display | more...
Many experts consider the technique of Naturalistic Observation to be the most accurate way to gather descriptive data. Naturalistic observation is, simply put, the process of watching without interfering with what you are watching. This is often useful to avoid getting inaccurate data -- a subject may behave differently in a laboratory than in it/their natural enviroment. One of the areas in which Naturalistic Observation has proved invaluable is the field of gender differences. Most of the data on this subject has come from psychologists observing children in classrooms or playgrounds (the natural environment of human children).

While naturalistic observation is an extremely useful technique, it does have its flaws. One problem is that a subject will usually behave differently knowing they are obseved than they would if they were unaware of the fact. This is usually counteracted by having the observations done over a long period of time, allowing the subject to get used to the idea of being observed. Another possible source of error is what the observers expect. Sometimes this, also, can affect what they report.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.