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    Research and Design

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    A pro-life group wanted to test the effectiveness of an antiabortion commercial. Two random samples, each of 250 respondents, were recruited in Atlanta, Georgia. One group was shown the antiabortion commercial. Then, attitudes toward abortion were measured for respondents in both groups.

    What were the independent and dependent variables in this experiment?

    What type of research design was used?

    What are the potential threats to internal and external validity in this experiment?

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    Solution Preview

    Please see response attached, which is also presented below. I hope this helps and take care.

    RESPONSE:

    Scenario:

    A pro-life group wanted to test the effectiveness of an antiabortion commercial. Two random samples, each of 250 respondents, were recruited in Atlanta, Georgia. One group was shown the antiabortion commercial. Then, attitudes toward abortion were measured for respondents in both groups.

    1. What were the independent and dependent variables in this experiment?

    A: Independent Variable = Antiabortion commercial
    A: Dependent Variable = Attitudes toward abortion

    Why?

    A variable that you believe might influence your outcome measure is the independent variable (i.e., in this experiment the researcher believes that the antiabortion commercial might influence the outcome measure (i.e., attitudes of the viewers). An independent variable (i.e., antiabortion commercial) is a hypothesized cause or influence on a dependent variable (i.e., attitudes toward abortion). One way to distinguish these variables is to ask yourself what you are want to learn from this research. The dependent variable is a variable you are trying to predict. Any variable that you are using to make those predictions is an independent variable.

    2. What type of research design was used?

    A: Experimental Design - Random group

    Why?

    This design attempts to insure similarity of the groups before treatment begins. Since it is difficult to have exactly similar subjects in each of two groups (unless you separate identical twins), the design works toward a guarantee of comparability between groups by assigning subjects to groups at random. If the researcher does this there is likely to be reasonable comparability between the two groups. ...

    Solution Summary

    In relation to the given experiment, this solution identifies the independent and dependent variables in the experiment, the type of research design used, and the potential threats to internal and external validity in this experiment.

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