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Interference Effects in Performance of a Manual Task Lab report

9 pages, exclude cover, abstract and references
1. Cover Page
2. Abstract: 1 paragraph, 200-300 WORDS, please include keywords)
3. Introduction/Brief Background/Definitions: Hypothesis, Related literature to support (Lateralization, Language, Dual-Task Interference)
4. Method: Design (Operational Definition, in seconds), Participants (n=421, handedness), Materials Used, Procedures)
5. Analysis Used
6. Review relevant literature: Rationale of the current (Extraneous variables and limitations, area of testing)
7. Results: What your results meant. In further research
– Descriptives to support inferential Group A scored higher (M= , SD= ) than B (M= , SD= ), F ()
– Interpret Results
– Discuss with reference to past studies, how does it support? significant? non significant (alternative explanation based on research. * Limitations and Implications – Areas of future research Broca and Wernicke (1-2 paragraphs) * MCGOWAN AND OLDFIELD
8. Discussion
9. Implications
10. Conclusion


Tutors notes:
Given that this is an experiment which works well (in terms of getting the result that I want so that students have something meaningful to write up), I have decided to merge the 2007-2013 data.
The task can be summarised as:
IV: balancing hand (left vs. right) Condition (silent vs. verbal)
We all know that there should be a difference between the hands (we predict the right hand to do better) and between the conditions (we predict that the silent condition leads to longer balancing times compared to the verbal condition). Thus, doing analyses on these (main) variables should be not interesting at all. Instead, we are interested in the interaction, but since we aren’t doing an ANOVA, we will analyse the dependent variable “interference”. In this experiment, interference is defined as the amount of interference due to the verbal task. It is the [Verbal balancing time – the Silent balancing time] for the left hand and for the right hand. In other words, we work out the amount of interference for the left hand and for the right hand.
Given the prediction that the left hemisphere controls both right hand and speech, we predict that doing these two tasks concurrently will lead to greater interference for the right hand.
Hence, the DV is amount of interference. <-- make sure your students understand this. Talk to the students and remind them of the procedure of the experiment that you carried out last week. Point out that the wooden dowel rod was 92 cm in length and 1.25 cm in width Please note that the data excludes left handers and participants whose balancing times exceeded 300 seconds. Students should ask themselves – why were these data excluded? Note that in your description and discussion of the interference results, it is important to graph out the means in order to see (1) the amount of interference for the left and right hands as well as (2) the interaction between the hand and condition. Make sure the students understand the dependent variable we have chosen to analyse here. In particular, make sure they see the interaction between hand and condition as well as the fact that the right hand interference score is bigger than the left hand interference score. This difference is statistically significant as indicated by the t-test. I have included all the necessary data for the write up. However, the way that the students present it in their report is up to them. In general, they should stick to the general protocols. Present the data in the form of tables and/or graphs. Point out that the data I’ve provided is the raw material for their write up. How they present it is part of the assignment. There are many more analyses that could have been carried out (e.g., including the between subjects factor of gender). However, any analyses should be done with the main question of the experiment in mind, which is, when the right hand is balancing, is the level of interference (measured by verbal minus silent times) greater than the level of interference when the left hand is balancing? The dependent measures t-test carried out suggests that the level of interference is greater for the right hand than it is for the left hand, so this result supports the hypothesis. (Normally, we would answer this question with an analysis of the interaction, but this is not done here. No matter, they can draw a graph that shows greater interference with right hand balancing than with left hand balancing). In their write up, it is most important to write in terms of the main question at hand. They should derive this from the Week 3 handout, plus the readings that are up on their Blackboard site. Emphasise to them that the main point under study is the notion of “functional resources”. This was an idea argued by Kinsbourne: the LHem of right handers controls both right handed movements and verbal functions. Hence, when both tasks are carried out concurrently, we predict that the level of interference (verbal-silent) is greater for the right hand than it is for the left hand. This is because for the left hand, the two tasks (left hand balancing and verbal production) is carried out by different hemispheres (no sharing of functional resources) whereas for the right hand the two tasks (right hand balancing and verbal production) are carried out by the left hemisphere; hence in this condition, there is competition for functional resources which leads to a greater level of interference. The onus is on the student to know how to write lab reports – Title page, abstract, introduction, etc. – and given that this is a 3rd year unit, they should have decent knowledge of how to do a lab report.

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