Week3-+Measurements

Week3-+Measurements - WEEK3 1.Variables 2. Measurements 1

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WEEK 3 1. Variables  2. Measurements 1
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#1. Conceptualization (Basic definitions) Concept : Mental images   Concept vs. Variable:  different level of abstraction “Variable= observable events to represent underlying concept”   Conceptualization : specifying precisely what we mean by our concepts in the  research (assigning definition) 2
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#2. Operationalization  : Process of developing operational indicators (actual measurement) “describes the research operations that will specify the value or category of a  variable on each case.”  Anybody can be a coder with the operational definition  3
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#3. Guidelines for developing questio ns Responses to questions: Open-vs. closed ended Relevance No socially desirable questions Brief and clear Range of variation Yes/No or degree of response  4
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#4. Examples (1) 1.Granovetter’s “Strength of weak ties.” (AJS 1973) Concept: strength of ties Conceptual definition:  Frequency of contact with friend who passed along job  information (in his study) Operational definition   Q. How often did you see the contact around the time he/she passed on the job  information? 1)Often (at least twice a week) 2)Occasionally (greater than once a year, less than twice a week) 3)Rarely (once a year or less) Sample: people who recently found jobs through contacts 5
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#4. Examples (2) 1.Operationalizing the concept of Religiosity. (TB. 119) Conceptual definition:  “Being religious.” Several strategies of operationalizing religiosity.   1)Measuring religious affiliation  : Not capture the intensity of belief 2) The frequency of attendance at religious service   : GSS survey “How often do you attend religious services? 3) Identification of 5 dimensions of religiosity (Multidimensional approach)  : Sets of questions for measuring specific dimensions “Would you say that one’s religious commitment gives life a certain purpose which  it would not otherwise have?” Answers: strongly agree, agree, disagree, strongly disagree  6
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#5. Indicator  An indicator consists of a single observable measure  such as a single questionnaire  item in a survey.”  Indicators are imperfect representation of concepts. 1)They contain errors of classification Ex. Respondents indicates an event occurred when it really didn’t 2) They rarely capture all the meanings of a concept. > Validity problem!  7
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#6. Reliability and Validity                               (evaluating the adequacy of  indicators)  Reliability = How consistent is the indicator? -Stability and Consistency over time 
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This note was uploaded on 11/20/2011 for the course SOCIOLOGY 920:311 taught by Professor Phillips during the Fall '10 term at Rutgers.

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Week3-+Measurements - WEEK3 1.Variables 2. Measurements 1

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