5 Phases of the scientific method.


Psychology is a science, and as such, their investigations are based on systematic and controlled scientific research. In addition, research has to have an empirical and critical nature based on assumptions about the relationship between natural phenomena. Subjective opinions must be corroborated by objective reality subjecting them to tests that dictate whether these beliefs are true or not.

5 Phases of the scientific method.

To conduct this research, scientists are based on a scientific method that goes through various stages. There are several authors who interpret but explain the steps proposed by Kerlinger and Lee:

1. Problem, obstacle and idea.

An idea arises in the mind of a scientist about a phenomenon, which presents certain obstacles to its understanding. There is a part of the knowledge that is not covered and the restless mind of the scientist wants to prove it. The first step is to formulate an idea of how to make it intelligible raised.

2. Hypothesis.

Once thought of the problem, possible solutions and reviewed other similar experiences of other authors states a hypothesis. What is a hypothesis? It is a conjectural statement about the relationship between two or more phenomena or variables. To define well it has to express the relationships between variables correctly and indicate the need to verify those expressed relations. The hypothesis is the first working tool of a theory. Hypotheses must be testable to know if they are probably true or false. They are the leitmotif of all scientific research.

3. Reasoning and deduction.

It is at this stage when the scientist follows the consequences of the hypotheses. For example, if relations between music and happiness are established, the scientist concluded that increasing music experimental subjects while performing a task will increase your level of personal satisfaction or happiness subjective.

>> Related article: The happiness of going to a concert, supported by the science.

4. Observation, test and experiment.

Let’s do it. If all else has been exposed in a concise and clear. Fundamental to test a hypothesis is to demonstrate the relationship expressed by it. In this step the relationships between variables are verified. Test the relationship expressed in the problem posed in search of their testing and experimentation.

> Related article: The Milgram experiment: obedience and evil

5. Results.

As a final point to scientific method of experimentation results indicating whether the initial hypothesis can accept or reject, or modifications to be made to achieve demonstrate exposed.

We must bear in mind that the proposed sequence of the 5 phases of the scientific method do not have to be fixed. The first phase, where the idea appears in the scientific, clearly does not finish before starting the second phase of approach to the hypothesis. Before raising the final hypothesis deductions can be made for testing pilot studies on the implications of the hypothesis. Or simply, the hypothesis requires to be perfected.

5 important aspects in scientific research.

Scientists working at the theoretical and observational level, so that investigations have to be able to translate the ideas raised considering these 5 aspects:

  1. A concrete and appropriate methodological design.
  2. The subjects studied are suitable for the research field.
  3. Instruments that are as reliable and valid as possible.
  4. The variables measured must be properly operationalized and translated into an appropriate metric.
  5. The data analysis techniques selected are the most appropriate for the design and provide answers to questions raised in the investigation.

Sobre el autor

Iván Pico

Graduado en Psicología (UNED). Nº Colegiado G-5480. Diplomado en Ciencias Empresariales (USC). Máster en Psicología del Trabajo y las Organizaciones. (INESEM). Máster Universitario Oficial en Orientación Profesional (UNED). Posgrado en Neuromarketing (Universidad Camilo José Cela). Técnico Deportivo Nivel II, fútbol sala (RFEF). Especialista en Psicología Aplicada al Deporte. Etc, etc...
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