Over the next few days, your task is to pay attention to your behavior and the behavior of others around you. You are looking for situations/interactions that you can discuss/interpret/analyze using knowledge about behavior you have acquired in this course (i.e., psychological terminology, principles, concepts, and/or theories). Focus on observations that you can link to the course content for any of the topics we have covered thus far in the course.
NOTE: We recognize that COVID-19 may place some limitations on your ability to make behavioral observations. Keep in mind that your observations could be of people with whom you live, characters on a TV show or movie, or people you observe from a far (i.e., children playing in their front yard). You could even use your own behavior for one of your observations, though be aware that it is often difficult to be an objective observer of our own behavior.
Two complete this assignment, you will make TWO independent observations. These behavioral observations will be referred to as your “case studies.” After completing your observations, you will construct a “case study write-up” for each that includes the following information:
1) Date of the behavioral observation (i.e., case study).
2) Location of the case study.
3) Brief Case Description. This description should include any and all details needed to provide a complete
description of the event/observation for someone who did not witness it first-hand. Avoid specific personal identifying details, such as names, to protect the privacy of the people you observe, but be sure to provide a comprehensive description of the event itself and the behavior of the persons involved.
4) Psychological Application. This application will be provided by you (the social scientist). In doing so, you will
seek to analyze/explain/interpret the behavior(s) you observed using what you have learned in this course. You will connect your observations to relevant course material (i.e., a specific psychological concept, principle, or theory). Be sure to discuss your case study using appropriate psychological terminology. You must also incorporate information from ONE academic source into your analysis (this CANNOT be your textbook). Be sure to cite that source both in text and in a Reference list at the end of your assignment using APA editorial style. You should avoid internet sources, with the exception of electronic versions of articles from peer-reviewed journals.
6) Self-Reflection: Take a moment to reflect on how the knowledge you have gained in this class has affected
your ability to think carefully about, and better understand, human behavior. Do you think your interpretation of your observation would have been different if you had not taken this class? If so, in what ways? Did you focus on different aspects of behavior when trying to explain it? Did you focus on different factors/variables when trying to explain the behavior? What have you learned from this exercise about casual, everyday explanations of behavior and those provided by you now (i.e., someone who knows a thing or two about the scientific study of behavior!)?
7) Reference list. Provide a complete reference entry for any source cited in your psychological application
discussion. You are encouraged to use the APA resources posted in Blackboard for help with APA
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