Lecture on Research Methodology

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15 Jan 2011
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Reliability: true variance/total variance
Test-retest : test is administered twice at two different points in time assuming that theres no
inequality nor change (ie: IQ score should be the same for the same person/ *reliability is the most at
short intervals of time because after a year, significant changes may occur)
Inter-rater reliability : two or more independent judges score the test
Parallel-forms reliability : administer the two different tests that were created using the same content
and then compare the score (ie: version A and version B => if the score is the same, it has a good
quality)
Internal consistency : when a test has the same item more than once (ie: the same question may be
asked in different words, and they should have the same response in order to make sure theres
reliability)
Validity: you cant never get rid of random error; different methods have different systematic errors
Face validity : if a measure appears (on the face of it) to measure what it is supposed to measure (ie:
depression = have questions about isolation, sadness; so that the test looks like whats supposed to
measure -> more direct)
Convergent validity : the degree to which scores on a test correlated with scores on other tests that are
designed to assess the same construct (ie: depression scale: measure the same people on one
depression scale PLUS a new scale => if the score is the same, theres convergent validity)
Discriminant validity : the degree to which scores on a test DO NOT cor relate with scores from other
tests that ARE NOT designed to assess the same construct (ie: measure depression scale => test it
against other scales such as anxiety scale to make sure theres no correlation)
Self report: unstructured questions vs. scaling (=a continuum from very –ve to +ve attitudes)
Bogarduss social distance : measure attitudes towards members of social or ethnic groups that is
based on the assumption that ones liking for a group is reflected in the social distance that one finds
acceptable in relationships with members of other group (willingness to allow certain ethnic groups to
their own group)
Thurstone : many possible scale items are rated by a panel of judges; the group ranges from very
positive to neutral to very negative; ask to state if they agree wit h each statement
Liker t (method of summated ratings ): most common five scale is SA-A-Neutral-DA-SDA; outliers
are possible, so only the items that cor relate well with the total score are kept on the scale
Osgoods semantic differential : include various subscales that measure connotative meaning of the
attitude object; bipolar (good ---- bad) subscales (ie: evaluation (good/bad), potency (strong/weak),
activity (active/passive)
One-item scale : often used in sur veys and in experiments b/c they can measure attitudes & can avoid
redundancy; form of a thermometer scale” such as from 0 to 100
Problems
Dimensionality : a test is supposed to measure only the construct of interest, BUT a score may reflect
more than one construct (ie: depression scale may also provide information for other constructs such
as anxiety = items maybe the measures of more than one construct)
Ambiguous items : (ie: men and women should have equal rights => in what aspects?)
Items with different variability : when the item does not have the same strength as the others (ie: 3
extreme hates and 1 moderate hate measures)
Extremity bias : some people are just willing to use the endpoints of a scale
Life-right bias : people like one side of the paper more than the other (solution: can be handled
statistically by using reverse code)
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