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Communication Studies
COMM 2002
David Colletto

FINAL EXAM REVIEW EMPIRICAL RESEARCH - What should be - E.g: seat-belt usage decreases auto-mobile fatalities - Quantitative based on statistical comparisons, e.g surveys, secondary data analysis, content analysis - Qualitative based on researchers informed understanding of the objects or cases, e.g focus groups, in depth interviews, content analysis, ethnography, comparative NORMATIVE RESEARCH - Addresses what ought to be - Inundated with value judgements and preferences - E.g seat belt usage ought to be mandatory SCIENTIFIC METHOD 1. Explicit: rules defined and stated 2. Systematic: evidence linked by reason or observation 3. Controlled: observations made in a rigorous manner STEPS IN THE RESEARCH PROCESS 1. Formulate theory 2. Operationalize theory 3. Select appropriate techniques 4. Observe behaviour 5. Analyze data 6. Interpret results THE HAWTHORNE EFFECT - 1939 study on the worker productivity in factories - Knew they were being studied so they worked harder - Observation changes behaviour RESEARCH GOALS 1. Basic (pure) research: goal is to advance general knowledge; understanding of patters of social behaviour 2. Applied research: goal is to attempt to bring about social and/or behavioural change, solve problems DEDUCTIVE APPROACH - A researcher gathers a hypothesis (from pre-existing theory) that must then be subjected to empirical scrutiny - Theory ------- observations/findings INDUCTIVE APPROACH - A researcher draws generalizable findings out of observations and then produces a theory - Observations/findings ----- theory CAUSAL MODEL 1. The variables must be associated (they vary together) correlation 2. The variables must be in a plausible causal sequence (believable ordering) 3. The variables must not be spuriously connected (not effected by other variables) CAUSAL MODEL TYPES 1. Intervening Variable: links an independent variable to a dependant variable X I Y 2. Source of spuriousness: a spurious variable links to both the independent variable and the dependant variable making it appear as though a relationship exists between X and Y X S/S Y 3. Antecedent variable: it influences the independent variable which then influences the dependant variable A X Y 4. Candidate variable: proposes several independent variables as possible causes of variation in a dependent variable RESEARCH PURPOSES 3 TYPES 1. Exploratory: Subjects that are new or not well studied, formulates more precise research and develops hypotheses, little theory on the topic 2. Descriptive: there is some information but not enough, provides a clearer understanding of an issue, topic, or phenomenon. 3. Explanatory: intended to test causal hypotheses explain why something exists or happens. EXPLORATORY DESCRIPTIVE EXPLANATORY - Observe the phenomenon -unbiased,accurate -unbiased,accurate -best conducted using qualitative measurement measurement research methods -qualitative or quantitative -quantitative research methods - generalization less important methods -inference and confidence, *breaking new ground -generalizations very important generalization *The Census *Canadian election studyQUALITATIVE AND QUANTITATIVE METHODS METHODS QUALITATIVE QUANTITATIVE THEORIZING less likely to start with more likely to start with theories, goal is to develop theories, theory first a conceptual understanding observation second RESEARCH DESIGN view people as they Establish cause and effect naturally occur, less likely to hold things constant SAMPLING Less concern for observing Sampling based on the logic representative cases, of probability, goal is to sample designed as study generalize conclusions, progresses sample designed before project begins DATA COLLECTION A lot of time is spent with Little time is spent with the research subjects, to research subjects. To deal deal with reactivity, with reactivity, researchers researchers must build assume subjects will react to trust with subjects being studied and therefore relationships matter most. DATA ANALYSIS Data collection and analysis Data analysis is planned in proceed
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