Child Development 138 (04) - Hembree
Social and Emotional Development
California State University, Sacramento
Fall, 2010 

 

Methods Review

I. General Research Strategies

Experimental vs. Correlational designs

 

A.  Experimental Strategies
  
   "Does X cause Y?"

 

 

1) Experimental control

 
 
 
  • Causal argument
 

  2) Variables

  • Independent

 

 
  • Dependent 

 

  

  3) Types of experiments

  • Lab vs. field experiments 

 

 

 

B. Correlational Designs

Are two variables related?

1) Correlation coefficient

 

 

 

2) Problems with Correlation: 

  • Can't establish causality (correlation does not equal causation)

 

  • Direction of causation

 

  • Third variable influence

 

 

  C. Qualitative Research

 

 

 

 

 

 

II. Typically Used Methods

A. Observation
1. Natural vs. laboratory setting/ Structured vs. unstructured
 

 

 

2. Systematic observation:

  • specimen record

 

 
  • time-sampling

 

 
  • event-sampling

 

 
  • ratings

 

 

2. Report Measures

1. Interviews

 

 

2. Questionnaires

 

 

C.  Measurement issues

1. Reliability & Validity

 

 

2. problem of bias

 

 

D. External/ecological validity

 

 

 

III. Developmental Designs

A. Longitudinal Designs = AGE CHANGE 

 

 

 

  • advantages and disadvantages

 

 

 

 B. Cross-Sectional Designs = AGE DIFFERENCES

 

 

  • advantages and disadvantages

 

 

 

C. Sequential Designs

 

 

 

 

 

IV. Ethical Guidelines

  • Protection from harm

 

  • Informed consent

 

  • Privacy

 

  • Knowledge of results

 

  • Beneficial treatments

 

 

V. METHODS AND ETHICS DISCUSSION - What's wrong?

 

 

 

 

 

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Send problems, comments or suggestions to: hembrees@csus.edu. Updated: August 25, 2010