Archive for category Blog Entry 1

Field Research by Austin Peterson (Blog Entry 1)

We have all been apart of a research project where lots of information needs to be gathered. And many times the gathering of information is not the funnest thing in the world to do so we look for an out. And often that out comes in the form of field research. Field research is research done in natural, real life settings outside the labratory. Field Research is the fun part of research when you get to go out into real life and actually see if what your studying works!

A great example of field research comes from Pepsi in the form of the Pepsi Challenge. Pepsi set out evey where and had two cups of liquid in front of the contestant and had them drink from each cup and then tell them which one was better. The field research was being done everywhere in society to help get a random sample and see if the people liked the Pepsi they had created. Here is a link from a way old school commercial involving the Pepsi Challenge.

This commercial shows the guy being told what to do and drinking each cup and then picking his favorite. This commercial show Pepsi field research they did when promoting their product. Field Research is typically the fun part of research and Pepsi found a way to make worth filming!

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Planning Fallacy By Catherine Dodart

The planning fallacy is when we don’t calculate the amount of time it will take us to complete a task correctly.

I definitely have experienced this many, many, times. Sometimes I think that my ability on a certain task is so great that I will be able to do something in about an hours time. This has come to bite me in the butt on certain occasions. I know now that I always kind of need to give myself a little more time just in case something else becomes distracting or I get caught up in something. For example when it comes to homework, I often will procrastinate because I know that I can get it done and I don’t think it will take me very long to accomplish. However, I have found that even though I know what I am doing on the assignment, to make it presentable I end up taking more time than I originally had planned.

Everybody experiences this and sometimes it can even be on a daily basis, or else that’s just my bad planning habits:)


Hindsight Bias- Seren Bezzant

Hindsight Bias is the tendency people have to see past events as more predictable than they actually are after the fact. The idea of “I told you so” or “I knew that would happen.”

A more serious example of hindsight bias is my brother’s best friend committed suicide last year and at his funeral, my brother really felt this burden that the signs were right in front of him, but he didn’t do anything. He was feeling very guilty because he felt like he knew that the signs were so obvious now. This illustrates the hindsight bias because my brother thought only after the fact that his friend’s depression and comments were obviously suicidal. His guilt stemmed from hindsight bias. It was easy for him to think after the fact the signs were obvious, but in the moment they weren’t so obvious and telling.


Culture of Courting-Ian Hawkes

Our behaviors are influenced drastically by our situations. This is evident on small scale levels, such as being more respectful at a war memorial, shouting loudly at sports events, or acting differently on a first date, but can also be witnessed on a larger scale.

This video depicts the Wodabe men of Niger in a special ceremony performed by a number of gathered tribes. The men shown must dance in order to get the attention of a lover, who will choose from the dancing men. Though the spectacle may seem bizarre to us, for the Wodabe, it is very customary. Though we may put on cologne or perfume and a suit or a dress to appear attractive to the opposite sex, the Wodabe women have a different ideal for beauty, such as red skin and makeup on the men, good posture, flapping lips, and other factors which the video points out in more detail. If one of these men were to perform such a ceremony in the middle of BYU campus, he would be violating countless social norms, but in the situation he is in at the moment he is performing as expected. This is an excellent example of how the situations around us effect our behavior.

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Hindsight Bias by Kim Alvarado

Let’s talk about hindsight.

No, not  that  kind of hind sight but rather a phenomenon known as hindsight bias.

What the hindsight bias demonstrates is the tendency to overestimate your ability to predict the outcome of an event after you already know the conclusion and saw some of the forces that brought it about. “Common sense” is a product of the hindsight bias where assumptions are made that reflect an I-knew-it -all-along attitude. This kind of bias can be seen in everyday life where the outcome can seem like common sense once the result is known.

Examples range from the reactions of fans after a game, where they might say something like, “I knew from the first inning that Rodriguez was off his game, it’s no wonder we lost.”

Another example of hindsight bias is parodied by Natalie Tran in her Vlog (watch until 1:15):

Although it seems to skew our perception of reality, hindsight bias is an important factor of human nature. As the video shows,  people can come to very different conclusions from the very same event. For example, there are many common saying or phrases that seem to conclude two very different things as being'”common sense’; the phrases ‘birds of a feather flock together’ and ‘opposites attract’ is an example of this. What hindsight bias demonstrates is that we can’t trust in something that is ‘common sense’ as necessarily being the truth; common sense needs to be replaced with real empirical knowledge. The desire to predict outcomes based on the events of everyday life is what creates the need for both the social and physical sciences. However, seeing something as being correct in hindsight can be a faulty framework to structure our knowledge of our world around. By identifying bias in studies and studying it separatel, the field of social psychology can better critically study  human nature and more clearly understand why we do/think/feel the way we do.

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Culture and Behavior by Christine Sellers

Cultures make us who we are. We are surrounded by certain ways of living, certain expectations of dress and appearance, and specific protocols of how to behave.

culture is an organization or coming together of people who share certain beliefs, goals, characteristics, ideologies, or values. All of these factors vary across different cultures.

It is strongly believed, especially among social psychologists, that cultures shape each and every individual. Cultures incessantly influence our thoughts and behaviors towards others.

I originally had planned to attach an impressive picture I found to address this concept, but due to the fact that WordPress won’t allow me to do so at the moment, here is a less impressive quote (in my opinion… you really have to see this picture) that will have to suffice.

“Neither the life of an individual nor the history of a society can be understood without understanding both.” -C. Wright Mills

How true is that? How many times have we immediately jumped to conclusions with one  another by what they were wearing, saying, or acting like? Our outlook on one another is largely dependent on the culture in which we are encompassed. To understand an individual, you must understand their history, their culture, just like Mills said. The two go hand in hand and it is extremely important to take that into consideration when conducting research.

Cultures and values are not “transferable,” and conclusions should not be drawn in or outside of research based on one’s personal values.

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Correlational Research by Cheri Hiatt

Correlational Research is when a relationship between two variables is examined. While experiments use the manipulation of a variable to examine causation, correlations look at the already existing information of two variables that cannot be manipulated to see if there is a correlation.


Conclusion: The study explained in this clip is a correlational study conducted by Michael McCullogh at the University of Miami. In this study, the two variables examined were religion and self control. Neither religion nor self control can be manipulated, thus an experimental design is not possible and a correlation is conducted. This study examined the relationship between these two variables. Because the study is correlational, causation cannot be claimed, but further research can provide support for the type of relationship between these factors. This particular study claims that there is a positive correlation between the two where a stronger practice of religion leads to higher levels of self control.

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