The Scientific Method and It's Relation to Psychology.
"An approach to knowledge that relies on the collecting of data, generating a theory to explain the data, producing testable hypotheses based on the theory, and testing those hypotheses empirically." (Morris/Maisto) After reading the definition for the term "scientific method," my interpretation is the method brings order to the process of researching an unknown. Psychologists are everyday people who take their curiosity further than the average person, resulting in the need for organization and guidance. The scientific method is merely a road map that psychologists use to guide themselves on their trip through the mind. Throughout their journey, they have a number of ways to test these theories and make predictions on their outcomes.
The psychologist starts off with a question and needs a guide to help him achieve his goal, the answer. The scientific method is where they will turn in hopes of a plan in their quest for the answer. What the method does is give the psychologist an outline to follow, but, as is with any outline, they must provide everything to complete the process. As the psychologist dissects his/her thoughts, they find answers, speculations as I call them, and need to research their thoughts.
Researching is mentioned in the scientific method, yet categorized into a few methods of its own. There are proven methods of research which help the scientist support and even debunk their own theories. They could range from naturalistic observation, case studies and surveys, to experimental or correlational research. Once research has begun, the theories are tested and re-tested until proven to be true. As the process evolves, theories are created, strengthened or broken. Believing that the psychologist must be neutral in the interpretation of the data is theories test themselves. .
When researching anything, one must have some control over what they are doing or else confusion ensues.