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GVPT100 Midterm 1
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Terms in this set (74)
Conceptual Question
A question expressed using ideas; is difficult to answer empirically
Concrete Question
A question expressed using tangible properties; can be answered empirically
Conceptual Definition
Describes clearly the concept's measurable properties and specifics the units of analysis to which the concept applies
Operational Definition
Describes the instrument to be used in measuring the concept and putting a conceptual definition "into operation"
Conceptual Dimension
Defined by a set of concrete traits of similar type
Multidimensional Concept
Has two or more distinct groups of empirical characteristics
Unit of Analysis
The entity (person, city, country, university, state, agency, etc.) we want to describe and analyze
Individual-Level Unit of Analysis
When a concept describes a phenomenon at its lowest possible level
Aggregate-Level Unit of Analysis
A collection of individual entities (such as neighborhoods, congressional districts, states, and countries)
Ecological Fallacy
Arises when an aggregate-level phenomenon is used to make inferences at the individual level
Systematic Measurement Error
Consistent, chronic distortion of empirical measurement
Random Measurement Error
Haphazard, chaotic distortion of measurement
Reliability
The extent to which a measurement is a consistent measure of a concept
Validity
The extent to which a measurement records the true value of the intended characteristic and does not measure any unintended characteristics
Test-Retest Method
A method of testing in which the investigator applies the measure once and then applies it again to the same units of analysis
Alternative-Form Method
A method of testing in which the investigator administers two different but equivalent versions of the instrument--one form at time point 1 and the equivalent form at time point 2
Panel Study
Contains information on the same units of analysis measured at two or more points in time; required for the test-retest method and the alternative-form method
Split-Half Method
A method of testing that is based on the idea that an operational measurement obtained from half of a scale's items should be the same as the measurement obtained from the other half
Cronbach's Alpha
A natural methodological extension of the split-half technique; instead of evaluating consistency between separate halves of a scale, Cronbach's alpha compares consistency between pairs of individual items
Face Validity
An approach in which the investigator uses informed judgment to determine whether an operational procedure is measuring what it is supposed to measure
Construct Validity
An approach in which the research examines the empirical relationships between a measurement and other concepts to which it should be related
Variable
An empirical measurement of a characteristic
Nominal-Level Variable
A variable that communicates differences between units of analysis on the characteristic being measured (separate into categories)
Ordinal-Level Variable
A variable that communicates relative differences between units of analysis (separate into rank categories)
Interval-Level Variable
A variable that communicates exact differences between units of analysis (separate into rank categories with precise differences between them)
Index
An addictive combination of ordinal variables, each of which is coded identically, and all of which are measures of the same concept
Likert Scale
An additive index of 5 or 7 value ordinals, each of which captures the strength and direction of agreement (or disagreement) with a declarative statement
Central Tendency
The average value of a variable; measured by mean, median, and mode
Mode
The most common value of a variable, as in the value to occur in the largest number of cases or units of analysis; the most basic measure of central tendency; it is also the only measure of central tendency that can be used for nominal variables
Median
The value of a variable that divides the cases right down the middle, the central data point; a measure of central tendency for ordinal or interval variables
Mean
The value of the arithmetic average of the individual values; a measure of central tendency for interval variables
Dispersion
The variation or spread of cases across its values
Frequency Distribution
A tabular summary of a variable's values
Raw Frequency
Number of individuals who gave a particular response
Total Frequency
Totaled number of raw frequencies
Cumulative Percentage
The percentage of cases at or below any given value of the variable
Bar Chart
A graphic display of data that shows the frequency distributions of the data
Percentile
The percentage of cases in a distribution that lie below a certain value
Positive Skew
Present in distributions with a longer, skinnier right hand tail; occurs when the mean is greater than the median
Negative Skew
Present in distributions with a longer, skinnier left hand tail; occurs when the mean is less than the median
Resistant Measure of Central Tendency
Another name for the median; called this because the median is less affected by extreme data points
Hypothesis
A testable statement about the empirical relationship between cause and effect
Dependent Variable
The variable that represented the effect in a causal explanation
Independent Variable
The variable that represents a causal factor in an explanation
Intervening Variable
A variable that acts as go-between or mediator between an independent variable and a dependent variable
Cross-Tabulation
A table that shows the distribution of cases across the values of a dependent variable for cases that have different values on an independent variable
Mean Comparison Table
A table that shows the mean of a depedent variable for cases that have different values on an independent variable
Direct Relationship
A relationship that runs in a positive direction
Inverse Relationship
A relationship that runs in a negative direction
Line Chart
A form of visual display wherein the vertical access represents the percentage of case in each value of the independent variable that fall into one value of the dependent variable
Linear Relationship
An increase in the independent variable is associated with a consistent increase or decrease in the dependent variable
Negative Relationship
The lower value f the independent variable is associated with a higher value of the dependent variable
Positive Relationship
The lower value of the independent variable is associated with a lower value of the dependent variable
Curvilinear Relationship
The relationship between the independent variable and the dependent variable depends on which interval or range of the independent variable is being examined
Test Group
A group composed of subjects who receive a treatment that the researcher believes is casually linked to the dependent variable
Control Group
A group composed of subjects who do not received the treatment that the researcher believes is causally linked to the dependent variable
Rival Explanation
An alternative cause for the dependent variable
Research Design
An overall set of procedures for evaluating the effect of an independent variable on a dependent variable
Experimental Design
Ensures that the test group and the control group are the same in every way except for the independent variable
Laboratory Experiment
When the control group and the test group are studied in an environment created wholly by the investigator
Field Experiment
When the control and test groups are studied in their normal surroundings, living their lives as they naturally do
Random Assignment
When every prospective participant has an equal chance of ending up in the control group or the test group
Selection Bias
When nonrandom processes determine the composition of the test and control groups
Internal Validity
The effect of the independent variable on the dependent variable is isolated from other plausible explanation within the condition created artificially by the researcher
External Validity
The effect that allows the results of the study to be applied to situations in the non-artificial, natural world
Compositional Difference
Any characteristic that varies across categories of an independent variable
Spurious Relationship
A relationship in which the control variable defines a large compositional difference across values of the independent variable' this compositional different is a cause of the dependent variable; when Z is held constant, the association between X and Y is not causal at all
Interaction Relationship
The relationship between the independent variable and the dependent variable depends on the value of the control variable
Additive Relationship
A relationship in which the control variable is a cause of the dependent variable but defines a small compositional difference across the values of the independent variable
Zero-Order Relationship
A difference obtained from a simple comparison; also known as a gross relationship or an uncontrolled relationship
Controlled Comparison Table
A table that presents a cross-tabulation between an independent variable and a dependent variable for each value of the control variable
Controlled Effect
A relationship between a causal variable and a dependant variable within one value of another causal variable
Partial Effect
I relationship between two variables after taking into account rival variables
Rule for Direction of Nominal Variables
The value of the variable that defines the left most of the cross tabulation is the base category
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