As one step in the scientific method, after choosing a topic and forming a research question and hypothesis, researchers need to decide what type of…

As one step in the scientific method, after choosing a topic and forming a research question and hypothesis, researchers need to decide what type of research design they want to use. As you have learned during class, there are many different methods that a researcher could use. It can be helpful to think through the different options prior to determining what method to use. It is important to think of what is most needed from your study results when choosing what method to use. For example, is internal validity or external validity more important? As all methodologies have limitations, what are limitations that you can “live with” in regards to studying your research question? A researcher who wants to prioritize results that generalize to real world settings would likely want to prioritize strong external validity and be able to “live with” limitations to internal validity. A researcher who wants to be able to make strong causal inferences from the results would likely want to prioritize strong internal validity and be able to “live with” limitations to external validity.

Think of a topic of interest to you that involves comparing two groups of people. Then choose one of the following to answer:

A: Discuss how a quasi-experimental design could be used to study your topic.

  • What is your research question, hypothesis, and target population?
  • Why would a quasi-experimental design be better to use than other study methods for this topic?
  • What are strengths and limitations of your study that result from using a quasi-experimental design?

B: Discuss how a single factor experimental design could be used to study your topic.

  • What is your research question, hypothesis, and target population?
  • Why would a single factor experimental design be better to use than other study methods for this topic?
  • What are strengths and limitations of your study that result from using a single factor experimental design?
 

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