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WGU RFC 1 ch 6

Summary of Chapter 6

All types of research require collecting data
data are pieces of evidence used to examine a research topic or hypothesis
Constructs mental abstractions such as personality, creativity, and intelligence that cannot be observed or measured directly
Constructs become variables when they are stated in terms of operational definitions
Variables placeholders that can assume any one of a range of values
Categorical variables assume non-numerical (nominal) values
quantitative variables assume numerical values and are measured on an ordinal, interval, or ratio scale
Independent variable the treatment or cause
Dependent variable outcome or effect of the independent variable
Three main ways to collect data for research studies 1. administering an existing instrument 2. constructing one's own instrument 3. recording naturally occurring events (i.e., observations)
Standardized test administered, scored, and interpreted in the same way no matter when and where it is administered
Most quantitative tests are paper-and-pencil ones
Most qualitative researchers collect data by observation or oral questioning
Raw scores indicate the number of items or points a person got correct
Norm-referenced scoring compares a student's test performance to the performance of other test takers
Criterion-referenced scoring compares a student's test performance to predetermined standards of performance
Cognitive tests measures intellectual processes
achievement tests measure the current status of individuals on school-taught subjects
aptitude tests used to predict how well a test taker is likely to perform in the future
general aptitude tests typically ask the test taker to perform a variety of verbal and nonverbal tasks
Affective tests are assessments designed to measure characteristics related to emotion
most affective tests are non-projective, self report measures in which the individual responds to a series of questions about him or her self
Five basic types of scales are used to measure attitudes 1. Likert scales 2. semantic differential scales 3. rating scales 4. Thurstone scales 5. Guttman scales
Attitude scales ask respondents to state their feelings about various objects, persons, and activities
Likert scale indicate feeling a long a scale such as strongly agree, agree, undecided, disagree, strongly disagree
Semantic differential scales present a continuum of attitudes on which a respondent selects a position to indicate the strength of attitude. On a scale of 1-5, 5 being the best and 1 being the worst
rating scales present statements that respondents must rate on a continuum from high to low. Rank your feelings from 1-5, 1 being the most important and 5 being the least important
Interest inventories ask individuals to indicate personal likes and dislikes
Personality describes characteristics that represent a persons typical behavior
Personality inventories include lists of statements describing human behaviors, and participants must indicate whether each statement pertains to them.
Personality inventories may be specific to a single trait (introversion-extroversion) or maybe general and measure a number of traits.
Use of self-report measures create a concern whether an individual is expressing his or her true attitude, values, interests, or personality
Test bias in both cognitive and affective measures can distort the data obtained
Bias is present when one's ethnicity, race, gender, language, or religious orientation influences test performances
Projective tests presents ambiguous situation and require the test taker to "project"her or his true feelings on the ambiguous situation
Association most commonly used projective technique and exemplified by the inkblot test
Validity the degree to which a test measure what is supposed to measure
Test is not valid per se, it is valid for a particular interpretation and for a particular group
Validity is measured on a continuum, tests are highly valid, moderately valid, or generally valid
Content validity assesses the degree to which a test measures an intended content area
Content validity is of prime importance for achievement tests
Content validity determined by expert judgment of item and sample validity, not by statistical means
Criterion related validity determined by relating performance on a test to a performance on a second test or other measure
Criterion validity has two forms concurrent and predictive
Concurrent validity degree to which the scores on a test are related to scores on another test administered at the same time or to another measure available at the same time
Predictive validity degree to which scores on a test are related to scores on another test administered in the future
Construct validity measure of whether the construct underlying a variable is actually being measured
Construct validity determined by a series of validation studies that can include content and criterion related approaches
Used to determine construct validity confirmatory and disconfirmatory evidence
Consequential validity concerned with the potential of tests to create harmful effects for test takers
Validity of any test or measure can be diminished by such factors as unclear test directions, ambiguous or difficult test items, subjective scoring, and non-standardized administration procedures
Reliability degree to which a test consistently measure whatever it measures
Reliability is expressed numerically from 0.0 to 1.0; a high coefficient indicates high reliability
Measurement error refers to the inevitable fluctuations in scores due to person and test factors
No test is perfectly reliable but the smaller measurement error the more reliable the test
The five general types of reliability 1. Stability 2. Equivalence 3. Equivalence and stability 4. Internal consistency 5. Scorer/rater
Stability also called test-retest reliability; the degree to which test scores are consistent over time
Test-retest determined by correlating scores from the same test, administered more than once
Equivalence Equivalent-forms reliability; the degree to which two similar forms of a test produce similar scores from a single group of test takers
Equivalence and stability reliability the degree to which two forms of a test given at two different times produce similar scores as measured by correlations
Internal consistency deals with the reliability of a single test taken at one time
Internal consistency measures the extent to which the items in the test are consistent among themselves with the test as a whole
Internal consistency Split half, Kuder-Richardson 20 and 21, and Cronbach's alpha main approaches to obtaining internal consistency
Split half reliability determined by dividing a test into two equivalent halves (e.g., odd items vs. even items), correlating the two halves, and using the Spearman Brown formula to determine the reliability of the whole test
Kuder-Richardson reliability deals with internal consistency of tests that are scored dichotomously (i.e., right, wrong)(multiple choice items, true or false items)
Cronbach's alpha deals with internal consistency of tests that are scored with more than two choices (How many previous research classes have you taken? select among the following 0,1,2,3)
Scorer/rater reliability important when scoring tests that are potentially subjective
interjudge reliability refers to the reliability of two or more independent scorers
Intrajudge reliability refers to the reliability of a single individual's rating over time
Standardized achievement tests high reliabilities
Porjective tests considerably lower reliabilities
standard of error or measurement is an estimate of how often one can expect score errors of a given size
small standard error of measurement indicates high reliability
large standard error of measurement indicates low reliability
standard error of measurement used to estimate the difference between a person's obtained and true scores
Big differences indicate low reliability
Metal Measurement Yearbooks (MMYs) most comprehensive sources of test information available
Metal Measurement Yearbooks (MMYs) provide factual information on all known or revised tests, test reviews, and comprehensive bibliographies and indexes
Tests in Print (TIP) comprehensive bibliography of all tests that have appeared in preceding MMYs.
Pro-Ed Publications' Tests describe more than 2,000 tests in education, psychology, and business
Test Critiques reviews of many of these tests
ETS Test Collection Database describes more than 20,000 tests, published and unpublished
Other sources of test information professional journals and test publishers or distributors
Three most important factors to consider in selecting a test 1. validity 2. reliability 3. ease of use
Self constructed tests should be pilot tested before use to determine validity, reliability, and feasibility
Created by: Xyrarose