Quantitative Methods

2 Pages
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Department
Sociology
Course Code
SOCIOL 1000
Professor
Brueggemann

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Description
Unit 1 – 1/31/2014 Quantitative Methods ­Takes a numerical approach to analysis ­Any data collected and used is quantified (categorized as a number) to which various  statistical techniques are applied ­In using statistical analysis, the researcher is able to examine the relationship between 2  or more variable ­Variables are traits, qualities, or characteristics that can take on different values in  different cases ­2 Types of Variables: Dependent Variable: the behavior to be explained or predicted; it is influenced  by the independent variable Independent Variable: explains or predicts the dependent variable; it causes  change or affects the dependent variable. ­To say one variable affects another variable is to say that there is a relationship between  the two variables, or a correlation. ­Spurious Correlation refers to the situation where a correlation between variables  exists, however the relationship is not meaningful. 1. Surveys & Questionnaires ­Most of the data used by quantitative researchers is generated through surveys and  questionnaires ­2 Popular Survey Scales: 1. Likert­Scale asks questions to which respondents responds based on level of  agreement 2. Guttman­Scale asks questions that solicit a yes or no response ­In constructing surveys and questionnaires, researchers must pay special attention to: The wording of questions. The order in which questions are organized. ­Wording and Organization have the ability to affect the responses given, and can be used  to illicit a particular response both of which social researchers attempt to avoid. ­Pros: Tend to be less time consuming than other methods Allow researchers to generalize and compare across cultures, societies, and  countries. ­Cons: Can be costly It can be easy to over­generalize Survey questions can sometimes be misinterpreted by the respondents or skipped  altogether Respondents could not take the survey seriously or not answer the questions  t
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