Since launching in September, an APA Education Directorate Web site known as the Online Psychology Laboratory (OPL) has attracted nearly 1,400 hits per day from high school and college students. The draw? Visitors to the site can participate in online versions of classic psychological studies and then analyze the data.
"OPL allows students who otherwise might not be able to use a lab to learn firsthand classic psychological principles," says Maureen McCarthy, PhD, APA's director for pre- college and undergraduate programs. She heads the project with University of Mississippi psychology professor Ken McGraw, PhD.
Teachers and students look up experiments by research design or by topic-like memory or sensation and perception. After completing an experiment, like mental rotation, students can download and analyze data from their classmates or from every participant who completed the experiment.
Teachers who would like suggestions for discussing the results and using the experiments in their classes can also find that information on the site-which is the first National Science Foundation-funded psychology entry in the National Science Digital Library, a resource for science, math and technology education.
The site also offers links to companion sites, such as the National Institute on Aging and Stanford University's Center for Narcolepsy, to round out students' educational sources, McCarthy says.