• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Via 100 entries, 21st Century Psychology: A Reference Handbook highlights the most important topics, issues, questions, and debates any student obtaining a degree in the field of psychology ought to have mastered for effectiveness in the 21st century. This two-volume reference resource, available both in print and online, provides an authoritative source to serve students’ research needs with more detailed information than encyclopedia entries but without the jargon, detail, or density found in a typical journal article or a research handbook chapter. Students will find chapters contained within these volumes useful as aids toward starting research for papers, presentations, or a senior thesis, assisting in deciding on areas for elective coursework or directions for graduate studies, or orienting themselves toward potential career directions in psychology.


If we had to identify one concept that we hope all psychology students would master after taking their coursework in research methodology, it would be validity. Put simply, validity represents accuracy, credibility, and soundness. It is derived from the Latin word validus, which means strength. When applied to psychology, validity provides a vital tool to judge the quality of our scientific evidence about psychological phenomena.

However, despite the important role that validity plays in psychology, it can be easy for new students to get lost in the different terms and jargon associated with it. Therefore, the purpose of our chapter is twofold. We begin with a class exercise that we use to introduce validity and its role in the scientific process. Then, we review the ...

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