Exercise 02

Norms and Counter-norms


Due: Friday, September 8.


This exercise gives you an opportunity to consider how the norms (and counter-norms) that appear common in scientific research compare with other human activities.


Choose a realm of human activity that you are familiar with and preferably engage in yourself that is not scientific research–e.g., a sport or game, religious activity, club or social activity, political activity, or something else. Choose two norms or counter-norms in your chosen activity and in a short essay (2-3 double-spaced pages in length) describe the norms or counter-norms in your chosen activity and discuss how they compare with the norms and counter-norms common in scientific research.

You may work with one other person if you so choose.


A 2-3 page paper in Microsoft Word format using the following file-naming convention:

<lastname>-<firstname>-PSYCH490.009-ex02.docx, where you substitute your last name for and your first name for . If there are two authors, use both of your last names. If Dr. Gilmore was submitting a paper, it would look like this: gilmore-rick-PSYCH490.009-ex02.docx. Jie will create a dropbox on Canvas for submissions. When that is ready, we will let you know via email.

Please use the APA format for your paper. I found the following template document that would be a very good start:



  • Give your essay a title.
  • Write an introductory paragraph with a clear thesis statement. Here’s an example: “In this essay, I describe a norm common among ham radio operators, a counter-norm implicit in the behavior of most operators, and then compare them to comparable norms and counter-norms in science.”
  • Write two or more paragraphs in the body of your essay. Each paragraph should describe a separate topic. For example: In one paragraph, you might discuss a norm. In a second paragraph, you discuss a counter-norm, and in a third paragraph, you compare the norm and counter-norm to norms and counter-norms in scientific research.
  • Write a short concluding paragraph where you summarize your key points.