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SOCB05H3 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Criterion Validity, Nonprobability Sampling, Construct Validity

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Rania Salem
Study Guide

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Fall 2012
Midterm Review Questions
1) For each of the following ways that surveys may be administered, list some key
advantages and disadvantages.
A) Self Administered
Time consuming
B) Interview Survey
Time consuming
C) Telephone: directory,
Some numbers remain anonymous
Over-representation: Higher class have multiple phone lines so they
are over-represented
Under-representation: homeless people don’t have phone lines
2) Define the processes of conceptualization and operationalization. How are they
different? Choose a concept, give an example of how it might be conceptualized, then
illustrate how it might be operationalized.
Conceptualization = The process of formulating and clarifying a concept by specifying
indicators that measure the absence or presence of the concept for the purpose of
E.g. Broh (2002) poses the hypothesis that students’ extracurricular activities increase
social capital, which in turn enhances academic achievement.
Academic achievement = cognitive learning outcomes that are the
products of school instruction
Extracurricular activities = school activities outside the set of courses
offered at a school
Social capital = the ability to accrue benefits through membership in
social networks
Operationalization = the development of specific research procedures that will result in
empirical observations representing concepts in the real world.
Figure out indicators
E.g. student-teacher interaction outside class > through survey Q
More indicators, better chance at getting whole concept
Indicators: Reflection of concept
3) Define each of the characteristics of survey questions listed below. Indicate whether
this characteristic is desirable or if it should be avoided. Be sure to also indicate
whether this characteristic pertains to the survey question itself or to the responses to
the survey question.

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A) Double-Barreled (pertains to the survey question)
Should be avoided
Use of “and”
Asking two questions in one worded question
E.g. do you like hockey and baking?
B) Mutually Exclusive (pertains to responses)
Answers different from each other, answer cannot be both at the sane time
(e.g. either “male” or “female”)
C) Exhaustive (pertains to responses)
All dimensions covered
4) Define reliability and validity, both of which are criteria for good-quality measurements
in social research. List the main methods used to ensure reliability. Also, list the main
types of validity in social research.
Reliability: That quality of measurement method that suggests that the same
data would have been collected each time in repeated observations of the
same phenomenon. In the context of a survey, we would expect that the
question “Did you attend religious services last week?” would have higher
reliability than the question “About how many times have you attended
religious services in your life?”
o Test-retest method = measure the same units on two separate
occasions and calculate agreement
o Split-half method = randomly divide the items measuring the concept
and calculate agreement
Validity: A term describing a measure that accurately reflects the concept it is
intended to mea- sure. For example, your IQ would seem a more valid
measure of your intelligence than would the number of hours you spend in
the library. Though the ultimate validity of a measure can never be proven,
we may agree to its relative validity on the basis of face validity, criterion
validity, content validity, construct validity, internal validation, and external
o Face validity = the measure captures the concept based on common
o Content validity = the measure represents all facets of a concept
o Criterion-related validity = the measure relates to an external criterion
o Construct validity = the measure accurately predicts other related
phenomena in a theoretically meaningful way
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