Materials And Procedure

a. Materials and Procedure

i. For this section, things are again very flexible. Some studies include the Materials and Procedure in the same section while others break them up into two sections

1. It is a matter of choice which you choose. For me, the more complex the design, the better it is to split them up. In one section I will describe what the materials are; in the next I describe what participants did with those materials (the procedure)

2. Your Paper IV: Study Two Methods, Results, and Discussion is simple enough that I recommend combining them into one overall Materials and Procedure section. Here, you can refer back to your methods section from Paper II. (“We used the same Facebook Consensus manipulation as in study one, but here we included only the Support and Mixed conditions”).

ii. Again, the words Materials and Procedure is flush left. In this section …

1. Provide information about your materials and your procedure.

a. I suggest starting with your procedure. Tell your reader what your participants did in the order participants did them. Be specific. Assuming your study is similar to study one, I have the following recommendations (though your study may differ, so take these only as recommendations!):

i. First, talk about informed consent.

ii. Second, talk about the different versions of the hindsight bias studies. Provide enough detail so that your readers know how the conditions differ. Imagine I need to replicate your design – give me enough detail so I can do so. Also fully describe your new independent variable for study two. For example, my additional IV may be whether participants are forewarned or not about the effects of consensus. I need to fully describe that new IV in the methods for this second study

1. For example, study two MIGHT look support versus mixed conditions as two levels of one IV. However, we might also look at forewarning versus no forewarning as a second IV. This involves four cells: 1) Forewarning with support feedback, 2) Forewarning with mixed feedback, 3) No forewarning with support feedback, and 4) No forewarning with mixed feedback.

2. Make sure you have a clear idea about what your four different conditions look like.

iii. Third, talk about your dependent variables (that is, your survey questions. For these DVs, once again provide enough detail so I know exactly what questions you asked. For example, “Participants provided their gender, age, and race”. For other dependent variables, tell me how the responses were recorded (yes/no, true/false, a scale of 1 to 9, etc.). If you used a scale, note the endpoints. That is, does a 1 mean it is high or is it low? “Participants were asked, ‘How surprising was the outcome?’, and they responded on a scale from 1 (unsurprising) to 10 (surprising).’” Highlight any new DVs you created for this study. For example, I may ask a manipulation check question asking if they were forewarned (“Did you read a warning that consensus impacts how people make judgments? Yes / No – Pick one.”)

iv. Fourth, make sure to highlight which DVs you analyzed. If there are DVs participants completed but you did not analyze them, feel free to say those DVs were not analyzed.

v. Finally, mention debriefing

b. There is no set minimum or maximum on the length of the methods section, but I would expect at least a page or two as you detail your materials and procedure. Missing important aspects of your IVs and DVs or presenting them in a confused manner will lower your score in this section

c. Once again, make the new information VERY specific so that someone unfamiliar with your study could recreate your survey. If they can’t, you won’t do well!