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experimental demand


Subject Research Methods in Psychology » Experimental Psychology

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631202899.1996.x


Procedural cues inherent in experimental (laboratory) research may give rise to respondent behaviors unrelated to the experimental manipulation(s). Such behaviors are attributed to the demand effects of the research context. Orne (1962) called explicit attention to experimental demand, which he viewed as an important threat to internal validity ( see experimentation ). Demand effects are the result of participants’ choices of the roles they assume in an experimental investigation. Will they explicitly follow the directions provided? Will they attempt to discern the hypotheses under study and, having done so, strive to confirm, or infirm, them? Cook and his colleagues (1970) suggest that participants’ prior experience in experimentation, their past histories of deception and debriefing, and similar experiment-relevant behaviors affect attitudes toward research, levels of suspicion, and the likelihood that behaviors will be influenced by (demand) factors external to the independent variable. See also: experimentation . ( 1970 ). Demand characteristics and three conceptions of the frequently deceived subject . Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , 14 , 185 – 94 . ( 1962 ). On the social psychology of the psychological experiment: With particular reference to demand characteristics and their implications . American Psychologist , 17 , 776 – 83 . ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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