4 - studying behavior

4 - studying behavior - Variables 21:05 Any event,...

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Variables 21:05 Any event, situation, behavior, or individual characteristic that varies  A variable must have two or more levels of values  o The values will have true numeric, or quantitative, properties o The values of other variables identify different categories Categories of variables o Situational variables: Describe characteristics of a situation or environment o Response variables: The responses or behaviors of individuals  o Participant or subject variables: Individual differences  o Mediating variables: Psychological processes that mediate the effects of a  situational variable on a particular response 
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Relationships Between Variables 21:05 The relationship between two variables is the general way in which the different  values of one variable are associated with different values of the other variable Positive Linear Relationship Increases in the value of one variable are accompanied by increases in the  values of the second variable  Negative Linear Relationship Increases in the values of one variable are accompanied by decreases in the  values of the other variable  Curvilinear Relationship Increases in the values of one variable are accompanied by both increase and  decrease in the values of the other variable o The direction of the relationship changes at least once  o Nonmonotonic function  No Relationship The graph is simply a flat line  o Unrelated variables vary independently of one another  Correlation coefficient: A numerical index of the strength of relationship  between variables  Relationships and Reduction of Uncertainty Uncertainty: Implies that there is randomness in events  o Random variability or error variance 
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Operational Definitions of Variables 21:05 Operational definition: A definition of the variable in terms of the operations or  techniques the researcher uses to measure or manipulate it Variables must be operationally defined so they can be studied empirically There may be several levels of abstraction when studying a variable
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4 - studying behavior - Variables 21:05 Any event,...

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