The scientific research method is an approach that practitioners of psychology are interested in for assessing, measuring, and predicting behavior. It is the process of appropriately framing and properly answering questions. It is used by psychologists and those engaged in other scientific disciplines, to come to an understanding about the world.
Scientific Nature of Psychology
• Psychology is a science
• Science: An approach using the scientific method for the observation, description, understanding, and prediction of any phenomenon.
• Scientific method: The procedure employing a systematic, pre defined, series of steps for attaining optimal efficiency, accuracy, and objectivity in investigating the problem of interest
• Systematic: it follows a specified system, an organized ways of collecting and tabulating information.
• Pre defined series of steps: certain steps following a specific sequence that is not to be altered; disruption of the sequence will ruin the essence of the approach
• Objectivity: It is unbiased; the researcher’s likes and dislikes do not interfere with the
Steps of Scientific Method
1. Identifying the research problem
The most important step while conducting research is identify and specify the area of interest in hich one is going to conduct a research. The research problem can be identified in many ways, including personal interest, brainstorming, scientific developments, knowledge etc.
2. Review of the related literature
Searching the research findings in relation with the research one is going to conduct, in order to see how others approached the same or similar issues. Also, it can give some idea as to what would be the probable outcome of one’s research.
3. Formulation of hypotheses
A hypothesis is a speculative statement about the relationship between two or more variables. By reviewing the related literature, one is able to formulate the hypotheses pertaining to the variables of interest. Reviewing the related research articles helps one formulate various hypotheses.
4. Designing and conducting the research
After reviewing the related literature and making hypotheses, the research is conducted by using different strategies such as Questionnaires, mail interviews, telephonic interviews, face to face interviews etc. A variety of research designs is available to the researchers, who can choose the one that best suits their study.
5. Analysis of data
After collecting information, the data will be tabulated with the help of statistical methods and computation in order to see whether the finding prove or disprove the hypotheses.
6. Drawing conclusions
Conclusions are drawn after the statistical analysis of data. On the basis of this, a decision is made about the rejection or acceptance of the hypothesis in Research methods in Psychology