PL3281C (Sem 1, AY2016/17)

By: Damien Chan
Module taken in Sem 1, AY2016/17
PL3281C

Lecturer: Dr Melvin Yap

Lecturer Review: Sharp and serious, but not scary or intimidating. Quite deadpan so you have to pay attention to hear any jokes. But Prof Yap cares a lot for students taking this module. In fact, he sets up a learning environment where you won’t be afraid to ask questions or clarify concepts, especially since the field is pretty esoteric; nothing in PL3233 or other cog mods will prepare you for it. Even friends who took PL3237 said the lab mod is a lot more technical. Also, Prof Yap is one of the biggest names in psycholing worldwide right now so you are in good hands.

Module Review
The research done in this lab mod is through lexical decision task. In case you haven’t done an LDT RP before, basically you just decide if a string of letters is a word or not and you
press the corresponding key. A simple paradigm when you’re a participant but a whole new world when you’re the researcher.
The first half of the mod will be tough. Because you’ll be required to do readings that introduce the basic processes in psycholing and that means 100 pages of theoretical
frameworks and another 50 pages of one specific part of reading processes (e.g. morphology, semantics, etc). Prof Yap will assign readings to different pairs/trios in the class to present, so if you get super lost while doing the reading (AND I GUARANTEE IT WILL HAPPEN if you’re new to psycholing) just try your best and ask the presenters/Prof
Yap any questions in that week. Of course the theory is very important when your group needs to plan your experiment and you need to know what are the variables and how to manipulate them.
After Week 5 all the readings will end and you will start on designing your experiment. The second half of the mod will be the actual doing (i.e. research proposal, doing up the EPrime, summoning and bribing friends to do your experiment, SPSS, report writing etc). In between, there’s also a midterm that will test all the theoretical knowledge so if you think you can anyhow smoke and just rely on other
people’s presentations you are wrong.
Taking this mod will be good if you’ve thought about how that “I got a dig bick / You that read wrong” thread works, or if you’re interested in how words can prime thoughts and sounds / how thoughts and sounds can prime words. Also because this mod is heavy-duty at the beginning but gets lighter in the second half (the only major shag part will be
report writing), it’s a good balance to have with your other mods (which generally get heavier in the second half of the
sem).

PL3282 (Sem 2, AY2015/16)

By: Anonymous
Module taken in Sem 2, AY2015/16
Lab in Social Psychology

Lecturer: Dr Al Au

Lecturer Review: Dr Au is a very good lecturer who explains statistical concepts very clearly, complete with examples. He also offers consultations to students to discuss their proposed research project ideas. The consultations were very insightful as Dr Au is very good at clarifying concepts and asking important questions that need to be considered. He is also very hands-on and offers good suggestions on how to improve the research design and methods.

Module Review: There aren’t many lessons as some weeks are devoted to consultation and presentations. There is also no lesson in week 13, which is when the final written report is due. Lessons mainly go through research and statistical methods and involve hands-on SPSS exercises. However, components like IRB application or the use of Medialab are not covered. These may be covered in other labs.

Individual method evaluation report (10%): This component requires picking a published article (from a list provided) and critically evaluating it (e.g. does it answer the research question, are the methods sound). Dr Au grades very reasonably.
Group research proposal presentation (10%): This is a 15 minute presentation in front of the class (background, research question, proposed methods and hypotheses). Consultations are available before this presentation, and it is also a good chance to get feedback from both the professor and the class.
Submission of research materials (5%): This is pretty much free marks, just to ensure that students come up with their research materials on time.
Group final presentation (20%): Groups will recap what they presented earlier, and also share their results and discussion. This is a good time to also get feedback and ideas on certain limitations that can be discussed in the written report.
Group participation as audience (5%): This is just to encourage groups to pose questions to other groups during their final presentation.
Individual research report (50%): Due in week 13; quite straightforward once the group final presentation is done.