Application: Research

| January 30, 2017

There are many psychological approaches to addressing social problems (e.g., clinical, developmental, cognitive, phenomenological, neurobiological, behavioral). The social psychological approach is only one among many. Given that this is a social psychology course, the final paper requires evidence of your mastery of the theories and research you’ve studied over these past 11 weeks.

Your task is, therefore, (1) to review the social psychological literature that pertains to a given social problem of your choice; (2) to identify gaps in that literature that need to be studied; and (3) to identify a potential research question that needs to be studied so that you may add to the literature and advance knowledge that can benefit society.

The Assignment (5–7 pages)

  • Select and describe a social problem in your field of interest.
  • Explain why you selected the social problem.
  • Research at least five journal articles related to the social problem.
  • Describe two gaps in the literature related to the social problem you selected in which you could develop further research and justify your selection.
  • Through a social psychology lens, develop a research question that a social psychologist might use to conduct research.

References/Readings

  • Course Text: Fiske, S. T. (2014). Social beings: Core motives in social psychology.(3rd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
    • Chapter 2, “Scientific Methods for Studying People in Interaction”
  • Course Text: The Handbook of Social Psychology
    • Chapter 1, “History of Social Psychology: Insights, Challenges and Contributions to Theory and Application”
  • Course Text: The Sage Handbook of Social Psychology
    • Chapter 2, “Questions and Comparisons: Methods of Research” 
  • Article:Sandberg, J., & Alvesson, M. (2011). Ways of constructing research questions: Gap spotting or problemization? Organization, 18(1), 23–44.
    Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
  • Website:American Psychological Association. (2010). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct. Retrieved November 30, 2011, from http://www.apa.org/ethics/code/index.aspx

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