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February 2, 2006

Psych out: Psychology research experiments test students’ patience

Patty Canale didn’t know what to think when she signed her name to a list of participants for an upcoming psychology experiment.

“I thought maybe I was performing an experiment,” said Canale, a freshman in The College of Arts and Sciences. I didn’t know that I’d be hooked up to electrodes and have to fill out a waiver when I got there. I thought I’d be looking at pictures.”

Like Canale, many students taking PSY 205 and PSY 209 don’t know what the individual experiments they sign up for will entail and how researchers are able to take advantage of this student requirement. Students have questioned the extent to which their participation in other peoples’ experiments has educational value for them.


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