Psychology 201: Fall 2011
Research Methods in Psychology

Instructor: Dr. R. G. Tonks  Phone: 370 - 3308
Office : Fisher 308B Email: tonks at

Office Hours: Mon / Wed - 3:00-3:30 & Thurs 4:00-4:30  

Lab assistant: Kris Andrew Phone: 370-3195
E-mail: andrew at   

Textbook: Cozby, P. C. (2009). Methods in Behavioral Research (10th Edition). Toronto: Mayfield

Course Description
This course introduces students to research techniques in psychology. The aim is to develop an understanding of the conceptual foundations of various research strategies. Topics include formulating research designs and questions, measurement of variables, data analysis, drawing valid conclusions, and writing research reports. Labs and exercises include acquiring computer skills. (T).  Prerequisites: Math 10 or assessment.    PSYC 110 and one of either PSYC 120, 130, 150 or 164.

 Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of this course students are expected to be able to

Understand the basic methodological issues pertaining to psychological research

Critique research claims and reports 

  Demonstrate practical skills of designing and conducting psychological research.

  Demonstrate competence for experimental and survey research 

  Demonstrate skills to undertake quantitative and qualitative data-analysis

  Use  SPSS for summarising, and analysing data

  Write a scientific paper for publication following  APA guidelines   

Course Organization:
The list of readings is found on the course syllabus

Each week there will be a lecture and a laboratory session where participation is expected. The lectures are aimed at providing a background and aiding in understanding the science of psychology. The lab activities are designed to provide you with hands-on experience of conducting psychological research and learning SPSS for data analysis.


Exams: 50%
There will be a Midterm and Final Exam (25% each). These exams will have about 50 multiple-choice questions and 2-4 short essay questions covering material from the textbook readings, lectures, and lab activities. The exams are not cumulative but the Final Exam will have 2-4 critical thinking questions assessing your comprehensive understanding of the course including  SPSS.

Lab Assignments & Participation: 25%
Each week activities will be done to help you apply the research methods and knowledge of their use to test through practical experiences (20%). Your participation in classroom and laboratory discussions, including student presentations, is worth 5%.

Group Projects: 25%:

This will be your own research project which you will design, conduct, organise and interpret the data, write up a report and give a brief presentation.

The Grading will be done following Camosun Standards as seen below:
A+ 90 - 100 B 73-76 D 50 - 59
A 85- 89 B- 70 -72 F 0 - 49
A- 80-84 C+ 65 - 69 I = Incomplete*
B+ 77-79 C 60 - 64  
*(If the missing work is not completed within 6 weeks from the semester end, the grade will become F).

There are a variety of services available for students to assist them throughout their learning. This information is available in the College calendar, at Student Services or the College web site at

There is a Student Conduct Policy which includes plagiarism. It is the student’s responsibility to become familiar with the content of this policy. The policy is available in each School Administration Office, at Student Services and on the College web site in the Policy Section.