Wednesday, March 5, 2014

My Psychology Project (Part 2)

If you currently staring at the screen going "Part 2? Say whaaaat?" Then I am going to point you toward this post and this post. They're both pretty much identical, but there are different comments in each place, so if you want to see that, you should check out both posts.

For my psychology project, I chose to do an observation on perception. When we see things that are similar placed near each other, usually in something of an orderly fashion, we tend to group them together. I decided to see how that grouping would go if I arranged books in certain ways, to see if people could see the way I set up the books the way I did, or if they saw something completely different, or even if the whole line of books simply looked like a line of randomness that apparently meant something to me but nothing to you.

There were bunches of comments (of which I am SO thankful for, so thank you very much if you took the time to leave a comment on one of the posts), and I found it incredibly interesting to see what people said, especially the ones that were somewhat more difficult to figure out--some of y'all got creative.

So now I'm going to go through all five pictures and tell you:
- How I actually DID organize the books
- What I expected a majority of responses would be
- What the majority of responses actually WERE
- Any other type of observation/commentary that may or may not pop into my head at any given moment



Photo #1 
 Everyone got this one right--these are organized by color. Blue, red, green, black. What I found most interesting about this one was the few people (very few--no more than a handful of people) who took the time in their responses to list out the colors, or to specify the pattern the colors go in. I never would have considered asking you guys to list that, because I thought this one was super easy. I honestly didn't expect anyone to get this one wrong. So if this were a test or something, y'all would totally have aced it.

Photo #2 
Most of you got this one right--these are grouped by series, and they're in order within that group. All I was looking for was for you to tell me that it was grouped by series, though. The most common response that WASN'T series was author, which is actually true. If it's a series, then of course the author is a constant in each little grouping. I'd expected people to get that they're all grouped by their series, but I never even considered them being seen as grouped by their authors. The most intriguing response on this one was that they were in order by the height of the first book in the series. I didn't even notice that these pretty much ARE in order by the height of the first book in each series. The Secret Circle books look a little out of that order and maybe Blue is For Nightmares, but other than that, the height thing is a perfectly reasonable guess. 

Photo #3 
 I actually didn't plan this one to be too difficult, but some people had trouble with it. These ones are in order alphabetically by title. According to people I know, Beautiful Disaster threw them off, because they saw the DISASTER and missed the BEAUTIFUL, because of the fonts. Don't get me wrong, a lot of you DID guess this one, but I didn't really think this one would have much variation. Someone guessed that this one was in order by genre, and another said that this one seemed to be in order by heartbreak/sadness. That one is without a doubt the most interesting response here. I personally don't think these are in order by heartbreak/sadness, but that is also subjective. There are more than a few books in this picture that pulled at my heartstrings. 

Oh, and to the person who said that this one looked like a mess--until they enlarged it and saw the titles...HA! You legit made me laugh. :)

Photo #4 
 This was the one that the most people had trouble with, which is exactly what I expected. I have these books grouped by publisher, and most people wouldn't look for that. A bunch of people did get this one, but a bunch of people didn't, too. They guessed, or they said they had no clue, or they were honest and told me they could think of nothing before looking at other comments and realizing they were grouped by pub. Since this one was harder to get, there were a lot of guesses. Author, publication date, genre (specifically paranormal), color, and a few people actually guessed that these were my favorite books. Which is something of a valid guess, since Fangirl is in there, along with representation from most of my favorite series/authors. But there are also eight books in this picture that I haven't read. There was no way for you to know that, though--which again means that the favorites guess could certainly be valid.

Also, to the girl that followed my lead and answered this one with "I DON'T KNOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
WAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" made me laugh as well. I feel like the people who made me laugh should get bonus points or something. 

Photo #5 
 Like the first photo, I figured this one was a piece of cake--and y'all proved me right. Everyone got this correct. The books are in order by height/size, smallest to largest. There wasn't too much variation in these answers, seeing as this one wasn't really hard to guess. My favorite answer, though, was "Ascending book height..." because I like fancy words. Sometimes. And at this point in time, I see "ascending" as a fancy word. You know, at first, I was kind of worried no one would get this one because I thought the height change was too subtle. I realize that thought was completely silly now, but still. I worried for a bit. And then I posted, and everyone was getting it right, and I did my happy dance.

I originally thought up this project and went through with it because I thought it could be a fun way to incorporate something I'm interested in and love (books) with school, in a way that didn't involve writing an essay or something for English class. Now, I'm actually super glad I chose to do this. It's kind of crazy town how some of the responses were nothing like anything I would have imagined y'all saying. I never considered that photo #4 would get such a wide range of guesses. I never thought that photo #3 would lead someone to think of the level of heartbreak in each novel. And that's the point of this project--we all perceive things in different ways, because all of our minds work differently. I definitely had a plan when I organized these books, and a lot of people figured out what each of those plans were. But others didn't. They saw things in a different way, imagined the books grouped together in a different way.

So I guess what I'm trying to say is that this project turned out to be really cool to me, and a lot more fun than any other idea I could have thought up. I seriously loved reading all the responses as they trickled in.

And on that note, I shall end this unbelievably long post. Again, thank you so much to everyone who participated and helped me out by responding to the posts--whether it was on Bookish, here, or some other way for whatever reason, all of your guesses were so helpful, and I appreciate all your pretty faces. :)


  1. Heheh yay for my use of fancy I'm not sure if that was me...I may just be trying to take credit for somebody else's fanciness...............................
    ANYway...I just wanted to say I thought your project was really cool and it was fun participating!
    ...oh and thanks for appreciating my pretty face :)

  2. Great post/s Jessica!! What a fun and incredibly interesting (to me) experiment. I hope your teacher thinks it's great too. *two thumbs up*


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