Students at North Seattle College have the opportunity to develop social-science-based research projects with real-world implications. Students in PSY 209—Research Methods in Psychology—did just that during Winter Quarter 2017 and presented their research projects to the college community on March 22 in a public symposium.
“Assignments this year were kept at the proposal level,” explained faculty member Melissa Grinley, “allowing students to dig deeper into more challenging topics and approach their original research design with more freedom.” Students shared their ideas, simultaneously honing their presentation skills, with 10-minute talks and with poster presentations preceding and following the talks, to more than 30 interested staff, faculty and students.
“Creating my own research topic, proposal and method was an extremely helpful way to learn more about psychology research methods,” explains Claire Metzner, who presented via poster at the symposium. “It was challenging to create a well-thought-out design that upheld ethics laws and had minimal confounds, but helpful to have so much feedback from the instructor and collaboration with other students. This was a great learning experience and preparation for my career in psychology.” Connor Parenteau, another poster presenter, agrees, “All in all I would recommend this class to anyone that wants to pursue a psych degree.”
The Proposals: Verbal Presentations
Four groups of students shared their research topics in a presentation/question and answer format.
The Experience of Pornography Performers: A Grounded Theory
Authors: Terra Leigh Bell, Theresa Castro and Emily Purington
To avoid predetermined attitudes and biases among psychologists, the study proposes to use focus groups comprised of pornography performers in Hollywood, California, to ask questions about job satisfaction, economic stability, general contentment and self-perception.
Video Game Usage and Childhood Abuse: A Longitudinal Study on Their Relation to Developing Addictive Tendencies
Authors: Dakota Chronis, Jiawei He and Mason Littell
This study proposes to investigate the possible influences of video game usage on addictive behaviors later in life.
Is There a Correlation between Prefrontal Cortex Damage and Major Depression?
Author: Maxwell Fischer
People with injuries to the prefrontal cortex are hypothesized to have more issues with major depression, correlated with the size of the brain lesion.
The Progression of Interdependence and Collectivism on Second-generation American Children
Authors: James Booth, Noor Shahin and Hudson Sylte
This study looks for a systematic moral difference between children with immigrant parents and children with American-born parents with respect to financial and emotional interdependence as well as core values.
The Proposals: Poster Presentations
These researchers shared their proposals via poster presentations.
The Impact of Prefrontal Cortex Trauma on the Development of Depression
Author: Claire Metzner
This study aims to illustrate an association between emotional and physical trauma by showing that physical damage to the prefrontal cortex leads to increased levels of depression.
Cannabidiol (CBD) as a Benign Treatment for Schizophrenia
Authors: Susanne Abiem, Alicia Gehring and Connor Parenteau
The hypothesis of this study is that CBD would lessen the cognitive and negative effects of schizophrenia without the side effects of antipsychotics.
Social Media Exposure and the Effects on Self-perceived Adventurousness
Authors: Adria Chiu, Nathan Cooper and Brett Minor
This study would test the notion that adventurousness (based on a sensation-seeking scale) negatively correlates with the viewing of social media photos, specifically depicting travel destinations.
Effects of Exposure to Instagram “Popular” Feed on Self-esteem in Adolescents
Authors: Casey Hunt, Jeanette Ita, Katie Spink and Marcella Taslim
The proposed study would test the hypothesis that the more time adolescents spend on the Instagram “popular feed”, the lower their self-esteem will be, due to social comparison. (The “popular feed” consists of photos of the most popular people, celebrities and trends currently on the social media platform.)
For information about the psychology program at North, see these pages.