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CJ Research Methods 1-4 vocab
Terms in this set (47)
scientific investigations intended to solve practical problems
The mental process whereby fuzzy and imprecise notions are made more specific and precise. So you want to study fear of crime? What do you mean by fear of crime? Are there different kinds of fear? What are they?
is a study designed to depict the participants in an accurate way. More simply put, descriptive research is all about describing people who take part in the study.
From experience. Social science is said to be empirical when knowledge is based on what we experience
conducted for a problem that has not been clearly defined. It often occurs before we know enough to make conceptual distinctions or posit an explanatory relationship
The study of methods used to understand something; the science of finding out
One step beyond conceptualization. Operationalization is the process of developing operational definitions that describe how actual measurements will be made
Repeating a research study test the findings of an earlier study, often under slightly different conditions or for a different group of subjects. Replication results either support earlier findings or cause us to question the accuracy of an earlier study
Groups of units - people, prisons, courtrooms, or stolen autos, for example. Although criminal justice professionals are usually most concerned with individual units, social science searches for patterns that are reflected in aggression of units.
Characteristics of persons or things
The logical model in which specific expectations of hypotheses are developed on the basis of general principles. Starting from the general priniciples. Starting from the general principle that all deans are meanies, you might anticipate that this one won't let you change courses. That anticipation would be the result of deduction.
The variable assumed to depend on or be caused by another variable. If you find that sentence legnth is partly a function of the number of prior arrests, then sentence length is being treated as a dependent variable
A type of inductive theory that is based on field observation. The researcher makes observations in natural settings and then formulates a tenative theory that explains those observations
An expectation about the nature of things derived from a theory. It is a statement of something that ought to be observed in the real world if the theory is correct
The determination of whether the expectations that a hypothesis represents are indeed found in the real world
Relating to a mode of casual reasoning that seeks a detailed understanding of all factors that contribute to a particular phenomenon. Police detectives trying to solve a particular case use the idiographic mode of explanation
An independent variable is presumed to cause or determine a dependent variable. If we discover that police cynicism is partly a function of years of experience, then the experience is the independent variable and cynicism is the dependent variable.
The logical model in which general principles are developed from specific observations. Having noted that teenagers and crime victims are less supportive of police than are older people and nonvictims, you might conclude that people with more direct police contact are less supportive of police and explain why.
That quality of science whereby two different researchers studying the same problem arrive at the same conclusion. Ultimately, this is the practical criterion for what is called objectively. We agree that something is "objectively true" if independent observers with different subjective orientations conclude that it is true
A mode of causal reasoning that tries to explain a number of similar phenomena or situations. Police crime analysts trying to explain patterns of auto thefts, burglaries, or some other offense use nomothetic reasoning
A fundamental perspective or model that organizes our view of the world. Thomas Kuhn coined this term in the philosophy of science. Paradigms affect how we slect and define problems for research, together with the methods we use in conducting research
A systematic explanation for the observed facts and laws that relate to a particular aspect of life. For example, routine activities theory explains crime as the result of three key elements coming together: a suitable victim, a motivated offender , and the absence of capable guardians
Logical groupings of attributes. The variable "gender" is made up of the attributes male and female
A state in which the identity of a research subject is not known, and it is, therefore, impossible to link data about a subject to an individual's name. Anonymity is one tool for addressing the ethical issue of privacy
A paper that outlines the important ethical principals that should be followed when doing research involving human subjects. It was issued by the national commission of the experts in the United State in 1978
A state in which researchers know the identity of a research subject but promise not to reveal any information that can be attributed to an individual subject. Anonymity is not harm subjects similar, but sometimes researchers need to know subjects'names to link information from different sources. Assuring confidentiality is one way of meeting our ethical obligation to
Conforming in behavior to norms and standards embraced by a group a profession. Norms regarding ethical behavior for research on human subjects are often described by professional associations of researchers
Agreement to participate in research after being informed about the research goals, procedures, and potential risks. This information is given before asking subjects to participate. This standard procedure addresses the norm of voluntary participation, a basic tenet of research ethics
Groups like juveniles and prisoners who require special protections. Juveniles are considered unable to grant informed consent, just as juveniles are treated differently in most areas of the law. Special rules apply to prisoners because they may feel compelled to participate in research or because they may see participation as especially desirable
A study in which some specificgroup is studied over time, although data may be collected from different members in each set of observations
1. The degree to which a measure relates to other variables as expected within a system of theoretical relationships. 2. How well an observed cause and effect relationship represents the underlying casual process a researcher is interested in
A study based on observations that represent a single point in time.
Erroneously drawing conclusions about individuals based soley on the observation of groups
Whether a relationship observed in specific population, at a specific time, in a specific place would be observed in other populations, at other times, in other places. External validity is concerned with generalizabilty from a relationship observed in one setting to the same relationship in other settings. Replication enhances external validity
Whether observed associations between two or more variables are, in fact, casual associations or are due to the effects of some other variable. The internal validity of casual statements may be threatened by an inability to control experimental conditions.
A study design that involves the collection of data at different points in time, as contrasted to a cross-sectional study.
A type of longitudinal study in which data are collected from the same subjects at several points in time
Reflecting the causal reasoning that certain factors make outcomes more or less likely to happen. Havving been arrested as a juvenile makes it more likely that one will be arrested as an adult
Adjective describing a type of longitudinal study that follows subjects forward in time. " How many people who were sexually abused as children are convicted of a sexual offense as an adult?" is an example of a prospective question
Adjective describing a type of longitudinal study that looks backward, asking subjects to recall events that happened earlier in their lives or tracing official records of someone's previous actions. "How many current sex offenders were sexually abused as children?" is a retrospective questions
An approach to evaluation that studies what's called "local casuality." Interest focuses more on how interventions and measures of effect are related in a specific situation. This is different from a more traditional social science interest in finding casual relationships that apply generally to a variety of situations.
Statistical Conclusion Validity
Whether we can find covariation among two variables. This is the first of three requirements ffor causal inference. If two variables do not vary together there cannot be a casual relationship between them.
A type of longitudinal study in which a given characteristic of some population is monitored over time. An example is the series of annual Uniform Crime Report totals for some jurisdiction
Units of Analysis
The "what" or "whom" being studied. Units of analysis may be individual people, groupings of people, formal organizations, or social artifacts.
1. Whether statements about cause and effect are true or false. 2. A descriptive term used for a measure that accurately reflects what it is intended to measure. For example, police records of shoplifting. It is important to realize that the ultimate validity of a measure can never be proved. Yet we may agree as to its relative validity on the basis of face validity, criterion- related validity, content validity, amd external validity
Possible Sources of false conclusions about cause or measurement. Four categories of validity threats are linked to fundemental requirements for demonstrating cause: statisical conclusion validity, internal validity, construct validity, and external validity. In general, statiscal conclusion vvalidity and internal validity are concerned with bias; construct validity and external validity are concerned with generalization
You shouldn't ask your friends to participate in your study because they may
What is the necessary step in research design to move from a construct of interest to a variable you can manipulate or measure in your study?
Name the three common ways in which researchers operationalize their variables.
What are non - experimental designs?
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