Method section only

Assignment 2

For this assignment you will be writing an APA format method section for our Halo Effect study, which we conducted as a class. To see an example of what an APA style method section should look like, see this example:

Remember the goal of the method section is to describe the “who”, “what”, “where” and “how” of your study. In other words, who was in the study? What are the demographic characteristics we know about them, and how were they recruited? What was measured in the study (i.e. how was the dependent variable measured)? Where and how did the study take place (i.e. how were participants manipulated? What were the experimental conditions? Where did the study take place? What were participants asked to do?). The method section should be written in the PAST TENSE and should provide enough detail so that anyone could replicate your study if they wanted.

The “Method” section should have three subsections: Participants, materials, procedure.

The Participants subsection should include basic information:

  • How many people total were in the study (N=?)
  • Were any people excluded from the study? How were people recruited for the study?
  • Basic demographic information that we collected on the sample: average age (and SD), how many people of each racial group? How many people of each gender? how many people of each educational background?
  • All this should be written in paragraph form with good grammar – NOT bullet pointed. Numbers should be provided for demographic information based on the data we collected – not made up based on what you think.

The materials subsection should include information on any materials used in the study:

  • If pictures were shown to participants – where did the pictures come from, and what did people see in the pictures? We got our pictures from: Talamas, S. N., Mavor, K. I., & Perrett, D. I. (2016). Blinded by beauty: Attractiveness bias and accurate perceptions of academic performance. PloS one, 11(2), e0148284.
  • A description of the scale we used to measure the dependent variable in the study (ratings of people in the photograph), which includes a short description of the way questions were asked, the number of questions asked, the response format (likert scale? Yes/no?), and interpretation information (higher scores mean…, lower scores mean…). A citation if you took the scale from another study, which in our case, we took our scale from the Lammers et al. (2016) study your read for assignment 1. It is important to provide a couple of sample questions from the actual scale.
  • When using pre-exiting published measures (or pictures), you must include an in-text citation and make sure to add it to the reference page as well

The procedure subsection should include a step-by-step of how you collected the data (think of a recipe)

  • Where did the study take place? (online? In the lab?)
  • Write in order which events occurred (what was the first thing people saw? What was the second? What was the third? Etc.)
  • Discuss experimental design (describe the conditions, and how participants were assigned to each condition (random assignment?)
  • What instructions did participants receive, if any?
  • Were the participants given a debriefing? If so, what information was included in the debriefing?


Grading: Each of the following items/criterion will be graded on a scale of 0 (completely missing) to 5 (excellent work), for a total of 30 points:

  1. Participant information is provided and written in grammatically correct structure (number of participants, breakdown by race, gender, and educational status, average age). Also should mention how participants were recruited
  2. The material subsection should include a good description of the pictures and the measure used to capture the dependent variable (see details above)
  3. Procedure section should include clear explanation of what participants were asked to do in a chronological manner
  4. Entire method section should be written with enough detail, but should not be overly repetitive and redundant
  5. Credit is given where credit is due – if you are using materials taken from another study, you must provide a citation and a reference page. If these things are not included ,you will lose points
  6. The section is written in the past tense and is well written (no grammar mistakes and no typos)


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