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Ideas for Lab Experiment Protocols

  1. May 24, 2015 #1
    I need some ideas for an assignment in Physics: I am to determine an experimental protcol which will allow me to determine if statistical differences occur in the data that I will collect. I am collecting data to find the reaction time of two subjects.

    For example, one student a few years ago brought people into this room to try a "homemade soda" (when in reality was simply Sprite). Before drinking it, the subject would play a computer game where a color will flash on the screen and you have to click the button the moment it flashes. Then after drinking it, they would do the same test again to see if anything changed.

    Basically it involved psychologically manipulating the subjects to think you're comparing the reaction time between someone who drank soda to someone who didn't, to someone who did, in order to get the "true" data you are looking for without telling them.

    Another idea involved throwing basketballs into hoops: with competion and without. It involved 20 sports players in line to throw the balls into the hoops, and data was calculated with each ball thrown into the hoops. The subjects would go inside the gym one by one to throw the balls into the hoop. After they were finished, scores for each player would be shown on a screen to show the results and the experiment will be repeated a second time. The data has to be disguised as best as possible because it would obviously effect the results if the subjects knew what they would be tested on.

    The most difficult part is coming up with a relatively original idea, and we were only given three days to do this before we have to round up all the subjects and prepare a lab report, and they must all involve finding two reaction times of some sort. I feel bad for asking for assisstance with homework but its stressing me over. Ideas would be appreciated, thank you. If it helps, this is high school Physics so there is no need to have a truly complexed idea.

    Edit: Ugh, I posted this in the wrong section. That is simply what I deserve for staying up so late lol.
    Last edited: May 24, 2015
  2. jcsd
  3. May 25, 2015 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    What was the true purpose of the experiment? Just the reaction time? Then I don't see the point of the two steps.

    You can do something similar, maybe with a different test of reaction times and a different distraction between. Or test the reaction time (and false positive rate, if the experiment is designed to give a few wrong reactions) when alone and when under observation?
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