Chapter 6 Psych 3510
Popular in Introduction to Research Methods in Psychology
Popular in Psychology (PSYC)
This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Gina Goodson on Saturday September 24, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psych 3510 at Georgia State University taught by Dr. Megan Wilson in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 4 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Research Methods in Psychology in Psychology (PSYC) at Georgia State University.
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Date Created: 09/24/16
Psych 3510: Chapter 6 1. Construct Validity of Surveys and Polls (pgs. 158-168) a. Choosing Question Formats i. Open-ended questions allow respondents to answer any way they like 1. Example: Asking people to name their favorite movie or asking for comments about a professor 2. Responses must be coded and categorized a. Can be difficult and time consuming ii. Forced-choice format allow people to give their opinion by picking the best of two or more options 1. Examples: Asking which of three political candidates people are most likely to vote for and asking for preference between two choices iii. Likert scale presents a rating scale for people to indicate their degree of agreement 1. Common terms: strongly agree, agree, neither agree nor disagree, disagree, and strongly disagree iv. Semantic differential format asks respondents to rate a target object using a numerical scale that is anchored with adjectives 1. Example: Rate 1 for easiest and 5 for hardest and 5-star rating formats 2. Writing Well-Worded Questions a. Leading questions i. Example: Presenting race relations as a “problem” that needs to be “resolved” is more negative than presenting race relations as “good” and possibly getting “better” 1. Do you think that relations between Blacks and Whites will always be a problem or that a solution will eventually be worked out? Versus >> 2. Do you think that relations between Black and Whites are as good as they’re going to get or will they eventually get better? b. Double-barreled questions i. Asks two questions in one ii. Have poor construct validity because the item could be measuring the first construct, second construct, or both 1. Example: Do you agree that the 2 amendment to our U.S. Constitution guarantees your individual right to own nd a gun and that the 2 amendment is just as important as your other Constitutional rights? c. Negatively worded questions i. Can cause confusion ii. Reduces the construct validity 1. Examples: Abortion should never be restricted vs. I favor strict restrictions on abortions d. Question order i. Earlier questions can change the way respondents understand and answer the later questions ii. Prepare different versions of a survey with the questions in different sequences to prevent confusion 3. Encouraging Accurate Responses a. Giving Meaningful Responses i. Self-reports provide the most meaningful information and may be the only option in some studies 1. Example: If researchers are conducting a study on dreams, they need self-reports to find out the content of the person’s dream b. Using Shortcuts i. Response sets (or non-differentiation) can weaken construct validities because people may adopt a consistent way of answering all questions 1. Acquiescence (or yea-saying) occurs when people say “yes” or “strongly agree” to every item instead of thinking carefully about each one a. Weakens construct validity by measuring the tendency to agree, or the lack of motivation to think and rate carefully i. Tackle this issue by reverse-wording items to slow people down so they answer more carefully; however, it can result in negatively worded items and make answering more difficult 2. Fence-sitting is when people play it safe by answering in the middle of the scale (especially in controversial surveys) a. People fence sit when the question is confusing or unclear b. Suggest people do not have an opinion, which weakens the construct validity c. Prevent this by taking away the neutral option and use a force-choice format c. Trying to Look Good i. Socially desirable responding (or fake good) occurs when respondents give answers that make them look better than they really are 1. Also, faking bad (in opposite, but similar form) ii. Prevent by assuring responses are anonymous 1. However, anonymous surveys are taken less seriously d. Self-Reporting “More Than They Can Know” i. Researchers ask whether people are capable of reporting accurately on their own feelings, thoughts, and actions e. Self-Reporting Memories of Events i. Not every accurate 4. Construct Validity of Behavioral Observations a. Examples of Claims Based on Observational Data (pgs. 169-170) b. Observations can be better than self-reports i. Making reliable and valid observations 1. Construct validity can be threatened by three problems: a. Observer bias b. Observer effects c. Reactivity ii. Observer bias: When observers see what they expect to see 1. Observers’ expectations influence their interpretation of the participants’ behaviors or outcomes of the study iii. Observer effects: When participants confirm observer expectations 1. Observers change the behavior of those they are observing so that participants’ behavior changes to match the observer’s expectations iv. Preventing observer bias and effects 1. Train observers well a. Researchers create clear rating scales (or codebooks) for multiple observers to ensure good interrater reliability 2. Masked design, or blind design, is used so the observers are unaware of the conditions to which participants have been assigned and are unaware of what the study is about v. Reactivity: When participants react to being watched 1. When people change their behavior (react) in some way when they know another person is watching 2. 3 solutions: a. Blend in i. Make unobtrusive observations where you make yourself less noticeable b. Wait it out i. Observer lets his/her presence be forgotten after participant gets used to it c. Measure the behavior’s results i. Use unobtrusive data vi. Observing people ethically
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