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Issues and Debates – Approaches in Context

5. Biases in Psychological Research

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In this fifth module, we think about biases, focusing in particular on: (i) gender bias and its origins in women’s mandated lack of involvement in research for a long period of time, leading to the legacy effect of men still being the primary population of scientific researchers; (ii) the alpha and beta biases within gender bias, the former exaggerating the differences between men and women and the latter minimising those differences; (iii) the continued issue of an overwhelming majority of widely acknowledge studies being based on white, industrialised, educated, rich and democratic (WEIRD) populations; (iv) culture bias, with a note to the IQ ‘crust’ test; (v) how we move forward in psychological research to eliminate these biases.


In this course, Dr Ayoub Bouguettaya (University of Birmingham) explores context-based approaches in psychology. In the first module, we think about an unusual social interaction and the ways in which a psychological researcher might approach understanding it. In the second module, we think about idiographic and nomothetic approaches to investigation, and how these tie into personal and social factors. In the third module, we think about individual and social research methods, including the role of attributions and circumstances. Next, we think about attribution models, focusing on Jones and Davies’ theory and Kelly’s covariation model. In the fifth module, we think about biases, including gender bias (within which are alpha and beta biases) and culture biases. In the sixth and final module, we think about some conclusions and controversies within this field, including the importance of psychology pursuing both scientific methodologies and compassion.


Dr Ayoub Bouguettaya is a lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Birmingham. His research centres around social psychology and how knowledge from that field can be applied to others, particularly health. Dr Bouguettaya is interested in how we can apply social identity theory to societal problems, as well as investigating the different perspectives one might taken on those issues. His recent publications have spanned a breadth of topics including social identification, eating behaviours, conspiracy theories, and behavioural economics.

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APA style

Bouguettaya, A. (2022, April 07). Issues and Debates – Approaches in Context - Biases in Psychological Research [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Bouguettaya, Ayoub. "Issues and Debates – Approaches in Context – Biases in Psychological Research." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 07 Apr 2022,

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