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Elements of Scientific Investigation:
Concept is a crucial element of science. This is a mental construct that
represents some part of the world inevitably in a simplified form. Example: describe
an individual: race, gender class,
Variable is a measurable trait or characteristic that is subject to change under
different conditions. Income, religion, occupation, and gender can all be variables.
A hypothesis is a statement about the relationship between two or more factors.
Essentially, a hypothesis tells us what we are looking for in our research.
The use of variables depends on measurement, which is the process of
determining the value of a variable in a specific case.
Measurement of a variable can be a bit arbitrary unless we have a specific
definition of what we want to know or mean to measure. Hence, we need to specify
exactly what we want to measure and assigning a value to each variable.
Representative Sample In most studies the researcher must select what is
known as the sample. A representative sample is a selection from a larger population
that is statistically found to be typical of that population. The RANDOM SAMPLE is
one of the most common samples used by social scientists.