Tuesday, 19 May 2015


If it asks you to outline/describe a piece of research/evidence/study then you need to puke up the study. 

If it has HOW or WHY in the question this is when you must use the PEEL structure X 1 

TURNING TO CRIME: Outline one piece of research into criminal thinking patterns [10]


AIM: Yochelson and Samenow wanted to investigate whether the type of offence committed affected cognition in criminals and whether criminals had ‘faulty’ thought processes. SAMPLE: The sample used was 255 males from a wide range of backgrounds and classes, in a secure mental hospital. PROCEDURE: The criminal thinking patterns were investigated by the investigators by using the self-report technique of interview. A Freudian based technique was used. This study was a longitudinal prospective study and followed the criminals over a period of 14 years – regularly interviewing them. RESULTS: Yochelson and Samenow analysed the data and found criminals to have similar characteristics to each other – by characteristics I mean ‘faulty, irrational thinking’. They felt separate from mainstream society, constantly setting themselves apart from others. They lacked empathy, were habitually angry and pre-judged situations. They also believed acts by parents/teachers towards them were purely impositions and they wanted to have a life of high risk-excitement at any cost. CONCLUSIONS: Yochelson and Samenow concluded they found 52 ‘errors’ of thinking in the criminals and even though these qualities exist in non-criminals they were much more ‘prominent’ in criminals. 10/10

REACHING A VERDICT: Describe how the attractiveness of a defendant can influence courtroom behaviour [10]

This question requires you to engage with the question. Use the structure PEEL – POINT-EXPLAIN-EVIDENCE-LINK

POINT & EXPLAIN: When appearing in court, defendants are generally advised by their solicitors to make the best of their appearance, in the hope that it will give them more credit with the jury. EVIDENCE: This idea was investigated by Castellow, with his work on attractiveness. In this study, a case of sexual harassment was given to participants, with attached photos. The participants were asked the question ‘Do you think Mr Radford was guilty of sexual harassment?’, and were also asked to rate the people in the photographs on scales of personality, e.g. kind-cruel, warm-cold. The results of this study found that an attractive defendant was less likely to receive a guilty verdict, and an unattractive defendant with an attractive victim was more likely to be found guilty. LINK: These results show that the more attractive a defendant, the less likely a guilty verdict. Therefore, defendants are well-advised to make the best of their appearance when appearing in court.  8/10

This question has not related to the theory e.g. the halo effect – the theories always help you to explain HOW!

AFTER A GUILTY VERDICT: How can probation serve as an alternative to imprisonment [10]

POINT: Probation can serve as an alternative to imprisonment by providing a supportive sentence that are agreed, and an offender must obey. EXPLAIN: It is an alternative as it can help offenders sort out problems that may be leading them to turn to crime. EVIDENCE: Fore example in the Mair and May study, offenders were interviewed about their experience on probation. 60% of the sample felt that probation was useful. They found that having an independent person to talk to was the most useful function of probation. It was also found that topics that were mostly discussed were problems with accommodation, money, families and drug use. LINK: The topics outlined above could potentially be key reasons why people turn to crime. Therefore, if probation can work to support and solve some of these issues, probation can work to deter crime by providing individualist help rather than prison which works as a one fits all punishment.  10/10

HEALTHY LIVING: Explain why people may not adhere to medical regimes [10]

POINT: Individuals may not adhere to medical regimes due to rationalising non-adherence. EXPLAIN: This means that an individual will way up the costs of adhering to a medical regime with the overall effects on their health. EVIDENCE: For example in the Bulpitt study they investigated the adherence to anti-hypertension drugs for high blood pressure. They found that anti-hypertension drugs have many side effects such as sleepiness, dizziness and lack of sexual functioning and this lead to people not taking them. LINK: This explains why people may not adhere to medical regimes as people will not take the medication if the costs of the medication, such as side effects, outweigh the benefits of treating an asymptomatic problem i.e. an illness which does not show indication/symptoms. 9/10

STRESS: Describe one piece of research which considers work as a source of stress [10]

AIM: Work is a source of stress.  This evidence is from Johansson’s study of measurement of stress.  SAMPLE: Johansson conducted a quasi-experiment of 24 workers in Swedish sawmill.  14 of the workers were in a high-risk group and 10 of the workers is in the control group.  PROCEDURE: Both group were asked to give a urine sample arrived work and 4 other times per day and were also given a questionnaire about emotion, use of nicotine, caffeine. RESULTS: The results show that the high-risk group has an adrenaline levels 3 times higher at the beginning of day than the borderline and continued through the day.  The control group has an adrenaline levels 2.5 times higher of the beginning day than the borderline but decrease through the day.  The self-report of high risk group shows the usage of nicotine and caffeine much higher than the control group. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest the more pressure at work, the more usage of nicotine and caffeine.  And this result considers work as a source of stress. 8/10  

Outline a cognitive technique for managing stress [10]

A cognitive technique for managing stress is ‘stress inoculation therapy.  Meichenbaum used this in a group as a way of managing stress.  Stress Inoculation Therapy has three levels to it.  In the First level, the stressed person meets with the cognitive therapist and talks about why they are stressed and is made ware about how they are feeling and functioning with everyday task.  The second level is changing these negative thinking patterns into positive patterns and ways of thinking.  The third level is applying those new positive thinking patterns to a real-life stressful situation. Meichenbaum realised that people ‘faulty thinking’ can be changed to positive thinking by seeing a cognitive therapist and talking things through. 8/10


Outline how the biological approach would explain one of the following disorders (affective, anxiety, psychotic) [10]

POINT: The biological approach could be explained through genetics. EXPLAIN: This is the idea that we can inherit schizophrenic genes from our parents and therefore have a tendency to develop schizophrenia as a result of stress later on in life. EVIDENCE: For example in Gottesman and Shields they found that in all 3 adoption studies there was an increased incidence in schizophrenia where children who had schizophrenic parents but were brought up by foster carers without schizophrenia, compared to normal children brought up by adoptive parents with schizophrenia. LINK: This therefore shows are strong argument for a genetic link, as children who have schizophrenic parents, but are nurtured by non-schizophrenic parents, schizophrenia is still apparent, therefore nature over nurture. 8/10

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