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Developing Research Involving Different Species: Opportunities and Empirical Foundations

Authors: A. V. Varfolomeeva, N. S. Tkachenko, A. G. Tishchenko


In this study, we addressed the problem of weak validity, implausible results, and inaccurate reporting in psychological research on different species. The theoretical basis of the study was the systems-evolutionary approach (SEA). We assumed that the root of the problem is the values and attitudes of the researchers (in particular anthropomorphism and anthropocentrism). The first aim of the study was the formulation of a research design that avoids this problem. Based on a literature review, we concluded that such design, amongst other things, should include methodics with playful components. The second aim was to conduct a series of studies on the differences in the formation of instrumental skill in rats raised and housed in different environments. As a result, we revealed that there are contradictions between some of the statements of SEA, so that it is not possible to choose one of the alternative hypotheses. We suggested that in order to get out of this problem, it is necessary to modify these provisions by aligning them with the attitude of multicentrism.

Keywords: epistemological attitudes, experimental design, validity, psychological structure, learning

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