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Chapter 2 The Research Process: Coming to Terms

CHAPTER OBJECTIVES - STUDENTS SHOULD BE ABLE TO:
Describe the research process from formulating questions to seeking and finding solutions. Describe the difference between dependent and independent variables. Identify other types of variables that may interfere with the research process. Define a hypothesis and describe how it works. Discuss the value of the null hypothesis.

OBJECTIVES, CONTINUED - STUDENTS SHOULD BE ABLE TO:
Describe the differences between a null hypothesis and a research hypothesis. List the characteristics of a good hypothesis. Explain the difference between a sample and the population. Define statistical significance and explain its importance.

CHAPTER OVERVIEW From Problem to Solution All About Variables
Other Important Types of Variables Hypotheses Samples and Populations The Concept of Significance

FROM PROBLEM TO SOLUTION

WHAT IS RESEARCH ALL ABOUT, ANYWAY?
Increasing our understanding of how and why we behave the way we do!!

THE RESEARCH PROCESS: COMING TO TERMS
From Problem to Solution Noting an interesting question Stating the question in such a way that it can be answered The Language of Research

ALL ABOUT VARIABLES

VARIABLES Variables are a class of outcomes that can take on more than one value The more precisely a variable is measured, the more useful the measurement is

DEPENDENT VARIABLES The outcomes of a research study
Depend on the experimental treatment

INDEPENDENT VARIABLES
Treatments or conditions under control of the researcher Levels—at least two different values of the independent variable must be present

INDEPENDENT VARIABLES IN FACTORIAL DESIGNS

THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN INDEPENDENT AND DEPENDENT VARIABLES:
THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN INDEPENDENT AND DEPENDENT VARIABLES: WHAT MAKES GOOD VARIABLES? Independent variable is not confounded Levels do not vary systematically with other variables Dependent variable is sensitive to changes in the independent variable

OTHER IMPORTANT TYPES OF VARIABLES

OTHER IMPORTANT TYPES OF VARIABLES
Control Variable: Has a potential influence on the dependent variable Extraneous Variable: Has an unpredictable impact on the dependent variable Moderator Variable: Variables related to independent or dependent variables, and hiding the true relationship between independent and dependent variables

Other Terms You Might See
VARIABLES—A SUMMARY Type of Variable Definition Other Terms You Might See Dependent A variable that is measured to see whether the treatment or manipulation of the independent variable had an effect Outcome variable Results variable Criterion variable Independent A variable that is manipulated to examine its impact on a dependent variable Treatment Factor Predictor variable Control A variable that is related to the dependent variable, the influence of which needs to be removed Restricting variable Extraneous A variable that is related to the dependent variable or independent variable that is not part of the experiment Threatening variable Moderator A variable that is related to the dependent variable or independent variable and has an impact on the dependent variable Interacting variable

HYPOTHESES

HYPOTHESIS Reflects the general problem under study
Restates the general problem in a form that is precise enough to allow testing

NULL HYPOTHESIS States that there is no relationship between the independent and dependent variables under study Ho: µ1 = µ2 Ho: Null hypothesis µ1: Theoretical average of population 1 µ2: Theoretical average of population 2

PURPOSE OF NULL HYPOTHESIS
A starting point for analysis Accepted as true absent other information Assumes that chance caused any observed differences Provides a benchmark for comparison

THE RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
A statement of inequality A relationship exists between the independent and dependent variables H1: ≠ H1: Research hypothesis : Theoretical average of population 1 : Theoretical average of population 2 X1 X2

DIRECTIONAL VS. NONDIRECTIONAL RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
Nondirectional Research Hypothesis Groups are different, but direction is not specified H1: ≠ Directional Research Hypothesis Groups are different, and direction is specified H1: > H1: < X1 X2 X1 X2 X1 X2

PURPOSE OF RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
Directly tested during research process To compare against null hypothesis

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN NULL AND RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
Equality between variables Refers to population Indirectly tested Stated using Greek symbols (µ) Implied Research Inequality between variables Refers to sample Directly tested Stated using Roman symbols ( ) Explicit X

WHAT MAKES A GOOD HYPOTHESIS?
Is stated in declarative form Posits a relationship between variables Reflects theory or literature Is brief and to the point Is testable

SAMPLES AND POPULATIONS

SAMPLES AND POPULATIONS
The SAMPLE is a representative portion of a POPULATION The POPULATION is the entire group of interest Results from the SAMPLE should generalize to the POPULATION

SIGNIFICANCE

SIGNIFICANCE Observed differences (PROBABLY) result from the treatment and not from chance Why? Influences other than the treatment Significance level = risk associated with not being 100% certain that null hypothesis is incorrect

HAVE WE MET THE OBJECTIVES? CAN YOU:
Describe the research process from formulating questions to seeking and finding solutions? Describe the difference between dependent and independent variables? Identify other types of variables that may interfere with the research process? Define a hypothesis and describe how it works? Discuss the value of the null hypothesis?

OBJECTIVES, CONTINUED CAN YOU:
Describe the differences between a null hypothesis and a research hypothesis? List the characteristics of a good hypothesis? Explain the difference between a sample and the population? Define statistical significance and explain its importance?

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