PSYCHOL 3020 - Doing Research in Psychology: Advanced

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2014

The course will introduce a range of statistical methods and issues in psychological enquiry that are more complex than those taught at Level II. A wide range of issues relating to research design will be covered, including ethical considerations in psychological research. Consideration will also be given to the inferences that have been made by researchers using particular research designs in specific areas of psychological interest.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PSYCHOL 3020
    Course Doing Research in Psychology: Advanced
    Coordinating Unit Psychology
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Prerequisites PSYCHOL 2004, PSYCHOL 2005, PSYCHOL 2006 and PSYCHOL 2007
    Incompatible PSYCHOL 3000
    Assessment Practical report, written assignments, written exam
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor John Dunn

    Additional Academic Staff:
    Prof Martha Augoustinos: Ph - +61 8313 4627; Email -
    Prof Deborah Turnbull: Ph - +61 8313 1229; Email -
    Prof Nick Burns: Ph - +61 8313 3965; Email -
    Dr Rachel Stephens: Ph - +61 8313 7402; Email -

    School of Psychology Office: Ph= +61 8313 5693; Email -

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    At the successful completion of this course students will be able to:

    1.    Evaluate critically the importance of research design in psychology.
    2.    To apply knowledge and methods of contemporary psychology to the management and solution of human problems.
    3.    Evaluate critically the importance of qualitative approaches in psychological research.
    4.    Understand and apply the principles of the statistical methods introduced in the course to the field of psychology.
    5.    Evaluate critically the cultural and ethical issues that may impact on the way that the knowledge acquired in psychology is interpreted and used.

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 2,4
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 1-5
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 2,4,5
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 1-5
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 4
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 1-5
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 5
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    For additional information regarding required resources please refer to the relevant  Program Handbook at the following link:
    Recommended Resources
    Field, A. (2012). Discovering Statistics Using R. Sage.
    Navarro, D. (2013). Learning Statistics with R.

    Barr Smith Library – Psychology on the Web
    The Library is a major resource centre for students. The Research Librarian for Psychology, Maureen Bell, provides some useful information through the Internet at The website contains a list of databases, links to tutorials and help with searching methods.    

    For additional information regarding recommended resources please refer to the relevant Program Handbook at the following link:
    Online Learning
    Recorded lectures and other material will be made available on MyUni.

    This course may also use MyUni for one or more of the following:
    •    Communication with students via Announcements and Discussion Board
    •    Submission of summative assessment
    •    Access to lecture recordings
    •    Access to tutorial materials
    •    Additional readings
    •    Self-directed learning activities
    •    Exam preparation materials

    Link to MyUni:
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    The course consists of 24 1-hour lectures complemented by 5 assignments and 4 problem-solving tutorials.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Lecture attendance: 2 hours/week = 24 hours
    Tutorial attendance: 4 hours/semester = 4 hours
    Assignment preparation: 5.5 hours /week = 66 hours
    Additional reading, study, exam preparation: 4 hours/week = 48 hours
    End of semester exam = 2.5 hours

    Total: 144.5 hours
    Learning Activities Summary

    Week Topic Lecture
    Week  1 Introduction to mixed methods research Mixed methods 1
    Mixed methods 2
    Week 2 Cross-cultural research Cross-cultural 1
    Cross-cultural 2
    Week 3 Multivariate regression
    Multivariate Regression
    Revision of concepts
    Correlation and Regression
    Week 4 Multivariate regression Advanced regression 1
    Advanced regression 2
    Week 5 Multivariate regression
    Analysis of Variance
    Advanced regression 3
    Revision of concepts
    Week 6 Analysis of Variance General linear model
    Categorical and continuous variables
    Week 7 Analysis of Variance Advanced ANOVA 1
    Advanced ANOVA 2
    Week 8 Graphing Graphing 1
    Graphing 2
    Week 9 Graphing Graphing 3
    Graphing 4
    Week 10 Graphing
    Qualitative research
    Graphing 5
    Qualitative research 1
    Week 11 Qualitative research Qualitative research 2
    Qualitative research 3
    Week 12 Qualitative research Qualitative research 4
    Qualitative research 5
    Disclaimer: This program is provisional and subject to change.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Assessment Type Weighting Learning outcome(s) being addressed
    Assignment 1 Summative 10% 1-3
    Assignment 2 Summative 10% 1-3
    Assignment 3 Summative 10% 1-3
    Assignment 4 Summative 10% 1-3
    Assignment 5 Summative 10% 1-5
    Examination Summative 50% 1-5
    Assessment Detail
    The examination is 3 hours and consists of 37 multiple-choice questions, 8 short-answer questions, and 1 essay question. The relative weighting of each component is 1:3:15, respectively. Each assignment consists of written and other activities focusing on one of the following topics: mixed methods research, regression, analysis of variance, graphing, and qualitative research.

    Please refer to the relevant Program Handbook and the General Handbook for Undergraduate Psychology students (available at the links below) for further details relating to assessment.
    Please refer to the General Handbook for Undergraduate Psychology students (available at the link below) for details on submission process/requirements, penalties for late submission, the process of applying for extensions, and the staff “turn-around” timeline on assessments and the provision of feedback and policy relating to re-submission/redemptive work.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.