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Week Four Homework Exercise 1 PSYCH610 Version 1 University of Phoenix Material Week Four Homework Exercise Answer the following questions covering material from Ch 8 1 0 of Methods in Behavioral Research 1 What is a confounding variable and why do researchers try to eliminate confounding variables Provide two examples of confounding variables Confounding variables are the variables that have an effect on things or cause the problem Researchers would try to eliminate the confounding variable because this is the variable that is causing the problem in the experiment that they may be studying Cozby 2009 One example would be if conducting a controlled experiment the researcher may find that within a control group that if the participants are allowed to watch television for X amount of hours then they are more tempted to eat more fattening foods The problem in this example would be the amount of time that the participants are watching television Another example would be that if a researcher is testing a new drug but when it is taken on an empty stomach it causes someone to get sick versus if taken with food the confound variable is that if not taken with food the participant gets sick What are the advantages and disadvantages of posttest only design and pretestposttest deggn The advantages of the posttest only design are that there is mortality the researcher is able to assess the equivalency of groups with small sample size and also the researcher is able to use select participants for the study The disadvantages are that it can be very time consuming and awkward to administer so the researcher really needs to be devoted to the experiment Another disadvantage would be that with the select participants this means that there is a certain demand of the participants and this would then also lead to question the external validity Cozby 2009 3 What is meant by sensitivity of a dependent variable Week Four Homework Exercise 2 PSYCH610 Version 1 The sensitivity of a dependent means being able to detect a change in the dependent variable in relation to its dependence on an independent variable This would be the ability to detect differences between groups Cozby 2009 What are the differences between an independent groups design and a repeated measures deggn With the design of an independent group there is a different group of participants in all four conditions With the repeated measure design though there is the same group of individuals that are participating in all conditions Cozby 2009 How does an experimenter s expectations and participant expectations affect outcomes An outcome may be affected if the experimenter knows the participant and treats them differently from the other participants This could have either a negative or a positive impact on the outcome The outcome from this would depend on the relation of the experimenter to the participant This is where bias can get in the way of the experiment If the experimenter knows the participant then they may already know too much about that participant and know the limits to which they can push the participant compared to the others If the experimenter knows the participants then this may also give the experimenter an idea of what the outcome is going to be before the experiment has already been completed Cozby 2009 Provide an example of a factorial design What are the key features of a factorial design What are the advantages of a factorial design Social researchers often use factorial designs in order to assess the effects od educational methods Researchers often do this while taking into consideration the influence of socioeconomic factors and the background of the participants Cozby 2009 Describe at least four different dependent variables A dependent variable is something that you can not change So this would be for example when you put cookies in an oven you can change the temperature but you can not 10 11 Week Four Homework Exercise 3 PSYCH610 Version 1 change the time that they are supposed to cook if you did then they would ether burn or be raw Another thing would be you can change the time on your clock but this is not going to actually change what time the sun sets A third dependent variable would be if a researcher wanted to see if a certain type of music would affect grades for a student then the time that it takes for the to respond to the music would be the dependent variable What are some ways researchers can manipulate independent variables The independent variable is the portion of the experiment that the researcher has control over therefore they are able to manipulate any way necessary for the experiment that they need to Cozby 2009 If the researcher is trying to find out how studying effects test scores the independent variable is the studying so this would mean that the researcher would control how much studying the participants would do in order to get the results What is the difference between main effects and interactions Main effect is the effect of an independent variable on a dependent variable which is averaged across the other levels of independent variables Interaction is when considering the relationship among three or more variables Cozby 2009 How do moderator variables impact results Provide an example A moderator variable is a factor that is measured manipulated or selected by the researcher to determine if it modifies the relationship between the independent variable and an observed phenomenon Cozby 2009 This would be for example if a group of college student were to say that they tend to drink more when in a disagreement with a friend Through the experiment the researcher would actually find that this is not true and that college students are more likely to drink when put in social events A researcher is interested in studying the effects of story endings on preference ratings He randomly assigns participants into two groups predictable ending or surprise ending He instructs them to read the story and provide preference ratings The experimenter s variation of story endings is a straightfonNard or staged manipulation This is a straightfonNard manipulation because the researcher is instructing the group to read the story Week Four Homework Exercise 4 PSYCH610 Version 1 12 A researcher was interested in investigating the vocabulary skills of 6th graders in a program for gifted students She gave a group of participants a test of vocabulary that was aimed at the 7thgrade level She quickly discovered that there was limited variability in the scores because nearly all the students answered 90 or more of the questions correctly This outcome is called a effect This is referred to the ceiling effect Week Four Homework Exercise 5 PSYCH610 Version 1 References Cozby P 2009 Methods in Behavioral Research New York NY McGrawHill