1. How to write an introduction for your IA


2. Approaching Essay Writing Skills In IB Psychology.

Rationale.
In order to develop your essay writing skills, you will be given a short homework every unit. Each homework will ask you to construct (build) a section of an essay. As the homeworks are completed, you will eventually have produced a sample essay (and an essay plan) that you can use later for revision.
Over the course of our course, we will repeat this process. By the end of the two years, you will have built up a library of sample essays and essay plans that will supplement your notes. You will also have refined and developed your essay writing skills, an essential skill in IB Psychology.

Task.
Write an introduction (only) for the following question:

Describe and evaluate applications and relevant theories in cognitive psychology.

Your work will be assessed on style, grammar and content as well as the above four criteria.
Introduction - 1 to 5pts
A good introduction will:
1. Use the terms of the question.
2. Set the scene for the rest of the essay by identifying which theories, concepts, areas, research and/or applications will be discussed.
3. Be three to four sentences in length.
4. Use simple sentences.

The introduction provides the background and justification for the research study. At the Standard Level (SL), this section includes the study that is being replicated and the aim of the study at hand. Use this section to justify the prediction you are making in your research aim/hypothesis. By reviewing related research studies, you can explain how a previous study relates to your own study and explain the reason behind your predictions. This section should move from broad concepts to more specific studies that are directly related to the current study. This section should end in a clearly identified aim. The introduction should follow the order below.

  • A general introduction to the psychological subject area under investigation.
What to Include: Explain the specific topic you are researching. Give specific definitions, and where needed, contrast it with opposing concepts. Give background for the topic as it was introduced in psychology. Where has it been studied before? Etc. Also, it may be necessary to cite a source here, which I can give you if you are unsure which one to use. It is NOT necessary here to explain why you are studying this topic.

  • A summary of the key theories and research studies. This must include proper references (at LEAST ONE for SL candidates).
What to Include: Introduce the study/experiment you are replicating. Explain the hypothesis being tested. Summarize the method and results. Be specific enough so that a clear connection can be seen between this experiment and your replication. ALSO, you MUST cite your study using APA format. The citation can be done at the beginning of your explanation (like #1 below) or at the end of a paragraph (like #2). Any time you start or end a paragraph it must begin or end with a citation.
Citation Examples: 1) Stanley Milgram (1963) designed a large electrical machine with 30 toggle switches labeled with voltage levels starting at 30 volts and increasing by 15-volt intervals up to 450 volts; 2) It was noted during the experiment that 26 of the 40 subjects, or 65%, followed the experimenter’s orders and gave the full shock (Milgram, 1963).
Citations will be in APA format.

  • A rationale or justification for the study (why are you replicating this study?)
What to Include: Explain specifically why you chose this topic AND why you chose to replicate this study. (And, please, stay away from petty explanations like, “I think this is cool.” Or “It was the only one I could find.”) For your reasoning, you can explain your interest in the topic or its importance to the study of behavior in general. For the study, you can explain how the structure of the study lends itself to being easily replicatable in our setting, and so forth.

  • The aim of your experiment (simplified hypothesis)
What to Include: Give a detailed sentence or two about what is being investigated and what is expected. This is not a formalized hypothesis, though I will not restrict you from using that format.
Example: The aim of this study is to investigate how the introduction of new information during questioning of an event can alter one’s recall of that event.

What to Include: Explain the specific topic you are researching. Give specific definitions, and where needed, contrast it with opposing concepts. Give background for the topic as it was introduced in psychology. Where has it been studied before? Etc. Also, it may be necessary to cite a source here, which I can give you if you are unsure which one to use. It is NOT necessary here to explain why you are studying this topic.


Application - 1 to 5pts
Research or Theory - 1to 5pts
Evaluation of research or theory - 1 to 5pts


3. IA Study Topics


A. Eyewitness testimony

Chambers, K.L., & Zaragoza, M.S. (2001). Intended and Unintended effects of explicit warnings on eyewitness suggestibility: Evidence from source identification tests. Memory and Cognition, 29(8), 1120-1129.
Loftus, E.F. (1975). Leading questions and the eyewitness report. Cognitive Psychology, 7, 550-572.

B. Mozart Effect

Rauscher, F.H., & Ky, K.N., (1993). Music and spatial task performance. Nature, 365, 611.

C. Memory

Stroop, J.R. (1935). Studies of interference in serial verbal reactions. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 18, 643-662.
Macleod, C.M. (1991). Half a century of research on the Stroop effect: An integrative review. Psychological Bulletin, 109(2), 163-203.g
Gao, Q., Chen, Z., & Russell, P. (2007). Working memory load and the Stroop interference effect. New Zealand Journal of Psychology, 36(3), 146-153.
Craik, F. I. M., & Tulving, E. (1975). Depth of processing and the retention of words in episodic memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 104(3), 268-294.
Baddeley, A.D. (1966). Short-term memory for word sequences as a function of acoustic, semantic, and formal similarity. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 18, 362-365.
Sperling, G., & Speelman, R.G. (1970). Acoustic similarity and auditory short-term memory: Experiments and a model. In D.A. Norman (Ed.), Models of human memory (pp. 151-202). New York: Academic Press.
Roediger, H.L. (1990). Implicit memory. American Psychologist, 45(9), 1043-1056.
Kahana, M.J., & Howard, M.W. (2005). Spacing and lag effects in free recall of pure lists. Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 12(1), 159-164.

D. Attention

Treisman, A., Viera, A., & Hayes, A. (1992). Automaticity and preattentive processing. The American Journal of Psychology, 105(2), 341-362.
Cavanagh, P., Arguin, M., & Treisman, A. (1990). Effects of surface medium on visual search for orientation and size features. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 16(3), 479-491.
Mulligan, N.W., & Hartman, M. (1996). Divided attention and indirect memory tests. Memory & Cognition, 24(4), 453-465.

E. Perception

Goolsby, B.A., & Suzuki, S. (2000). Understanding priming of color-singleton search: Roles of attention at encoding and "retrieval." Perception & Psychophysics, 63(6), 929-944.
Wertheimer, Max. (1938). Laws of organization in perceptual forms.In W. Ellis, W (Ed. & Trans.), A source book of Gestalt psychology (pp. 71-88). London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. (Original work published in 1923 as Untersuchungen zur Lehre von der Gestalt II, in Psycologische Forschung, 4, 301-350.)

F. Problem Solving

Huitt, W. (1992). Problem solving and decision making: Consideration of individual differences using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Journal of Psychological Type, 24, 33-44.

G. Mental Imagery

Finke, R.A.., Pinker, S., & Farah, M.J. (1989). Reinterpreting visual patterns in mental imagery.Cognitive Science, 13(3), 252-257.

H. **Classics in the History of Psychology**


4. An example - IA