Overview of this Assessment
The major assignment for HPS301/781 casts you into the role of a Research Psychologist. You will be required to analyse some data obtained from a research study and to write a report based on your findings. The assignment must be presented as a formal laboratory report (see example lab report as a writing guide) and should contain an abstract, introduction, method, results, discussion, and reference sections. Given that this is a Research Methods unit, the assessment of your report will focus primarily on the results and discussion sections and this is reflected in the weighting of marks.
Thus, the primary aims of this assignment are to:
Develop your skills in using appropriate statistical techniques to test a specific research question,
Broaden your understanding of research designs,
Develop your report writing skills; particularly the ability to report statistical results, the ability to interpret statistical results in the context of past research, and to integrate previous work into a structured argument.
You will be provided with a data set, information about the study methods, and specific research questions.
Your task will be to analyse the data and then write a report on the results. Thus, you will need to draw on the skills you have been developing over the course of the trimester. You can consult the Seminar Activity Instructions documents on CloudDeakin for help with analysing the data and interpreting your output. Furthermore, a Blackboard Collaborate session (date to be advised in a News post) will be scheduled closer to the due date for any student queries regarding the assignment.
The main focus of the assessment is on your ability to understand, analyse and interpret the appropriate statistical analyses to test the hypotheses and to report the results correctly. Overall, your ability to write a psychology laboratory report (following APA conventions) as a whole will be assessed. The necessary readings for AT1 can be found in the Lab Report section of the HPS301/781 CloudDeakin site. There is no need to go beyond these readings.
8pm, Thursday 18th April 2019, submission via CloudDeakin.
The assignment is to be submitted as a word document or pdf (.docx OR .pdf), as well as your syntax file (.sps
For this task you must submit a lab report that includes the sections outlined below. The word limit is 2,000 words (excluding your Abstract, Reference list, and any Appendices) with a 10% leeway. HPS781 students please note that you have an additional 500 words for your reflection piece (see the last section of these instructions).
Please ensure that you submit your work as a typed/word processed document, using a standard font (Times-New Roman) and suitable font size (12 pt) with double-line spacing. Your document should be formatted with 2.5 cm margins on each side. Please make sure that you spell-check AND carefully proofread your work prior to submission. For guidance with APA formatting, see the example lab report referred to above.
This assignment is worth 40% of the total grade for this unit.
Unit Learning Outcomes
The assignment assesses (ULO2), as students will need to autonomously conduct appropriate statistical analyses given specific research questions. As this assignment is a lab report, students will be required to defend conclusions drawn from obtained results (in the Discussion section) (ULO3). Finally, as a lab report, students will be expected to adhere to APA style guidelines (ULO4)
Background to the study
Alcohol use is a significant problem in Australia with problematic use being linked to many negative outcomes. Public health messaging has employed different types of messaging frames (e.g., loss or gain frames) in order to help drinkers stay within low-risk drinking levels. Fear based messaging, and specifically disgust-based messaging has shown to be particularly effective in reducing intentions around future alcohol use (Collymore & McDermott, 2016).
However, it is worth considering that each study has a chance of returning a false positive. Increasingly researchers in psychology are concerned that our findings might not be replicable, due to random chance, publication bias, or “researcher degrees of freedom”, and their concerns are justified (Open science collaboration, 2015). This has led to some researchers calling for an increase in the number of “replication-extension” studies, where an effect of interest is replicated (to establish its validity) before an investigation of a secondary question, such as a test for interactions or for possible explanations of an effect (Bonett, 2012).
In this study, you will do exactly that, retesting the effects described by Collymore and McDermott (2016) and then extending this by investigating the role of key individual difference factors including motivations for not drinking (Bekman et al., 2011), age and gender, in future drinking intentions.
In doing this your paper will not only need to use the literature to argue for the merits of this study, but also the importance of replication within your introduction in particular (see the replication-extension studies discussion for some background).
Do different message frames influence future alcohol consumption intentions?
Do age, gender and non-drinking motives predict future alcohol consumption intentions?