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Applied Research Questions

Prepare written responses to the following questions.

- What are the similarities between descriptive and inferential statistics? What are the differences? When should you use descriptive and inferential statistics?

- What are the similarities between single-case and small-N research designs? What are the differences? When should you use single-case and small-N research designs?

- What are true experiments? How are threats to internal validity controlled by true experiments? How are they different from experimental designs?

- What are quasi-experimental designs? Why are they important? How are they different from experimental designs?

Solution Preview

- What are the similarities between descriptive and inferential statistics? What are the differences? When should you use descriptive and inferential statistics?

There are two major similarities between descriptive and inferential statistics, the first is that they both use the same set of numeric values or information to make a prediction about a given study group. The second similarity between the two is that they both reveal patterns about a given study group. This means that they are actually closely related. However, the differences between descriptive and inferential statistics are substantial when one considers the applicability of data. The descriptive statistics uses variables and distributions in order to come to a conclusion about a given group and the results can only be applied to that group. Conversely inferential statistics use several methods such as experiments, probability and population, sampling, and matching. Descriptive statistics should be used when making a specific assessment of a particular group or population and only that group or population. Inferential statistics should be used when making a generalization or inference about a particular group or population and beyond. Inferential statistics make a prediction about a particular group. An example of using descriptive statistics would be if we tested medication on a specific population group and the medication was successful. The only thing which can be said is that the medication was helpful to the group studied because we have no other data to support its use outside of the study group. However inferential statistics would take the same medication and apply several methods to gain data. The data would indicate that it might be successful on other populations not tested because of the reliability of the information gained through ...

Solution Summary

The solution compares descriptive and inferential statistics as well as single-case and small-N research designs before explaining what true and quasi-experiments are in 1130 words.

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