Research Proposal: The Scientific Method

723 Words3 Pages
The scientific method is an approach used by psychologists and researchers who want to have a systematic and objective way of recording and understanding behaviour and any other topic that may be of interest. It is comprised of four main steps that will be discussed below, along with my example research situation. Before a researcher can dive into doing research, s/he must identify a question of interest. The researcher might make an observation of some strange phenomena or even everyday behaviour that begs for an explanation. It might be something they saw, were told or read from previous literature or findings. In my example case, a researcher passing a primary school playground makes an observation that between the children, the boys…show more content…
With the operational definition in hand, the researcher must now select an appropriate research method. There are multiple research methods that the researcher can choose from under the umbrella of descriptive research and there is also experimental research. For my example, the researcher will use both types of research. Under descriptive research, they will use archival research to find existing data from police records to see a list of juvenile crime. They will use naturalistic observation, with permission of the school, to simply record the natural behaviour of the boys in the playground without the children knowing that they are being observed, so that their behaviour is authentic and representative of how they usually behave. The researcher could conduct surveys to send to a representative sample of the parents from multiple schools and ask questions in relation to, how many boys there are in the household, what ages, the boys behaviour etc. The researcher must keep in mind that the surveys may lose a certain percentage of validity if the parents do not answer the questions truthfully. The researcher could also do correlational research to find out whether there is a positive correlation between having more boys in the household means more aggressive behaviour. Correlational research examines the relationship between two variables to determine whether they are correlated. The researcher can even conduct an experiment, where the researcher could place a mix of children (subjects) in a controlled situation where they can be observed. The researcher would change a variable to see how the change would affect the children (subjects). In this case, the researcher could test whether putting more boys in a room to play together, would make them exhibit more aggressive behaviour. The researcher could even create an artificial event of some sort, like adding an interesting desirable toy in the room, to see how
Open Document