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Gathering Useful Data for Examining Relationships by Mind Map: Gathering Useful Data for Examining
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Gathering Useful Data for Examining Relationships

Speaking the Language of Research Studies

Types of research studies

Observational Studies, Researchers observe or question the participants about opinions, behaviors, or outcomes.

Experiments, researchers manipulate something and measure the effect of the manipulation on some outcome of interest., Randomized experiments, experiments in which the participants are randomly assigned to participate in one condition or another

Units, Subjects, Participants

Unit: Used to indicate a single individual or object being measured., Experimental Unit: The most basic entity to which different treatments can be assigned.

Subjects: When the experimental units are people

Participants: In experiments and observational studies, subjects may also be called participants

Explanatory and Response Variables

Explanatory variable is one that may explain or may cause differences in a response variable.

Response variable can also be known as an outcome or dependent variable., dependent variable: the values are sometimes thought to depend on the values of the explanatory variable.

Explanatory variables can also be known as independent variables

Confounding Variable

Confounding variable: a variable that both affects the response variable and also is related to the explanatory variable

Lurking Variable: describes a potential confounding variable that is not measured and is not considered in the interpretation of the study.

Designing a Good Experiment

Participants in randomized experiments


Randomization: random assignment to treatments or conditions

Control Groups, Placebos, and Blinding

Control groups: treated identically in all respects except they don't receive the active treatment

Placebos: A placebo looks like the real drug but has no active ingredient, Placebo effect: so strong that most drug research is done by randomly giving half the participants a placebo instead of the drug.

Blinding, Double-blind: neither the participant nor the researcher taking the measurements knows who had which treatment, Single-blind: the participants do not know which treatment they have been assigned

New node

Pairing and Blocking

Matched-pair designs: experimental designs that use either two matched individuals or the same individual to receive each of two treatments

Blocks: experimental units are divided into homogeneous groups

Design Terminology

Completely Randomized design: If treatments are randomly assigned to experimental units without using matched pairs or blocks

Matched-pair design: When matched pairs are used

Randomized block design: When blocks are used

Designing a Good Observational Study

Types of Observational Studies

Retrospective: The data is from the past

Prospective: follow participants into the future and record relevant events and variables

Case-control study: cases who have a particular attribute or condition are compared to controls who do not

Difficulties and Disaster in Experiments and Observational Studies

Interacting Variables: sometimes a second explanatory variable interacts with the principal explanatory variable in its relationship with the response variable.

Hawthorne and Experimenter Effects

Hawthorne: participants in an experiments respond differently than they otherwise would, just because they are in an experiment

Experimenter: Numerous ways in which the experimenter can bias the results

Ecological Validity: Results do not accurately reflect the impact of the variables in the real world or in everyday life.