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COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY with research methods 1 (psy1017)

COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY with research methods 1 (psy1017)

Overview

 

You will prepare a poster to report the experiment we did in Cognitive Psychology this semester. In terms of content, the poster is very similar to a research report or a manuscript for submission to a journal.  The difference is that the poster is much more concise (e.g., bullet points rather than prose).  Except for the abstract, the poster should have all of the sections that a research report or submitted manuscript would have.

 

This poster is an individual assignment, which will constitute 50% of the module mark.

 

Please make the poster in PowerPoint or a similar program, saving it as a pdf.  It should be landscape (wide) format, A4 size, with font that can be read without magnification on a regular computer monitor.  It should be readable without magnification.  As a guide, use font size at least 13 point on an A4 document.  Fewer words is usually better!  We would like to have

 

You will turn in both the poster itself (as a pdf) and a cover sheet (as a Word document) to SurreyLearn.

 

Content of the Poster

The content of the poster should include:

  • Title – The title should summarize the study and findings.
  • Author URN – List your student URN number, after the title, and also include your academic affiliation (i.e. School of Psychology, University of Surrey)
  • Introduction – Here you should say what the research is about, clearly define the research question(s), as well as the rationale for the study. Relevant background information provides a context for the study and reports important trends and findings from previous research. Explicitly state the hypotheses that you tested.
  • Methods - Experimental methods are described in a concise paragraph or through an original representation that describes the flow and proper sequence of important aspects of the experimental protocol. This may be represented as a model, flowchart, or series of ordered bullet points. The methods section clearly and concisely answers the question, “what did the researchers do?”.  What were the dependent variables (what the researchers manipulated) and what were the independent variables (what did they measure)?  Photographs and/or drawings should be used to illustrate relevant aspects of the experimental methods. Here think about what is important for a reader to understand the main ideas and goals of the research that was conducted (there is not enough space to put all the information described in the scientific paper, so think about what is essential and what is not).
  • Results – Describe the most important findings in the research conducted in the empirical example. The results section should include helpful figures to convey quantitative results in a meaningful way, incorporating some derpiction of uncertainty (e.g., a bar/column chart with 95% confidence intervals). Make sure that the figures are well presented (labelled axes and etc.) and that the text is large enough to be seen without magnification on a computer screen. It usually works better to use Excel or another program to make posters, than SPSS. Readers are far more likely to stop at a poster in a scientific meeting if there are colourful and contain high quality images. 
  • Discussion – What have we learned?  What are the important questions for future work?  Could we improve things in particular ways, in future work?
  • References – References are cited within the body of the text and a complete bibliography is presented that is correctly formatted according to APA style.

 

Additional tips:

  • Because of the concise format, be brief and straightforward. Focus on the important points.
  • Standardize nomenclature and define abbreviations.
  • While it is great to make the poster aesthetically pleasing, make sure that it is easy to read.  (For instance, avoid using a background that makes it hard to read the text.)
  • Make your poster clear, well-structured and effectively formatted.

 



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