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Issues In Research
Revision Posters…read more

Slide 2

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Strengths and Limitations of
Different Methods of
A method in which the researcher manipulates an independent variable, whilst
controlling other extraneous variables, in order to measure an effect on a dependant
Strength: Very objective ­ reliably establishes cause and effect
Limitation: Low ecological validity/construct validity ­ demand
A method, such as an interview or questionnaire, where participants report on their own
Strength: Access to a person's thoughts and feelings ­ no need to set up an
artificial situation
Limitation: Unreliable if participants is dishonest/lacks confidence/lacks
insight or has a poor memory ­ participants may be unfairly influenced by the
researcher's questioning
Recording a participants behaviour by watching them, often in a natural setting.
Strength: Can directly observe the participant rather than rely on self-
reports ­ high ecological validity in natural situations
Limitations: Cannot make observations of thoughts and feelings ­ may
become invalid due to observer bias and the observer effect…read more

Slide 3

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Strengths and Limitations of
Different Methods of
Measuring two naturally occurring variables to establish the relationship between them.
Strength: Reliably measures a relationship ­ can analysis naturally occurring
phenomena which would not be open to manipulation
Limitation: does not establish cause and effect ­ variables have to be
quantified affecting construct validity
Case Study
Studying one person, group or organisation in detail.
Strength: High in validity ­ effective method as it only takes one case study
to disprove a theory
Limitation: Hard to generalise ­ subjective
Content Analysis
Analysing secondary material in order to give insight into human thought or behaviour.
Strength: Allows access to people who cannot be directly studied ­ few
ethical issues
Limitations: Open to misinterpretation ­ qualitative analysis can be
subjective ­ quantitative analysis can lack construct validity…read more

Slide 4

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Strengths and Limitations of
Qualitative and Quantitative
Qualitative Data
Methods include: self-reports using open questions, qualitative observations,
case studies, qualitative content analysis.
Strength: High construct validity, rich in detail.
Limitation: More subjective and open to different interpretations,
more difficult to discover patterns.
Quantitative Data
Methods include: experiments, self-reports using closed questions,
structured observations, correlations, quantitative content analysis.
Strength: More reliable and objective, can be analysed statistically
to identify trends.
Limitation: Low in construct validity, over simplifies complex
constricts by measuring them numerically.…read more

Slide 5

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Reliability is consistency and replicability of a method
Reliable methods tend to give quantitative data since these methods require a high
level of control increasing the chance of getting the same findings.
Types of Reliability
External Reliability: consistency between measures and tests, is the same
measure/test is used on the same individual at different times it should give the
same/similar results.
Internal Reliability: consistency between measures and tests, is a measure/test is
consistent within itself then it should give the same reading/results for a
construct throughout its measuring/testing.
Assessing Reliability
Test-retest Method: using the same measure/test on two or more different
occasions on the same participants to see if it gives the same/similar results. This
tests external reliability.
Inter-observer Reliability: Used to check the reliability of the observer by using
other observers to make sure there is an agreement on what has been observed.
Split Half Method: Comparing two sets of scores from a measure/test after
dividing it into two equal parts. If the scores are similar then it is a sign of internal
reliability.…read more

Slide 6

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Validity is the extent to which a method accurately and truthfully
measures/tests a concept
Valid methods tend to be those that give qualitative dad sine these methods involve
less manipulation and the constructs tend to be related to a real life situation.
Types of Validity
Ecological Validity: research carried out in a real-life setting and/or the results can
be applied to real-life.
Construct Validity: research where behaviour has been assessed as if it would be
in real-life and the findings would reflect this.
External Validity: research and results that can be generalised to other
people/situations/points in time and are true generally.
Assessing Validity
Face Validity: checking that a set of results look right on the face of it.
Content Validity: checking I the results look right or wrong when analysing the
data behind them, more rigorous than face validity.
Predictive Validity: putting a measure to the test by seeing if what I predicts
comes true and if so it was right in the first place and can be trusted in the future.
Concurrent Validity: checking the truth and accuracy of a measure/test by
comparing its results with results from an already established test measuring the
same concept.…read more

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