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1. Anomalistic– the Specification <ul><li>Theoretical and methodological issues in the study of anomalous experience…
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  • 1. Anomalistic– the Specification <ul><li>Theoretical and methodological issues in the study of anomalous experience </li></ul><ul><li>• Issues of pseudoscience and scientific fraud </li></ul><ul><li>• Controversies relating to Ganzfeld studies of ESP and studies of psychokinesis </li></ul><ul><li>Factors underlying anomalous experience </li></ul><ul><li>• Cognitive, personality and biological factors underlying anomalous experience </li></ul><ul><li>• Functions of paranormal and related beliefs, including their cultural significance </li></ul><ul><li>• The psychology of deception and self-deception, superstition, and coincidence </li></ul><ul><li>Belief in exceptional experience • Research into: </li></ul><ul><li>psychic healing </li></ul><ul><li>out-of-body and near death experience </li></ul><ul><li>psychic mediumship </li></ul>
  • 2. AQA A A2 PSYCHOLOGY Lesson FIVE Ganzfeld Studies of ESP
  • 3. Lesson objectives <ul><li>Outline the Ganzfeld Procedure </li></ul><ul><li>Describe and evaluate studies of ESP that use the Ganzfeld Procedure </li></ul><ul><li>HOMEWORK: Outline and critically evaluate Ganzfeld studies of ESP (16) </li></ul>
  • 4. Starter <ul><li>Telepathy experiment: Zener cards </li></ul><ul><li>Use the information in your handbook to conduct the Zener card telepathy experiment </li></ul>
  • 5. Zener Cards
  • 6. Zener Cards <ul><li>5 cards – Star, Square, Circle, Cross, Wavy lines. </li></ul><ul><li>In a test for telepathy the cards were viewed by a remote person (the sender ) who attempted to 'transmit' the information to the participant (the receiver). </li></ul><ul><li>In a test for clairvoyance the cards were not viewed by anyone prior to the participant's psi attempt. </li></ul><ul><li>Further info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zener_cards </li></ul><ul><li>Try it yourself: </li></ul><ul><li> http:// moebius.psy.ed.ac.uk/~zener/zener.html </li></ul>
  • 7. What are Ganzfeld Studies? <ul><li>The Ganzfeld technique is a technique used to test for telepathy in which a sender attempts to transmit a mentally the identity of a randomly selected target to a receiver who is perceptually deprived </li></ul><ul><li>Participants’ eyes are covered up with half ping-pong balls so that the visual field is completely white and they wear headphones playing either white or pink noise (human noise of all kinds mixed together) </li></ul>
  • 8. What are Ganzfeld Studies? <ul><li>A red light is shone on the face of the receiver (participant) and whilst in this relaxed state, they will have a series of mental images. </li></ul><ul><li>At pre-specified times, a ‘sender’ in a remote location (which could be a room down the corridor or thousands of miles away) attempts to transmit information about a randomly-selected target, usually a picture or a video clip to the receiver </li></ul><ul><li>The receiver verbally describes their </li></ul><ul><li>imagery at this time </li></ul>
  • 9. What are Ganzfeld Studies? <ul><li>Afterwards, the receiver judges which of four possible images was being transmitted to them (the original target plus four decoys) </li></ul><ul><li>Statistically, the receiver has a 25% chance of hitting the correct answer. </li></ul>
  • 10. Ganzfeld Experiments http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3s9nGMfgr8
  • 11. Sargent (1979) <ul><li>Complete the deconstruction flowchart of Sargent’s (1979) ganzfeld study </li></ul><ul><li>Also, complete the evaluation (notice that there are some new evaluations, objectivity and replicability!) </li></ul>
  • 12. Meta-Analysis of Ganzfeld Studies <ul><li>Milton and Wiseman (1999) </li></ul><ul><li>Published a meta-analysis of 30 ganzfeld studies carried out in seven independent laboratories according to stringent guidelines: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Strict security guidelines against sensory leakage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Testing and documentation of randomization methods for selecting targets and sequencing the judging pool </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Statistical correction for multiple analyses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advance specification of the status of the experiment (pilot testing) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Full documentation in the published report of the experimental procedures </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The status of statistical tests </li></ul></ul><ul><li>These guidelines were put forward by Hyman and Honorton (1986) </li></ul>
  • 13. Meta-Analysis of Ganzfeld Studies <ul><li>Milton and Wiseman’s data set consisted of 1198 individual trials </li></ul><ul><li>Participants were found NOT to score above chance expectation (this means that their scores were found to be no more significant than guesswork!) </li></ul>
  • 14. However <ul><li>The cut off date for studies to be completed was Feb 1997 </li></ul><ul><li>This meant that one large-scale study with positive results was not included in the meta-analysis </li></ul><ul><li>If it had been included, the results of the meta-analysis would have reached statistical significance (the results would not have been due to chance but due to an influence of the IV on the DV) </li></ul><ul><li>The conditions required to establish a reliably positive outcome in ganzfeld studies have yet to be specified. </li></ul>
  • 15. Criticisms of Ganzfeld research <ul><li>Hyman (1985) conducted a Meta-analysis of 42 pieces of research (48% of all the Ganzfeld research). </li></ul><ul><li>He argued there was not enough evidence to support the existence of ESP due to flaws in the research: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Security </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Statistical analysis (eg: data being missed out or incorrectly analysed) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Procedure </li></ul></ul>
  • 16. Criticisms cont. <ul><li>Milton & Wiseman’s (1999) MA suggested Ganzfeld studies are flawed as exact replication of procedures by peer research is impossible. </li></ul><ul><li>However, Bem et al. (2001) conducted a MA using the same data as above and found a hit rate of 30% - statistically significant above the 25% expected. </li></ul><ul><li>Endersby suggests we should be wary of using MA’s to examine the effects of ESP as they are prone to missing out data! </li></ul>
  • 17. Criticisms cont. <ul><li>Rosenthal & Harris (1988) suggest Experimenter Effects could influence Ganzfeld outcomes. </li></ul><ul><li>They showed that ESP scores for participants who were treated nicely during experiments were higher than those who were treated ‘coldly’. </li></ul><ul><li>This could be seen as a confounding variable </li></ul>
  • 18. Criticisms cont. <ul><li>Schmeidler (1999) suggests the Sheep/Goat effect </li></ul><ul><li>Sheep = those who believed in ESP </li></ul><ul><li>Goats = those who were skeptical of ESP </li></ul><ul><li>There was an above average hit rate for Sheep and below average for Goats. </li></ul><ul><li>This is a huge confounding variable and shows that belief of the paranormal shapes our experiences of it. </li></ul>
  • 19. Standards for conducting the Ganzfeld experiments <ul><li>Bem & Hornorton (1994) suggest the following stringent standards for conducting the Ganzfeld exp. </li></ul><ul><li>These should help avoid Experimenter Effects, Bias, other Extraneous variables and reduce Fraud </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Strict security against sensory leakage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Proper randomization of subjects </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Statistical correction for multiple analysis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advance specification of status of experiment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Full documentation of experimental procedures </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Full description of statistical tests. </li></ul></ul>
  • 20. The Autoganzfeld <ul><li>As discussed earlier – the introduction of the Auto-G (a computerised version) was brought in. </li></ul><ul><li>This reduced human bias and created more valid, replicable studies. </li></ul><ul><li>Hornorton (1994) reviewed 11 Auto-G studies which showed results sig. higher than chance – suggesting real Anomalous experience (the existence of ESP!) </li></ul><ul><li>He does however accept that a final verdict will rest upon numerous detailed replications by independent researchers. </li></ul>
  • 21. Evaluation of Ganzfeld Studies <ul><li>Read through pages 469-70 and answer the following questions, justifying your answers using research. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How VALID do you believe Ganzfeld studies of ESP to be? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What were the key findings of HYMAN’s meta-analysis? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What were the key findings of RADIN and SCHLITZ’s meta-analysis? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the ‘file-drawer effect’? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What did Rosenthal and Harris find out about experimenter effects? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the ‘sheep-goat effect’? </li></ul></ul>
  • 22. Issues and Debates <ul><li>Bias in Psychological research </li></ul><ul><li>The role of Animals in research </li></ul><ul><li>Ethical issues </li></ul><ul><li>Nature vs Nurture </li></ul><ul><li>Free Will vs Determinism </li></ul><ul><li>Reductionism </li></ul>
  • 23. Eye on the Exam Practice <ul><li>Outline and critically evaluate findings from </li></ul><ul><li>Ganzfeld studies. (16 marks) </li></ul><ul><li>AO1 skill – 5 marks </li></ul><ul><li>A02/3 skill – 10 marks </li></ul><ul><li>About 1 1/2 pages of writing </li></ul>
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