You are here

The Research Experience
Share

The Research Experience
Planning, Conducting, and Reporting Research

Additional resources:


February 2017 | 504 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
The Research Experience: Planning, Conducting, and Reporting Research presents a process-oriented approach to research for students in the behavioral sciences. In-depth, practical advice for conducting each step of the research process includes coverage of the most common research methods and current technologies—including Qualtrics, Google Scholar, and Amazon Mechanical Turk—as well as techniques for finding participants and collecting data in a variety of settings. With robust pedagogy and six helpful appendices, this text will further readers’ ability to produce well-executed projects and critically evaluate information in both their personal and professional lives.

 
Preface
 
About the Author
 
Introduction
 
Chapter 1 Research, Biases in Thinking, and the Role of Theories
Why Research Matters

 
The Research Process: Humans Make Predictions

 
Heuristics and the Work of Kahneman and Tversky

 
Other Problems in Thinking

 
Doing Science as Tradition and Innovation

 
Research and the Value of Common Sense

 
Flexibility in Thinking

 
Theories: What They Are and Why They Matter

 
Making a Connection Between a Theory and a Good Research Question

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 2 Generating and Shaping Ideas: Tradition and Innovation
Overview

 
Ideas: Information Services, aka The Library

 
Ideas: Searching Effectively in the Library

 
Electronic Resources and Keywords

 
Keywords: The “Key” to Success

 
PsycINFO

 
Other Databases and Indexes in the Social Sciences

 
The Web and Peer Review

 
Particular Kinds of Articles

 
How Journals Differ: Issues Related to Quality

 
Open Access and Predatory Publishers

 
Publication Practices of Journals

 
Journal Articles Versus Book Chapters

 
Physically Obtaining an Article: A Closer Look at Databases

 
Summary of the Article Locator Search Process

 
Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Systems and World Catalog (WorldCat)

 
What to Do With Your Articles (Read More Than the Abstract!)

 
The Introduction

 
The Method Section

 
The Results Section

 
The Discussion Section: Conflicts and Gaps

 
Keeping Track: ILL, Mendeley, and RefWorks

 
Reasonable Questions and the Problem of Third Variables: Closing the Research Gap

 
Time Pressure and Timelines

 
Academic Fraud

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 3 Research Design Approaches and Issues: An Overview
Overview

 
Research Quality Affects Research Answers

 
What Research Can Tell You: The Continuum of Certainty

 
Correlation Versus Causation

 
Why Conduct Correlational Research?

 
The Language of Correlation and Causation

 
Correlational Research Approaches: Correlational and Quasi-experimental

 
Hallmarks of True Experimental Approaches

 
Differentiation of Independent and Dependent Variables

 
Reframing a Research Idea

 
Type I Versus Type II Error

 
Type II Errors: Sample Size, Power, and Effect Size

 
Internal Validity

 
Behavior of the Experimenter and Demand Characteristics

 
Behavior of the Participant: Role Attitude

 
Single- and Double-Blind Approaches to Research

 
Cover Stories

 
Pilot Tests and Manipulation Checks

 
Summary of Additional Threats to Internal Validity

 
External Validity and Ecological Validity

 
Where Research Takes Place

 
Where Qualitative Research Takes Place

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 4 Ethics and the Institutional Review Board (IRB) Process
Overview

 
What Is the IRB, and Why Does It Exist?

 
History of Ethical Oversight

 
The APA Code of Ethics

 
What Is Research? What Are Human Subjects?

 
IRB Membership and Duties

 
Levels of IRB Review

 
Components of the IRB Proposal

 
Informed Consent

 
Debriefing

 
Children as a Vulnerable Population: Implications for Research

 
Research With Children: Secondary Data Analysis

 
Deception and Its Alternatives

 
Ethics and Student Participation in Research: Alternatives to the Subject Pool

 
Offering Incentives in Research: Are Incentives Coercive?

 
Preparing an IRB Proposal

 
The IRB Training Modules

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 5 Measures and Survey Research Tools
Overview

 
The Concept of Measurement: Ideal Versus Real

 
The Purpose of Measures

 
Measurement Scale Types

 
Sensitivity of a Scale and Anchor Values

 
The Process of Identifying Measures: The Literature

 
Databases of Tests (PsycTESTS and HaPI)

 
Books of Measures

 
Department Resources and Professors

 
Catalogs of Measures and Fees Charged

 
Qualities of Measures: Reliability and Validity

 
The Importance of Computing Your Own Cronbach’s Alpha

 
Qualities of Measures: Validity

 
Length and Difficulty of Measures

 
Instructions for Scoring

 
Names of Measures and Social Desirability Concerns

 
Qualifications for Use

 
Developing Your Own Instrument

 
Scale Types and Flexibility in Answering Research Questions

 
The Order of Questions in a Survey

 
Online Survey Software Tools

 
Features of Online Survey Software Programs

 
Program Features

 
Google Docs Forms

 
Downloading Online Surveys into SPSS

 
Survey Appearance

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 6 Correlational and Qualitative Research
Overview

 
Correlational Research: General Characteristics

 
Questions Posed About the Sample

 
Drawbacks to Correlational Approaches

 
Correlational Design: Quasi-experimental Design (i.e., Questions About Groups)

 
Statistics Used in Correlational Designs

 
Qualitative Research

 
Qualitative Research and the Concept of Reflexivity

 
Acceptance of Qualitative Methodology in the Social and Behavioral Sciences

 
Qualitative Approaches to Research

 
How to Capture Behavior: Behavioral Categories

 
How Often and How Long to Observe

 
Calculation of Inter-rater Reliability (IRR)

 
Acceptable Values for Inter-rater Agreement

 
Participant and Nonparticipant Observation and Overt/Covert Observation

 
Ethnography: Extended Observation

 
Issues in Ethnography: Gaining Access

 
Initial Ethnographic Tours

 
Preserving Information

 
Grounded Theory

 
Phenomenology

 
Focus Groups

 
Interviews: Degrees of Structure

 
Recording or Not

 
Case Studies and Case Histories

 
Where Qualitative Meets Quantitative: Content Analysis

 
Summary of Steps in a Content Analysis

 
Computer-Assisted Qualitative Data Analysis Software (CAQDAS)

 
Qualitative Research and the Emotional Self: A Final Consideration

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 7 Experimental Approaches: Between Subjects Designs
Overview

 
Between Subjects Designs: What Are They?

 
Characteristics of Between Subjects Designs: Advantages and Disadvantages

 
Sensitivity of IV

 
More on Power, Sample Size, and Power Calculations

 
Number of IVs and Interaction Effects

 
Evaluating an Interaction by Hand

 
Common Types of Between Subjects Design

 
Matched Groups Design

 
Multiple Comparisons

 
Handling Error Variance

 
Summary of Between Subjects Design Considerations

 
Finding and Creating IVs (Scenarios; Visual Images; Movie Clips; Auditory Clips)

 
Existing Literature: Method Section

 
Visual Images: Manipulating an Image

 
Multiple Dependent Variables (DVs) in a Research Design

 
Factor Analysis: An Overview

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 8 Within, Mixed, Pre–Post Experimental, and Specialized Correlational Designs
Overview

 
Characteristics of Within Subjects Design: Advantages and Disadvantages

 
Types of Research Questions More Commonly Asked in Within Subjects Designs

 
Counterbalancing

 
Simple and Complex Within Subjects Designs

 
Adding Complexity to Within Subjects Designs

 
Mixed Designs

 
Pre–Post Designs: Characteristics

 
Types of Pre–Post Designs

 
Specialized Correlational Designs

 
Time-Series and Interrupted Time-Series Design

 
Strengths and Weaknesses of This Approach

 
When Is This Approach Used?

 
Real-World Challenges: Postoccupancy Evaluation (POE)

 
Longitudinal and Cross-Sectional Designs

 
Advantages and Disadvantages of the Longitudinal Approach

 
Advantages and Disadvantages of the Cross-Sectional Approach

 
Cohort-Sequential Design

 
Advantages of Using Multiple Methods

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 9 Recruiting Participants
Overview

 
Who Participates in Research: An Overview

 
The Subject Pool: The Workhorse of Social Science Research

 
The Drawbacks to Subject Pools: Concerns About Internal Validity

 
Limits on the Number of Participants Available From Unpaid Subject Pools

 
Keeping Track of Participants: Online Participant Management Systems

 
Practical Issues in Communicating About Recruiting

 
Research on Sensitive Topics and the Role of the IRB

 
Recruiting Off Campus

 
Using Your Personal Connections

 
Using Your Institution’s Connections

 
Bureaucracy

 
Vulnerable Populations in the Community

 
Physical Security Issues in Conducting Research off Campus

 
Service Learning Courses and Recruiting Participants: Opportunities and Complications

 
Conflicts of Interest and Multiple Relationships

 
Dustin’s Dozen: Tips for Collecting Data in the Field

 
Identifying Information

 
Other Sources of Participants: The Online Approach

 
Online Use of Adverts (Advertisements) Versus Snowball Samples

 
Ethical Issues in Online Environments: The Facebook Emotional Contagion Study

 
Sampling

 
Nonresponse Bias and Threats to Internal Validity

 
Nonresponse and Nonresponse Bias

 
Response Rates and Reporting Them

 
Incentives: Practical Issues

 
Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTURK): The World Awaits

 
Questions of Validity in Using Amazon MTURK

 
Online Paid Panels

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 10 Organizing Data and Analyzing Results
Overview

 
Paper and Online Surveys: An Overview

 
The Importance of Labeling

 
Labeling in a Data File and Deciding on a Coding System

 
Other Labeling Recommendations

 
Labeling Issues in Online Survey Software

 
Entering Individual Items Versus Item Totals

 
Backing Up Data

 
Dealing With Missing Data: Differing Points of View

 
Replacing Missing Data Through Single Value Imputation

 
Some Recommendations for Missing Data

 
Identifying Missing Data

 
Handling Out-of-Range Values

 
Handling Outliers

 
Going Fishing and Other Data Dredging Practices

 
Ethics, Cleaning Up, and Reporting Your Data: Final Comments

 
Preliminary Analyses

 
Significance Levels and p Values: What Are They?

 
Transforming and Selecting Data: Useful Commands in SPSS

 
Summary of Data Organization Steps

 
Evaluating Your Hypotheses: Where to Begin

 
Making Use of Free Response Items

 
Additional Aids: Online Calculators and Word Clouds

 
Other Statistical Software

 
Summary

 
 
Chapter 11 Writing and Presenting Your Research
Overview

 
Writing: One Section at a Time

 
Writing: Avoiding Plagiarism

 
The Writing Itself: Clear and Simple

 
The “Shape” of Your Paper

 
The Title of the Paper and Its Importance

 
The Abstract

 
The Introduction: Content

 
The Method Section

 
Writing About Results

 
Discussion

 
Nonsignificant Results: What Can You Say?

 
Statistical Versus Practical Significance

 
General Formatting Issues: Mastering APA Style

 
Presenting Numbers: The Short Story

 
Common Grammatical Mistakes

 
Creating Conference Presentations

 
Summary

 
Highly Recommended Papers

 
 
Appendices
 
Appendix A: Decision Tree for Statistical Analysis
 
Appendix B: Sample Informed Consent Document
 
Appendix C: Sample Debriefing Statement
 
Appendix D: Resource Guide to Commonly Used Measures
 
Appendix E: Commonly Used Analyze Functions in SPSS
 
Appendix F: Scale Types and Associated Statistical Analyses for Common Research Approaches
 
Glossary
 
References
 
Name Index
 
Subject Index

Supplements

Instructor Teaching Site

SAGE edge for Instructors supports teaching by making it easy to integrate quality content and create a rich learning environment for students.
?

  • Microsoft® Word® test bank is available, containing multiple choice, true/false, short answer, and essay questions for each chapter. The test bank provides you with a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity for editing any question and/or inserting your own personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding.
  • Editable, chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides offer complete flexibility for creating a multimedia presentation for the course.
  • Discussion questions help launch classroom interaction by prompting students to engage with the material and by reinforcing important content.
  • EXCLUSIVE! Access to full-text SAGE journal articles that have been carefully selected to support and expand on the concepts presented in each chapter.
    ?
    Video and website links appeal to students with different learning styles.
Student Study Site

    SAGE edge offers a robust online environment featuring an impressive array of tools and resources for review, study, and further exploration, keeping both instructors and students on the cutting edge of teaching and learning. SAGE edge content is open access and available on demand. Learning and teaching has never been easier!

    SAGE edge for Students
     provides a personalized approach to help students accomplish their coursework goals in an easy-to-use learning environment.

    • A customized online action plan includes tips and feedback on progress through the course and materials, which allows students to individualize their learning experience
    • Learning objectives reinforce the most important material
    • Mobile-friendly practice quizzes allow for independent assessment by students of their mastery of course material
    • Mobile-friendly eFlashcards strengthen understanding of key terms and concepts
    • Video and website links which appeals to different learning styles
    • EXCLUSIVE! access to SAGE journal articles that have been carefully selected to support and expand on the concepts presented in each chapter to encourage students to think critically.

    “While most research methods textbooks use little citation which suggests that much of the content is the author’s original thought, this author uses, in a masterful way, a variety of sources to teach each characteristic of the research process,”

    Charles Baker
    Delaware County Community College

    “The text does a great job of touching upon all relevant areas of applied research while presenting the information in a manner that is understandable to students first exposed to the research process.” 

    Michael J. Rovito
    University of Central Florida

    “[Key strengths of the text are] many good examples, interesting questions interspersed in each chapter, helpful guides to successful writing, interesting ideas to ponder, and up-to-date content on online subject pools.”

    Mark W. Dewalt
    Winthrop University

    “The text walks students through the logistics of actually running a study or experiment. It also deals with technology and the advantages and disadvantages of the technologies that students most rely on.” 

    Pauline S. Sawyers
    Oakwood University

    Devlin's text is an immensely practical and incredibly thorough resource on doing research. The eleven chapters cover the range of stages of research - from conception to operationalization, and from analysis to presentation. In this structure, Devlin does not steer away from the complexity of research towards some more assumedly accessible (but arguably simplistic) model. Instead, her writing tackles this complexity head on, and complements how the editing and design of the book coordinates examples, templates, prompts, definitions, and all manner of supplementary material to contextualize this organization of information. The result is not a dense text, but a comprehensive one (or thoroughly representative one, at least): a resource that should be ready to hand for anyone in virtually any academic field, or at any stage of experience - from undergrad to doctoral supervisor.

    Professor Kris Erickson
    Interdiscipline, Ryerson University
    March 17, 2017
    Key features
    KEY FEATURES:

    • Thorough coverage of research design and methods fundamentals includes an emphasis on the practical issues involved in producing research projects and reports.
    • Coverage of current technological applications, such as Qualtrics and Amazon Mechanical Turk, enables students to utilize the latest online tools for their research projects. 
    • Attention to the kinds of errors in thinking that undermine the research process helps students understand how basic human tendencies such as heuristics influence the research process.
    • A chapter on finding resources and using library databases helps students get started on locating materials for their research question.
    • Three types of questions in every chapter include Revisit and Respond, Try This Now, and Build Your Skills to promote student learning.
    • Glossary callouts and in-text definitions help students understand the terminology of research methods.

    Preview this book

    Sample Materials & Chapters

    Preface

    Chapter 1

    Chapter 5

    Chapter 9


    For instructors

    Select a Purchasing Option

    Electronic version
    Prices from
    $50.00*
    *180 day rental

    This title is also available on SAGE Knowledge, the ultimate social sciences online library. If your library doesn’t have access, ask your librarian to start a trial.