need to achieve their best grades with subject expertiseSubscribe