As you learned in this unit, there are many areas of child psychology that have been studied and continue to be studied, and there are many different methods of conducting research. For this assignment, you will focus on the experimental research method and gain some experience with designing a research study. You will design an experiment that can be used to further study a practical problem that you have identified in the area of child psychology.
I want you to:
1.identify a problem, question, or issue in child psychology that needs further study and provide background information on the problem, question, or issue
2.state a hypothesis
3.identify the independent & dependent variables that you would manipulate and measure
4.identify the groups that will be needed to test your hypothesis
5.write about any possible ethical considerations that you would need to be concerned with
6.provide a conclusion of what you think the outcome of the experiment might be.
Please be sure to mark the different parts of the assignment by using (a), (b), (c) etc. so that it is easy to identify. Additionally, you will need to cite at least one outside source when answering part (a). You must use APA-formatted in-text citations and include an APA-formatted reference page at the end of your paper.
*Here is an example of how your assignment might look*:
A. Does eating breakfast before school lead to higher academic achievement in elementary school students? [More information would be needed here, as far as background information on the problem. For example, you might include statistics on how many elementary school students eat breakfast in the morning, or information about Title I schools offering free breakfast programs in schools, or perhaps information about the connection between nutrition and cognitive functioning in childhood. In other words, you need to go beyond just stating the research question, and include relevant information from outside sources to support your research problem and explain why you’re studying it and why it’s important.]
B. I believe that eating breakfast before school leads to higher academic achievement in elementary school students. [You could expand here as well, as far as providing supporting reasons for your hypothesis.]
C. The independent variable is breakfast before school. The dependent variable is the academic achievement of the elementary students.
D. I would need to have two groups of elementary school students, preferably from the same grade level and same school. One group would be served breakfast in the morning before school, and the other group would not eat breakfast before school. I would need to gather information about the academic achievement of students in both groups as well.
E. Because my subjects are minors, I would need informed written consent from parents or guardians to allow the students to participate in my study. Not getting consent would be an ethical concern. [You would expand here to explain other ethical concerns; this is just one example. I recommend referring to the APA Code of Ethics]
F. I think that the results of my study would show that eating breakfast before school helps elementary students increase their academic achievement in school. [You would want to expand here to explain why you believe this would be the outcome of your experiment, and the implications of that outcome.]