Experimental Hypothesis: There will be a significant difference in the number of words recalled by subjects who studied the related word lists and those who studied the unrelated word lists. Null Hypothesis: There will be no significant difference in the number of words recalled from the related and unrelated lists; any difference will be due to chance Methodology Subjects The group of people of interest for this study are teenagers, mainly 16-18 year olds. Most of the participants were family and friends.
Twenty people took part in the study – 10 males and 10 females and the mean age of all the participants was 17 years of age. To recruit the participants for the 2 conditions opportunity sampling was used as it was convenient. It consists of taking the sample from people who are available at the time the study is carried out and fit the criteria the experimenter is looking for. Design For the study it will be conducted as a laboratory experiment, using an independent measures design. The independent variable in the experiment is the related and unrelated lists (see appendix 2).
One list of words is related; in this case the words are related to clothes, will be given to the experimental group. The other list contains completely unrelated words with no connection, which will be given to the control group. The dependant variable in the experiment will be the subject’s memory of the words, operationalized as the number of words remembered correctly. Materials / apparatus 40 common nouns were used as the learning material and a set of standardized instructions to give the participants (see appendix 5). A stop clock was used to time the participants.
It was decided that this apparatus should be used because it filled the necessary criteria, such as complete homogeneity for easy replication. Procedure A potential participant would be approached and asked whether they would like to take part in the experiment. The experimenter would have a set of standardized instructions that he/she would have to follow. Subjects were randomly assigned to a group. In the experimental condition, the participant would be shown the related word lists but in the control condition another participant would be shown the unrelated word list.
The experimenter would show the test subject the list of related or unrelated words, making sure that the participant had 3 minutes to read and remember each word properly. The experimenter would then put the words out of view and ask the participant to write down as many words as they can remember on a separate piece of paper. The participants had 2 minutes to do this. After the experiment is over the participant would be debriefed and told the actual aim of the experiment (see appendix 4). No ethics arose during this study.
I gained full consent from the participants as it would be wrong to deceive them. None of the participants were harmed during the experiment. The subjects were not lied to. The subjects were allowed to withdraw at any time although none of them did this. They were debriefed at the end of the experiment and told the actual aim of the experiment. All the variables were controlled to make it fair. The experimenter used a stop clock to make sure that every participant had the same amount of time. A set of standardised procedures and instructions were carried out the same every time.