You are required to do a NOVEL (not turned in for another class) experiment in S&P. The paper will be graded in the following way:

   1. You must have met with me with an idea. This requires an individual meeting with me to help you find appropriate references and make sure your topic idea is OK. Once we agree on a topic, you CANNOT change your mind unless you meet with me again. If you do not meet with me, 10 points will be taken off of your proposal. Bring all the materials that you have found so far with you to this meeting. I will fill out a form that needs to be attached to the proposal.


2. You must turn in your introduction; method section; references, informed consent, and the first page of each article you used in your introduction written in APA style. Your introduction should be a thorough examination of the field you are interested in studying and hypothesis/prediction and the methods are to be complete – summary of design, participants (approximate), materials, procedure (In other words - the Introduction and Method section are to be as if you were writing a full experimental paper). In your Method section, include a summary of design section, which has your independent and dependent variables and the exact analysis that you believe you will be running on this data (between, type of analysis, etc.). Include ALL materials that you will be using. Make sure that you use research articles. This will be worth 50 points of your grade. I will grade these and hand them back to you. KEEP THIS PROPOSAL! Every day it is late; I will take 5 points off the proposal.

You cannot start your experiment before approval has been given. If I state that this project will not work, you have 2 weeks after I hand back the proposal to redo it. Typically I only reject proposals that are illegal (getting people stoned), possibly dangerous (getting people drunk, putting people in pain), are beyond our capabilities (wanting to work with certain populations of individuals, need equipment we do not have), or make no sense (I can't see an independent and/or dependent variable). If you change your project in any other way, please make sure that I review the paper again.


3. The final paper - By this time, you will have run all of your participants and analyzed the data. The final paper will contain a title page, abstract, introduction, method, results, discussion, reference, tables/figures, informed consent forms, data analysis (SPSS printout) and will be worth 100 points. The proposal must be turned back in with the final paper. Failure to do so will cause a 10 point deduction on the final paper. Both papers are to be typed in APA style. Every day the final project paper is late will result in a 10 point deduction on that paper.


I do not require the experiment to have a set number of articles or a set number of pages – however, you need enough articles that I can see how you developed your hypothesis – however, don’t assume that 1 or 2 are enough. The argument of  “It wasn’t on line” IS NOT VALID – interlibrary loan it then or go to the library. You are to write until the paper is done. Please note: This is to be a new experiment to you. You cannot do the same experiment as you have done in another class. If you turn in a paper that is the same as you turned in for another class, you will fail the final paper. If you copy someone else’s paper you will fail the course – everyone is to write their own paper. When referring to the articles or websites you chose, be sure to write them in your own words.   Usually, if there are 5-7 words in a row that are exactly the same as in the article then its plagiarism. Further, do not use the thesaurus option in Word to change a word or two in a sentence since this still counts as plagiarism. If I can find the exact sentence in the paper or website that your sentence is based on, you have not paraphrased enough. If you copy more than 5 words in a row from a paper, you will fail that section (paraphrase appropriately). Making up data will be considered cheating and will result in failure for the course. This assignment is not just for learning how to write experimental papers, but also how to do an experiment.


Projects that others have done:
Many of these have been related to gender, age, race, personality characteristics, various design changes, etc. as well as the ones listed.
Various spatial illusions - Mueller-LyerPoggendorfPonzo, Horizontal-Vertical
3-D illusions/autostereograms - knowing and not knowing item in picture
Ambiguous images (vase/face, rabbit/duck, old/young woman, figure-ground)
Active and passive touch
2 point threshold - various parts of body, dominant/nondominant hand
Odor - memory, gender of odor, discrimination, recognition

Aromatherapy – mood, expectancy
Subliminal perception - expectancy
Taste - color, labels, temperature, smell, water

Supertasters – bitter, health issues, sensation seeking
Auditory and visual information processing and memory
Visual search tasks – change blindness or inattention blindness, feature analysis
Eyewitness memory
Threshold – size-weight illusion, Weber's law, methods developed by Fechner
Color afterimages
Localization of sound
Time perception – fun or boring
Eye color and ability to perform a task – with dark adaptation

Dark adaptation

Vestibular sense – relating vision

Kinesthesia – balancing or other tasks, relating vision

Pain – using hot sauce, different images, seeing or not

Ventriloquism effect


Retina - blind spot, location of cones, lateral inhibition

Gestalt laws (simplicity, closure, good continuation, proximity, common fate)

Motion illusions


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