Fall 2023 - PSYC 301 D100

Intermediate Research Methods and Data Analysis (4)

Class Number: 2391

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 6 – Dec 5, 2023: Thu, 12:30–2:20 p.m.

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 8, 2023
    Fri, 7:00–10:00 p.m.

  • Instructor:

    Michael Maraun
    1 778 782-5685
    Office: RCB 4202
    Office Hours: TBD Though optional, regular participation in the office hours is highly recommended. It is expected that, among other things, students will use this time to discuss matters related to the filmed lectures, the readings, workouts, and assignments. That is to say, anything whatsoever statistical or data analytic is fair game.
  • Prerequisites:

    PSYC 201 and 210 and a minimum CGPA of 2.67.



A continuation of PSYC 201 and 210. Provides extensions of the basic theory and methods of research design and data analysis. Includes discussions of the analysis of substantive problems, the choice of appropriate research designs, and special problems that arise in the analysis of psychological data. Quantitative.


Provisional Structuring of Substantive Areas

PSYC 301 is the second in a sequence of four courses- the first being PSYC 210, the third and fourth, PSYC 410 and PSYC 411- on statistics and data analysis which SFU psychology undergraduate students may take as part of their program of studies. It is, also, a requirement for enrollment in the psychology undergraduate honours program. In addition to a thorough coverage of quantitative concepts underlying of psychological research in general, focus, in PSYC 301, is on a number of key quantitative scenarios, each involving manifold components, among these, research design (under which the data that bears on a problem is generated), data analysis, assumption checking, error control, hypothesis testing, and magnitude of effect estimation. Scenarios involving each of observational and formal experimental designs are encountered. The commitment of PSYC 301 is emphatically to scholarship. It is a course wherein thinking about quantitatives is the leitmotif. Although time is spent on computational/computer-related practice, this is not a “button-pressing” course.


PSYC 301 will be comprised of two parts:

i. Fundamentals/background/review
• Data analysis and logic of statistical inference
• Concept of relationship

ii. Selected quantitative scenarios (provisional list)
• 1-way between subject design:
- ANOVA (general relationship question)- simultaneous inference (set of specific hypotheses)
• analysis of relationship between 2 quasi-continuous variates (linear regression and related matters)
• p-way between subject design and analysis


  • 4 assignments each worth 10%: 40%
  • 1 midterm: 30%
  • 1 final exam: 30%


A+ 95 and higher
A 90-95
A- 85-90
B+ 80-85
B 75-80
B- 70-75
C+ 65-70
C 60-65
C- 55-60
D 50-55
F less than 50


Components of course

Lectures and lecture notes
Lectures, and the lecture notes on which they are based, are the primary means by which will be covered, the materials of which the course is comprised. The lectures are structured sequentially in accordance with the lecture notes, and proceed through the theoretical materials in a linear fashion, with occasional departures to address computational and output-interpretational issues. The midterm and final are based exclusively on the lectures. In each lecture, I will be referring directly to the accompanying lecture notes. However, the notes comprise but a sketch. Accordingly, elucidation, fleshing out, and expanding upon will be the standard order of business.

Note: lecture notes will be available on Canvas, in accordance with lecture schedule.

The readings will be assigned on an as needed basis. On weeks on which there are readings, these readings will be made available to you in pdf form- on Canvas- at the beginning of the week. Though it is encouraged that you acquaint yourself with the readings: i) readings are optional, the express aim in assigning them, to support the coverage provided by the lectures; ii) you will not be tested directly on the readings.

Each of the four assignments will be made available to you- on Canvas- as the semester unfolds, and will be due on the date and time specified on the schedule, below. Computations may be carried out in either spss or R. You are free to download either one or both of these programs (spss is available from SFU, it services; R, online from Cran). For those who have never used a computer to analyze data, there will an introduction to spss and R offered by the course t.a. (details available once the semester starts). And, of course, whatever else it might be good for, there is no denying that the internet provides one with countless instructional videos on all manner of subjects, including those of spss and R.
When addressing an empirical assignment question by means of data and statistical analysis, your answers must conform to the following structure: i. Introduction; ii. data analysis; iii. statement of statistical hypothesis to be tested; iv. error analysis (power computations and choice of type I error rate); v. assumption checking; vi. outcome of hypothesis test; vii. (wherein necessary) magnitude of effect estimate. The document examplesassign.pdf, available to you in the first module of Canvas, is an assignment from the past which exemplifies this proper structuring.

Midterm and final
There will be one midterm and one final, both in-class. The final is not cumulative. Neither midterm, nor final, will involve any computation. Both test on the statistical theory on which the course focuses; both are comprised of short essay questions, true and false questions calling for detailed elaboration, etc. You will receive many examples of past midterms and finals, and, once having received these, it is urged that you practice writing out answers. You are free to ask me for my opinion as to the quality of an answer. Traditionally, we spend a lot of office time, in PSYC 301, going over peoples’ answers to practice exams.

There will be a number of “workouts”, relatively brief computational/theoretical exercises, each of which you will undertake on your own and in accordance with your own schedule. Though it is highly recommended that you complete each and every workout (for they are designed to help you consolidate theoretical knowledge and master practical application), they are not for marks and will not be submitted. Rather, there will be made available to you, at the end of the week on which a workout is assigned, an answer key. You may compare your answers to the answer key at your leisure (and, of course, discuss during office hours).



Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating. Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the university community. Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the university. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the university. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the semester are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.