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An important part of research in psychology is being able to develop ideas (hypotheses) that are theory driven, and to design empirical studies to test these ideas. Therefore, each of you will write an 10-12 page APA-Style paper in which you a) research a topic of interest to you, b) develop a hypothesis, c) design a study to test your hypothesis, and d) determine the best way to analyze the data. This paper will give you the opportunity to apply the concepts you’ve learned this semester to a topic of your choosing.

Your paper must include the following sections (all in APA style):

-          Title page

-          Abstract

-          Introduction (Describe what your topic or research question is and why it’s worth investigating; summarize and integrate existing literature on this topic; describe what is missing from this literature and how your proposed study will build upon these earlier studies; present your hypothesis which includes the predicted relationship between one or more independent variable(s) and one or more dependent variable(s).

-          Method Section (with participants, procedure, and measures subheadings; NOTE: you will not really be conducting the study, but you will write and discuss it as if you are planning to complete it; the participants subsection, for example, will include the sample you plan to use in your study).

-          Results (describe the type of data you would collect and the analysis that is most relevant for this type of data)

-          Discussion (the predicted outcome, an explanation of what the predicted outcome might mean in light of existing research, and limitations/future directions and  implications of the proposed study)

-          References

-          Any tables or figures (not required)

In general, the goal of the paper is for each of you to demonstrate:

-          You can develop a hypothesis that is testable and falsifiable

-          You are able to state what you PREDICT and WHY

-          You are able to select articles that support your hypothesis

-          You can integrate different theories (many of your hypotheses will have/need support from various areas of psychology- that’s okay, it means you are doing something new and interesting!)

-          That you can identify an appropriate sample for your testing your hypothesis

-          You are able to select the best design to test your hypothesis

-          You are able to describe an analysis strategy to examine your data

-          You use APA style

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