PSY4210 - Statistics and research design for professional psychology - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

School of Psychological Sciences


Dr Katrina Simpson

Unit guides



  • First semester 2017 (Day)


  • First semester 2017 (Day)


The aim of this unit is to provide students with a thorough understanding in statistical concepts to enable them to be informed in their chosen field. The unit begins with a review of univariate statistics and an introduction to the philosophy of research design and analysis. More advanced statistical techniques are then systematically introduced. There is a focus on the understanding of the issues that may arise around the choice of appropriate statistical technique and preparation of data, critiquing decisions made to assist in the interpretation of findings. The content will be set in a context of the needs of professional psychologists and researchers whose interests present unusual methodological demands, which in turn may influence choices in research approach and statistical technique.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Describe a range of methodological and philosophical principles in research design, analysis and interpretation.
  2. Describe, apply and evaluate research designs and analyses used by psychologists.
  3. Apply scientific research principles to data in practice.
  4. Critique data with a view to preparation, analysis and interpretation.
  5. Operate SPSS and AMOS packages to analyse data for analysis.
  6. Critique and record decisions made in the process of research examples distinguishing between fact and inference in sets of analyses.


  • Assessment (MCQ) (10%)
  • Research Workbook Part A (1500 words) (20%)
  • Research Workbook Part B (2500 words) (35%)
  • Exam (90 minutes) (35%)

Workload requirements

2 hours per week of lectures and 2 hours per fortnight for SPSS/AMOS training in labs. In addition, there will be 2 hours dedicated in the alternate fortnight with online instruction on the analytical technique delivered through the lecture. This will entail collaboration with other students and feedback provided through the lecturer. The expected undirected/private study to be completed by students will be approximately 8 hours a week. This will incorporate students recording weekly analyses in a prepared lab book, readings (text and supplementary material), preparation and cleaning of data for analysis for the upcoming tutorials, preparation and completion of the major assessment as well exams in Week 5 and the end of semester.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


Completed Bachelors Degree and a major sequence in psychology approved by the Australian Psychological Society or qualification assessed as equivalent by the Australian Psychological Society, with a distinction average for third year psychology units.


PSY4200, PSY4502.