Social Psychology Research: Bias and Ethics; As a student of psychology, it is important to fully understand how research is conducted, as well as the numerous issues associated with sound research. Two important research issues are bias and ethics. When a research study is biased, either by the study design, the participants (subject bias), or the conduct of the study or interpretation of the results (experimenter bias), the results may be misleading. When practitioners then apply the results of the study to a real world situation, the impact may be ineffective, may achieve different results than expected, or may even be harmful. Unbiased research is essential. Another important consideration in psychological research is ethics. Any research must be ethical in how it is conducted and how the results are used. A high level of ethics is especially critical when it comes to research involving human subjects, which is the case with most psychological research. Ethics in research involves honesty, objectivity, integrity, carefulness and competence, openness, respect for intellectual property, respect for privacy, confidentiality, responsible publication of findings, social responsibility, non-discrimination, legality, care of animals for those studies involving animals, and protection of the rights of human subjects. This Assignment asks you to analyze a social psychology research article for bias and ethics. The skills acquired can be applied to a critique of any scientific research study. To prepare for this assignment: • Review Chapter 1 of the course text, Social Psychology, focusing on research bias and research ethics. • Watch the “Research Methods” video from the Contemporary Videos in Social Psychology DVD. Focus on the various problems that can be associated with different types of research. • Read the online article, “What Is Ethics in Research and Why Is It Important?” Focus on the expectations of ethics for the scientific community, how results are used in the real world, and related ethical issues. • Select one of the following articles from this week’s Learning Resources: o “Intervening to Decrease Alcohol Abuse at University Parties: Differential Reinforcement of Intoxication Level” o “An Attitude-Behavior Model of Salespeople’s Customer Orientation” o “Prosocial and Antisocial Behavior in Preadolescence: Teachers’ and Parents’ Perceptions of the Behavior of Girls and Boys” o “The Self-Protective Altruist: Terror Management and the Ambivalent Nature of Prosocial Behavior” o “A Cross-Cultural Study of Environmental Motive Concerns and Their Implications for Proenvironmental Behavior” • Read your selected article thoroughly and think about the following questions: What was the purpose of this research study? How were the participants selected? What kind of design is the study? (correlational or experimental) How was data collected? Where might bias exist in the study and for how was it controlled? What might be the implications of bias in this study? In other words, if the results of this study were applied in real life and bias was indeed present, what might be the results? Was the study conducted ethically? If so, what strategies did the researchers use to assure that the study was conducted ethically? If not, what could they have done differently? The assignment -1 pages, APA style format, No Plagiarism and must be cited with references and use resources provided below to do this assignment. Thank you Analyze the article you selected by responding to the following questions: (1).Briefly, what was the purpose of the study and what were the main findings? (2).Where could bias exist in the study design, in the conduct of the study, in the behavior of the study subjects as they participate in the study, or the interpretation of results? Did the research do anything to help control for bias? Explain. If there is potential bias in the study, how might this impact the use of the study results in the real world or in future research? If the researchers controlled for bias, what might be the results if they had not controlled for bias? (3).Was the study conducted ethically? Explain in terms of the information you learned in the assigned readings. Would you implement additional strategies to assure an ethical study? Explain. Resources: • Course Text: Taylor, S. E., Peplau, L. A., & Sears, D. O. (2006). Social psychology (12th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall. o Chapter 1, “Theories and Methods in Social Psychology” (pp. 2–31) • Article: Resnik, D. (n.d.). What is ethics in research and why is it important? Retrieved July 6, 2008, from http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/resources/bioethics/whatis.cfm Your choice of one of the following articles: • Fournier, A., Ehrhart, I., Glindemann, K., & Geller, E. (2004). Intervening to decrease alcohol abuse at university parties: Differential reinforcement of intoxication level. Behavior Modification, 28(2), 167–181. Retrieved from http://auth.waldenulibrary.org/ezpws.exe?url=http://bmo.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/28/2/167 • Stock, R., & Hoyer, W. (2005). An attitude-behavior model of salespeople’s customer orientation. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 33(4), 536–552. Retrieved from http://web.ebscohost.com.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/ehost/detail?sid=2b9ddeb9-20bc-40d1-a30d-5a5f3afc1b29%40sessionmgr15&vid=1&hid=11&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZSZzY29wZT1zaXRl#db=bth&AN=18323036 • Veenstra, R., Lindenberg, S., Oldehinkel, A., De Winter, A., Verhulst, F., & Ormel, J. (2008). Prosocial and antisocial behavior in preadolescence: teachers’ and parents’ perceptions of the behavior of girls and boys. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 32(3), 243–251. Retrieved from http://auth.waldenulibrary.org/ezpws.exe?url=http://jbd.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/32/3/243 • Hirschberger, G., Ein-Dor, T., & Almakias, S. (2008). The self-protective altruist: Terror management and the ambivalent nature of prosocial behavior. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34(5), 666–678. Retrieved from http://auth.waldenulibrary.org/ezpws.exe?url=http://psp.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/34/5/666 Milfont, T., Duckitt, J., & Cameron, L. (2006). A cross-cultural study of environmental motive concerns and their implications for proenvironmental behavior. Environment & Behavior, 38(6), 745–767. Retrieved from http://auth.waldenulibrary.org/ezpws.exe?url=http://eab.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/38/6/745 Media • Pearson/Prentice Hall. (Executive Producer). (2007). Contemporary videos in social psychology [DVD]. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Author. o “Introducing Social Psychology” Click here to access a transcript for “Introducing Social Psychology” o “Research Methods” Click here to access a transcript for “Research Methods” With these Learning Resources in mind, please proceed to the Discussion.
Pick three stocks of your choice (Select stocks listed in the ASX of Australia or any other national Exchange of Australia).
1. This is a group assignment. Each group will consist of three students and each group will submit one joint report.
2. In doing this assignment, you are encouraged to refer to the texts, the reading material in Blackboard and any other material that may assist you in understanding what you are doing in this assignment. Group members are expected to actively discuss and work among themselves but not refer to the work of any other groups. Any collusion of this form will be treated seriously and penalised.
3. Please ensure that each member in a group makes an equal contribution to the assignment, as far as possible. Free riders should be reported to me and may be penalised.
4. You are expected to make this assignment an opportunity to develop you spreadsheet computational skills. Make use of Excel or any other computer spreadsheet of your choice to do your calculations and graphs.
Pick three stocks of your choice (Select stocks listed in the ASX or any other national Exchange), preferably from different industry groups. Go to the recommended websites or any other website that offers historical stock price data or to published information sources such as Yahoo Finance, or any other source of financial information. Extract weekly (for example, every Friday) closing share prices for the most recent 28 weeks
Extract also the values of the stock market index, (represented by the ASX 300 or ASX 200 Index in the case of Australia), on a weekly basis over the same time period.
Calculate the following:
(a) The rate of return in each week for each stock and for the stock market index for the 27 weekly periods. Calculate the discrete rate of return as well as the continuously compounded rate of return. Calculate the arithmetic mean return and the geometric mean return of each stock for the entire period. Use only the discrete returns for your calculations and for the calculations in the questions that follow. (10 marks)
(b) The variance of returns for each stock and the index and the covariances of returns between each pair of stocks, the covariance between each stock and the stock market index, and the corresponding correlation coefficients.
(c) Compare your results in (a) and (b) for each stock and the stock market index and comment on the risk return characteristics and performance of each of your stocks and the index. Illustrate with tables/charts as appropriate. Comment on the results, relating to what you have learnt in this course. Relate the risk return pattern and the performance of the market index and your stocks to relevant events that took place during this period. Draw on economic, political, industry and company related events that took place over this period that may have impacted on the performance of your stocks and the market index. Give bibliographic references to the sources of your information. (15 marks)
Part 2 ;
(a) Based on the discrete returns calculations in Part 1, compute the weekly rate of return and the variance of an equally weighted portfolio formed from the three stocks. Make use of your knowledge of matrix algebra in your calculations.
(b). Examine and compare the pattern of the returns of your portfolio with those of the individual stocks, and the stock index. Compare the corresponding variances. Comment on your observations, relating to material learnt in this course.
(a) Extract for each week, the yield of the 26-week Treasury bill (or equivalently the 90 day or 180-day bank accepted bill (BAB) rate) from the financial media (i.e. RBA website http://www.rba.gov.au/statistics/tables/index.html#interest_rates) over your sample period. (Remember that reported yields are usually annualised figures.) Convert the yields to weekly numbers. Use these as a proxy for the risk free rate.
(b) Estimate the Security Characteristic Line (SCL) for each of your stocks and the equal weighted portfolio, based on the ‘Market Model’, using excess returns (discrete returns less the risk free rate), using Excel regression analysis functions. Show your results graphically. From your results, compute the Beta and the Jensen’s Alpha of each stock and the portfolio. (15 marks)
(c) Calculate the total risk (the return variance) of each stock and the portfolio. Partition the total risk to their respective systematic and unsystematic risk components.
(d) Based on your observations and results in parts (b) and (c) above, comment on each of your stock’s and portfolio’s performance, and on their risk characteristics, comparing and contrasting the magnitude and the proportions of their systematic and unsystematic risk components. What further insights can you gain on the characteristics and behaviour of your stocks and portfolio compared to the analysis and observations you made in Part 1 (c) and Part 2 (b)?
From the point of view of an investor who wishes to evaluate whether the stocks that you examined are worth investing in, how useful was the analysis you carried out on these stocks? What limitations do you see in your analysis and results for investment decision making purposes? What further analysis would you wish to carry out? Explain briefly.