- A cue that makes participants aware of what the researcher expects to find or how participants are expected to behave.
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Extraneous Variables (EV)
- Any variable, other than the IV, which may potentially affect the DV and thereby confound the findings.
- Order effects, participant variables and situational variables may act as EVs.
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- In a repeated measures design, an extraneous variable arising from the order in which conditions are presented.
- For example, participants do better the second time because the have had practise (practise effect).
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- Allocating participants to experimental groups using random techniques.
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- A small-scale trial of a study.
- Run to test any aspects of the design, with a view to making improvements.
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- A measure of consistency.
- Internal reliability concerns consistency within a set of scores or items.
- External reliability concerns consistency over time such that it is possible to obtain the same results on subsequent occasions when the measure is used with the same thing.
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- The extent to which a study is and its findings are legitimate or true.
- Internal validity concerns whether a study has tested what it set out to test.
- External validity concerns the degree to which a research finding can be generalised to, for example, other settings (ecological validity), or other groups of people (population validity) and over time (historical validity).
- Any study that has low internal validity must lack generalisability and therefore also has low external validity.
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- The dilemmas created by the conflict between the needs of the researcher and the rights of the participants.
- For example, in order to conduct meaningful research it may be necessary to deceive participants, but this affects their right to giving fully informed consent.
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- The loss of participants from a study over time.
- This is likely to leave a biased sample, or a sample that is too small.
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- Method of selection that ensures each member of the population has an equal chance of being selected.
- For example, placing all names in a hat and drawing out the required number.
- Or by assigning each person a number and using a random number table.
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- The process of taking a sample.
- The technique used aims to produce a representative selection of the target population.
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- The group of people that the researcher is interested in.
- The group of people from whom a sample is drawn.
- The group of people about whom generalisations can be made.
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- A form of sampling bias.
- Occurs because volunteer participants are usually more highly motivated than randomly selected participants.
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- Represent how much, how long, or how many, etc. there are of something.
- Data that are measured in numbers or quantities.
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Quantitative Data Analysis
- Any means of representing trends from numerical data, such as measures of central tendency.
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Levels of Measurement
- Nominal - Data is measured in separate categories, such as grouping people according to their favourite football team.
- Ordinal - Data is ordered in some way, for example, asking people to put a list of football teams in order of liking The 'difference' between each item is not the same, i,.e, the individual may like the first item a lot more than the second, but there might only b a small difference between the items ranked second and third.
- Interval - Data is measured using unites of equal intervals, such as when counting correct answers or using any 'public' unit of measurement.
- Ratio - There is a true zero point as in most measures of physical quantities.
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- Express the 'quality' of things.
- This include the descriptions, words, meaning, pictures, texts and so on.
- They cannot be counted or quantified but it can be turned into quantitative data by counting the data in categories.
- It is sometimes said that qualitative data concern 'thoughts and feelings' - but you can also have quantitative data bout thought and feelings, for example a researcher could ask participants to rate their feelings about a film on a scale of 1 to 5. The difference between quantitative and qualitative research runs much deeper than 'thoughts and feelings'.
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