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If you have ever traveled cross-country, especially from east to west, you have probably
experienced the phenomenon of jet lag. This confused and overtired feeling supports the idea that
we all have a biological clock that governs our sleep-wake cycles and our sense of fatigue. We may
experience the same disorientation when our weekend sleep schedules don’t match the schedules
we maintain on weekdays or when we work night shifts.
Imagine that you have just received a research grant to identify effective treatments for
minimizing jet lag.
1. Your first task is to do a literature search using EBSCOHost and find one research article
that has tested a treatment for jet lag (or internal desynchronization) in humans. Record the
reference for your article in APA style.
You can use this as a reference for citing research using APA style.
2. After you have cited your research article, you will now write a brief paper (1-2 pages)
outlining how you will create a study and answer questions based on the following:
You have examined the existing research and have noted three suggestive treatments for alleviating
jet lag: (1) light exposure treatment; (2) doses of melatonin; and (3) 30 minutes of aerobic
exercise. Each suggestive treatment is complete with a reasonable physiological rationale, and
you don’t need to research or discuss the reason for any of these given treatments.
How might you discern which, if any, of these treatments would reduce or prevent jet lag? Is one
treatment better than the others? Are any of them effective?
Your assignment is to design a simple experiment that will determine the relative effectiveness of
those treatments. Think about what it takes for a study to be an experiment. An experiment requires:
(1) manipulation of an independent variable; (2) accurate measurement of a dependent variable;
and (3) control of extraneous variables. How would you go about accomplishing these goals in the
development of this research paradigm?
This assignment involves critical thinking. You need to identify your goals and objectives
for the experiment. Think about what assumptions you are making as you design it. How
would you be able to tell if a treatment was effective? How can you effectively measure the
dependent variable? To make sure that the effect you find is due to the independent variable,
what would you need to make sure to control or to keep constant? Your write-up should be
clear and precise, describing exactly how you would go about selecting subjects, assigning
subjects to conditions, controlling any extraneous variables, and collecting the data. Some of
the main questions you will address include:
What is your hypothesis?
What are your independent and dependent variables?
How many levels or conditions of the independent variable are necessary to test your
How will you operationally define your dependent
What other variables will you need to control?
Where and how will you conduct the study?
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