Category Archives: Person X Situation

A grad student’s review of SPSP 2017 – Carol Tweten (Person X Situation)

Last month I attended the annual conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in San Antonio, TX. I think this was my 4th year attending, and I’ve enjoyed it every year. I wanted to summarize what I viewed as some of the pros of this year’s conference as well as some of the cons. Of course, everything in this post is my opinion, and you are free to disagree. Note too that I’m a graduate student; faculty members likely have a very different experience at conferences. Here we go. Pro #1: Networking SPSP is fantastic for networking, at least within Social/Personality. Big names from every topic area attend this conference! When a well-known researcher walks down a hallway or into a room, at least 3 people will lean in to the person next to them and whisper “that’s so-and-so!” and that other person will then say “Really! Where?!” It’s actually quite entertaining. Continue reading

Using R to collect Twitter data – Carol Tweten (Person X Situation)

We (the Personality & Well-Being Lab at MSU) are currently conducting a study in which we are collecting the tweets of our Twitter-using participants. The learning curve for me to actually do this in R was a bit steep, so I thought I’d share what I’ve learned here. I’ll do my  best to make this a sort of ‘guide’ for other researchers because I really feel as though more researchers should incorporate online behavior data into their work. Here are the steps I went through. I’ll also include comments on methodological decisions we had to make when designing our study. Preliminary Steps:
  1. In order to collect data from Twitter, you first need to register an API (Application Programming Interface). (Note that you need to be signed into an existing Twitter account to do this. Additionally, your Twitter account needs to have an associated mobile phone number. This can be added in the account settings in the “Mobile” section.)
    1. Click on ‘Create New App’.
    2. Fill in the Name, Description, and Website. Continue reading

ARP Highlights (from a graduate student’s perspective) – Carol Tweten (Person X Situation)

I just got back from St. Louis, where I attended the biennial conference of the Association for Research in Personality for the first time. What a great conference! I highly recommend this conference for any graduate student interested in the study of personality. Here’s what some of the most prominent personality researchers had to say*: Rich Lucas (Michigan State): Sample sizes in the Journal of Research in Personality (JRP) have increased since 2010, with a particularly large jump in 2014. Fortunately, this increase does not appear to coincide with less rigorous methods or less diverse samples. JRP welcomes submissions of replications and even has a special issue of replications coming up, in addition to a special issue on intraindividual personality change (YES!). Simine Vazire (U.C. Davis): Data cleaning involves a lot of seemingly minute decisions (e.g., drop this item, control for that variable), but they can result in over-fitting analyses to data. Continue reading

I’m disappointed: A graduate student’s perspective – Carol Tweten (Person X Situation)

I recently created this blog, and I had no intention of writing my first post about the replication conversation (if you need to catch up, David Johnson just posted links to everything here), especially because all of the points I would make have already been made and I’m getting tired of reading the same arguments over and over.

But, I* do feel the need to say: I am disappointed in our field right now. As a graduate student in training for a career in Social/Personality Psychology, you (i.e., established researchers) are the people I am learning from. I should be able to look up to and model your professionalism, passion, and dedication to science. But instead, I am reading personal attacks, inappropriate references to respected historical figures (i.e., Rosa Parks), and a conversation focused on reputations as opposed to the purpose and pursuit of scientific principles. Of course, not every comment/post meets these criteria, but enough do that, only 2 years into graduate school, I’m already starting to question what it is that we, as scientists, are doing.

SO, I urge that the conversation move forward. Discuss, for example, the potential diversity problem in this conversation. I also want to point out that all of this (at least what I’ve seen most recently…) is about ONE of the fifteen replications published in this special issue. Continue reading