Data Analysis in Psychology

Curriculum Guideline

Effective Date:
Course Code
PSYC 2300
Data Analysis in Psychology
Humanities & Social Sciences
Start Date
End Term
Not Specified
Semester Length
Max Class Size
Contact Hours
Lecture: 4 hrs. per week / semester
Method(s) Of Instruction
Learning Activities

This course will employ a number of instructional methods to accomplish its objectives and will include some of the following: 

  • lectures
  • audio visual materials
  • small group discussion
  • research projects
  • computer based tutorial exercises
Course Description
This course introduces students to the concepts and applications of statistics and focuses on the analysis and interpretation of data from experiments and surveys using descriptive and inferential statistics. Computerized data analysis is also introduced.
Course Content
  1. Abuses of statistics
  2. Organizing and describing data
  3. Measures of central tendency
  4. Measures of variability
  5. Standard scores
  6. Description of frequency distributions
  7. Properties of normal distributions
  8. Central Limit Theorem
  9. Introduction to probability concepts
  10. Null hypothesis significance testing
  11. Analysis of Variance and t-tests
  12. Correlation methods
  13. Regression and prediction
  14. Nonparametric statistical methods
  15. Statistical significance versus practical importance
  16. Measures of effect size and confidence intervals
Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of the course the successful student will be able to:

  1. Define, describe and distinguish between descriptive and inferential statistics, and identify in what contexts each is appropriate.
  2. Define, describe, distinguish between, and demonstrate ability to calculate, by hand and/or using statistical software, various key descriptive statistical terms, such as: empirical distribution, frequency distribution, histogram, percentile, quartile, measures of central tendency (median, mode, mean), sum of squares, measures of variance (range, variance, standard deviation, within-groups variance, between-groups variance), standard score/z-scores, covariance, Pearson r, regression coefficient, model, and effect size (e.g., Cohen’s d, Eta squared). 
  3. Define, describe, distinguish between, and demonstrate ability to calculate, by hand and/or using statistical software, various key research designs and inferential statistical terms, such as: scales of variables (nominal, ordinal, interval, ratio),  independent variable (IV), dependent variable (DV), theoretical distribution, population, sample, statistic, random sampling, estimator, estimate, probability distribution, parameter, normal distribution, t distribution, F-distribution, Chi-square distribution, sampling distribution, null hypothesis significance testing (NHST), null hypothesis, alternative hypothesis, p-value, alpha, beta, power, type 1 error, type 2 error, critical value, statistical significance, and confidence interval.
  4. Describe and explain the logic of inferential statistics. This includes being able to explain what a p-value is, what statistical significance means, and how various factors, such as sample size, effect size, alpha and violation of assumptions, influence the p-value and statistical significance.
  5. Calculate, interpret, explain the rationale for, and analyze the assumptions for appropriate test statistics and p-values for situations such as the following: a) there is one IV that has two or more levels and the DV is a scale variable – the IV may be a between or within subjects IV, b) there may be a linear relationship between two variables and the null hypothesis is that the population relationship is 0, c) there are observed frequencies for one or two variables and the null hypothesis is that the distribution of observed frequencies is non-proportional.
  6. Interpret basic research results as published in academic journals.
Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with Douglas College policy.  Evaluation will be based on course objectives and will include some of the following: quizzes, multiple choice exams, essay type exams, term paper or research project, computer based assignments, etc.  The instructor will provide the students with a course outline listing the criteria for course evaluation. 

An example of one evaluation scheme:

12 quizzes  40%
Computer based homework assignments      10%
Homework exercises  10%
Midterm exam  20%
Final exam  20%
Total 100%
Textbook Materials

Textbook(s) such as the following, the list to be updated periodically.

  • Aron, A., Coups, E.J., & Aron, E. N. (2013) Statistics for psychology (6th ed.) Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.
  • Howell, D. C. (2017) Fundamental statistics for the behavioral sciences (9th Ed.) Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole.
  • Gravetter, F.J., Wallnau, L.B. & Forzano, L.B. (2018). Essentials of statistics for the behavioral sciences (9th ed.). Boston, MA: Nelson/Cengage.


  • a C or better in Foundations of Math 11 or Pre-calculus 11 (or equivalent)

Courses listed here must be completed either prior to or simultaneously with this course:

  • No corequisite courses

Courses listed here are equivalent to this course and cannot be taken for further credit:

  • No equivalency courses