A03: Cultural Bias

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  • A03: Cultural Bias
    • L: Cross-cultural research and demand characteristcs
      • In cultures without historical experience of research, populations may be more affected by demand characteristics than Western participants
      • Unfamiliarity with research tradition affects the validity of the findings
      • This is because in Western culture, participant's familiarity with the general aims and objective enquiry is assumed. This may not be the case for all cultures
    • L: Interpretation of variables
      • The variables under review may not be experienced in the same way by participants of different cultures
      • Emotions may give rise to different behaviours within an indigenous culture compared to the West
      • This may affect interactions between the researcher and participants in cross-cultural studies, thus reducing validity of the findings
    • S: Recognition of universals and cultural relativism
      • We shouldn't assume all psychology is culturally relative
      • Basic facial expressions and emotions have been found to be the same all over the human world, for example
      • A full understanding of human behaviour requires the study of both universals and variations among individuals and groups
    • S: Challenging Western assumptions
      • Not all cultures think and view the world from a Western point of view
      • Understanding this may promote greater sensitivity to individual differences and cultural relativism
      • Conclusions psychologists draw may have more validity if they recognise the role of culture in bringing about the conclusions


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