Research Methods notes

# Research Methods notes - Research Methods LECTURE 1, 2...

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Unformatted text preview: Research Methods LECTURE 1, 2 Scientific Method- Make initial observations o Look around and see that things tend to co-occur together and there are systematic differences between groups XX: Students who apply to certain programs usually belong to certain majors or fields of study- Formulate a theory must be parsimonious (not too big or not too small) and falsifiable (testable) o XX: Manifest Destiny I am God, etc not falsifiable! XX of programs students choose programs and majors because they are drawn to both/ interested in both, or they want a certain career plan, or the program fulfills a requirement for the major- Propose hypotheses series of testable statements o Usually put in if-then statements o XX of agreeableness if someone is high in agreeableness, they are more likely to apply to health/human services program (and vice-versa) o If X (independent), then Y (dependent)- Who will be in your study VERY FIRST QUESTION that will arise when making a test o Population every person to whom your research question is relevant or of interest (aka relates to them) Representative sample we craft the sample to look like the population in certain samples • Equal distribution of: gender, ethnicities, religion, age, 2 vs. 4 year college, public vs. private college vs. community college • External Validity a researcher’s ability to generalize their finding from the sample to the population • XX: Obama forecasters were wrong, because most college students voted for him and forecasters don’t call cell phones, just home phones not a representative sample Random sample every person in the population has an equal chance of being chosen for the study random samples are the best way to do this, but since it is difficult, often we use representative samples Most of the time, we’re forced to study a sample subset of individuals drawn from the population (can’t study all college students in the world, XX) o What happens when our sample is non-representative? XX of Obama election college students were undersampled came to erroneous (incorrect) forecaster XX: surveyed women and asked if they were currently having an extramarital affair • Important: 500k surveys were sent out • Important: how many came back? 13k • So, if you have a story to tell, you would share it, but if you’re not (not having an affair) then you have no reason to XX: only the one pissed-off customer fills up a card • Not a representative sample...
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## This note was uploaded on 08/11/2010 for the course PSC 49640 taught by Professor Schleper during the Spring '09 term at UC Davis.

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Research Methods notes - Research Methods LECTURE 1, 2...

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