# WHAT IS DATA? EDUC 894 Week 3. Plan for Today  Reading Cheques & Tech Talk  Erickan and Roth – What is Data?  Human Subjects Discussion ----------Dinner.

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WHAT IS DATA? EDUC 894 Week 3

Plan for Today  Reading Cheques & Tech Talk  Erickan and Roth – What is Data?  Human Subjects Discussion ----------Dinner Break-------------  Groupwork & Team Consultations  RQ honing + Methods & Methodology Planning  Human Subjects / Logistics Planning  For Next Week  Review relevant chapters in Creswell – what is useful?  Deliverable 1 Due Next Week

Ercikan & Roth – What is Data?

Data are Just Representations  Two aspects of phenomena in the world:  Quantitative (continuous, additive structure, magnitude)  Qualitative (discontinuous, non additive, multitude)  What’s the difference?  Let’s look at some examples: Material Situation Social Situation  Quick Check… Quick Check…

Source: http://images.theage.com.au/ftage/ffximage/2009/04/09/spirit_wideweb__470x314,0.jpg

Quick Check  Which Kind of Data  Involves measurement?  Best represents someone’s ethnicity?  Lead to generalizable claims?  Is more objective?

The Myth of Psychological Measurement  Classic Definition of Measurement  “the estimation of the ratio of a magnitude of a quantity to a unit of the same quantity” (Michell, 1999)  Quantity = number * unit  Once a base unit is defined, we can have any multiple  Example: The Kilogram  International prototype kept under 3 bell jars in a vault at the BIPM  2 kg is twice as much mass as the base unit Image source: http://www.bipm.org/en/si/base_units/

So what do we have in psychology?  Constructs: E.g. self-esteem  Do we all agree on what it is?  Theoretically, maybe:“the confidence and satisfaction a person has in him/herself”  How do we measure it?  Operational definitions For example, a 3 factor definitions Internal locus of control Sense of belonging and acceptance Sense of competence:  Indirectly through responses to specific questions on each factor (“a sampling of indicators”) The common “Likert scale”

So what do we have in psychology? 2  But, what does 1 unit of self-esteem look like?  Do we all agree on this?  Is 2 units of self-esteem twice as much as 1 unit?  How do we know?  What does it mean to have 0 self-esteem  Can we have negative self-esteem?  Does self-esteem only vary in one way?  These may sound like silly questions – but statistical calculations assume that “quantities” have these properties

Psychological Definition of Measurement  “The assignment of numbers to quantities of the properties of an object according to certain rules” (Stevens, 1946)  4 Kinds of scales  Ratio (“Distance to where I am standing right now”)  Interval (“30 o Celsius this weekend”)  Ordinal (“Toy Poodle is Best in Show”)  Nominal (“It’s a boy”)  Which takes us back to Erickan and Roth’s point…

Erickan & Roth’s Call to Arms  Let your Research Questions drive your methods  What kind of question are you asking?  What is happening?  Is there a systemic effect?  Why/how is it happening?  What level of inference is required?  How will you collect and analyze data to make that inference?  How will both quantitative and qualitative aspects of the phenomenon your are studying come into play?

Human Subjects Discussion

Research Ethics – Key Concepts Informed Consent What information How to consent Right to Withdraw Risks versus Benefits Evaluating the trade-off Anticipating & minimizing the risk Informing the subjects Confidentiality Data storage and collection Conflict of interest Oversight Course “review board” Providing my contact information

Dinner Break

Groupwork & Team Consultations

For Next Week  Review relevant chapters in Creswell  What is useful?  On your wiki collaboratively make a list of Chapters you found useful Specific points in the chapters to keep in mind as you craft your methods  Deliverable 1 Due Next Week  Please bring a hard copy to next class

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