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Chapter 1: An Introduction To Statistics And Research Design

47 Questions
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The Two Branches of Statistics How to Transform Observations into Variables Three Types of Variables Introduction to Hypothesis Testing

Questions and Answers
  • 1. 
    What “branch” of statistics uses numerical observations and incorporates them into an organized and informative summary of the data?
    • A. 

      Sample

    • B. 

      Population

    • C. 

      Inferential

    • D. 

      Descriptive

  • 2. 
    This "branch" of statistics uses sample data to make inferences about the broader population.
    • A. 

      Descriptive

    • B. 

      Inferential

    • C. 

      Population

    • D. 

      Sample

  • 3. 
    Why are samples more commonly studied than populations?
    • A. 

      Because most researchers are lazy

    • B. 

      Because it is usually impossible to study an entire population

    • C. 

      Because populations can only be studied if the data is continuous

    • D. 

      Because samples are typically more accurate than populations

  • 4. 
    Which type of variable could theoretically include an infinite number of possible values between any two consecutive numbers?
    • A. 

      Ordinal

    • B. 

      Continuous

    • C. 

      Discrete

    • D. 

      Nominal

  • 5. 
    Measuring a person's height in inches would involve using a(n) ______________ variable.
    • A. 

      Ordinal

    • B. 

      Interval

    • C. 

      Nominal

    • D. 

      Ratio

  • 6. 
    Both ________ variables and __________ variables can be classified as scale observations.
    • A. 

      Nominal; ordinal

    • B. 

      Interval; ratio

    • C. 

      Ordinal; interval

    • D. 

      Discrete; continuous

  • 7. 
    Which of the following would make it difficult to determine if our independent variable truly had an effect on the dependent variable?
    • A. 

      If our independent variable had too many levels

    • B. 

      If our dependent variable was continuous

    • C. 

      If we were using a between-groups research design

    • D. 

      The presence of a confounding variable

  • 8. 
    A reliable measure:
    • A. 

      Measures what it was intended to measure.

    • B. 

      Predicts actual behavior.

    • C. 

      Is consistent.

    • D. 

      Co-varies with the independent variable.

  • 9. 
    If the results from a personality test are different when given to the same person on two different occasions the the test is:
    • A. 

      Not valid.

    • B. 

      Not reliable but probably valid.

    • C. 

      Not reliable.

    • D. 

      Neither reliable nor valid.

  • 10. 
    In a research study it is important to specify exactly how we will measure the variables that will be studied. In other words, it is important that we use:
    • A. 

      Operational definitions.

    • B. 

      Hypothesis testing.

    • C. 

      Specificity of measurement.

    • D. 

      Continuous observations.

  • 11. 
    If we made sure that each of our participants has an equal chance of being assigned to any condition in the experiment, we would be using:
    • A. 

      Operational definitions.

    • B. 

      A correlational study.

    • C. 

      Random assignment.

    • D. 

      Random selection.

  • 12. 
    Suppose we are interested in how people would rate three new flavors of ice cream. We decide to have participants try each of the three flavors and then rate each of them on a scale of 1 (hated it) to 10 (loved it). What type of research design is being used in this example?
    • A. 

      Between-groups

    • B. 

      Within-groups

    • C. 

      Correlation

    • D. 

      Independent groups

  • 13. 
    When your professor announces the average exam score for the class he is using:
    • A. 

      Descriptive statistics.

    • B. 

      Inferential statistics.

    • C. 

      Nominal variables.

    • D. 

      Ordinal variables.

  • 14. 
    When researchers use descriptive statistics, they are:
    • A. 

      Randomly assigning participants to conditions of an independent variable.

    • B. 

      Drawing conclusions about the relationship between variables.

    • C. 

      Using sample data to make general estimates about the larger population.

    • D. 

      Organizing, summarizing, and communicating a group of numerical observations.

  • 15. 
    A researcher is interested in the sleeping habits of first year college students. She selects 25 first year students from her college and asks them to complete a sleep survey. In this example the 25 students completing the survey would be the:
    • A. 

      Independent variable.

    • B. 

      Population.

    • C. 

      Sample.

    • D. 

      Dependent variable.

  • 16. 
    If your professor reports exam score averages to two decimal places - e.g., 77.65 - this would be considered a(n) _____________ observations.
    • A. 

      Continuous

    • B. 

      Ordinal

    • C. 

      Discrete

    • D. 

      Nominal

  • 17. 
    There are three different types of Olympic medals: gold, silver, and bronze. What kind of variable describes the different types of Olympic medals?
    • A. 

      Ratio

    • B. 

      Interval

    • C. 

      Ordinal

    • D. 

      Nominal

  • 18. 
    Using numbers to simply identify or label different objects or events involves:
    • A. 

      Nominal variables.

    • B. 

      Ordinal variables.

    • C. 

      Interval variables.

    • D. 

      Ratio variables.

  • 19. 
    A popular sports drink company sampled 20 people who drink its product regularly and found that they performed better during a physical test than those who do not drink the product regularly. What might be a possible confound in the study?
    • A. 

      The sample is small.

    • B. 

      It rained the day of the physical test.

    • C. 

      The company funding the test was biased.

    • D. 

      People who are regular sports drinkers may be more athletic than those who are not.

  • 20. 
    Suppose that, as part of a larger survey, we classify participants according to their classification in school. Our designations of freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior would be considered:
    • A. 

      Variables.

    • B. 

      Operational definitions.

    • C. 

      Levels or conditions.

    • D. 

      Confounds.

  • 21. 
    Psychologists studying infant memory want to determine at what age babies can remember specific events. An experimenter uses several puppets to demonstrate a series of actions while the infant watches. After a delay, the experimenter records how many of the actions the child imitates when playing with the puppets. The dependent variable is the:
    • A. 

      Activity level of the child.

    • B. 

      Type of puppet used by the experimenter.

    • C. 

      Number of imitated actions.

    • D. 

      Length of the experiment.

  • 22. 
    A between-groups design:
    • A. 

      Involves each participant participating in all levels of the experiment.

    • B. 

      Includes only one condition.

    • C. 

      Is sometimes referred to as a longitudinal design.

    • D. 

      Involves each participant experiencing only one level of the experiment.

  • 23. 
    Suppose a researcher randomly assigns participants to three groups and examines their ability to solve complex mathematical problems under conditions of no noise, continuous noise, or random noise. What type of research design is the researcher using?
    • A. 

      Correlational

    • B. 

      Repeated measures

    • C. 

      Within-groups

    • D. 

      Between-groups

  • 24. 
    If we were interested in studying the effect of child abuse on academic achievement we would probably use a ___________ study because of ethical issues involved in employing random assignment.
    • A. 

      Within-groups

    • B. 

      Between-groups

    • C. 

      Experimental

    • D. 

      Correlational

  • 25. 
    If a market research company studies the television viewing habits of 1,000 randomly selected families and uses the information to make inferences about the viewing habits of all families in the United States, they are utilizing:
    • A. 

      Descriptive statistics.

    • B. 

      A correlational research design.

    • C. 

      A within-groups research design.

    • D. 

      Inferential statistics.

  • 26. 
    The main difference between an interval variable and a ratio variable is that an interval variable:
    • A. 

      Does not have a true zero point.

    • B. 

      Has equal intervals between numbers.

    • C. 

      Does not preserve a rank order in the assignment of numbers.

    • D. 

      Is used only for placing participants into categories.

  • 27. 
    A _________ variable meets the criteria for either an interval variable or a ratio variable.
    • A. 

      Independent

    • B. 

      Scale

    • C. 

      Dependent

    • D. 

      Discrete

  • 28. 
    If we rated friendliness of store clerks on a scale from 1-5, the ratings would represent a(n) ___________ variable.
    • A. 

      Ratio

    • B. 

      Nominal

    • C. 

      Interval

    • D. 

      Ordinal

  • 29. 
    A variable shows reliability when:
    • A. 

      It is accepted in the Encyclopedia of Psychology.

    • B. 

      Enough experimenters decide to use it in their research.

    • C. 

      The same results are obtained each time it is measured.

    • D. 

      Other researchers demonstrate that it does measure what it is supposed to measure.

  • 30. 
    One reason for doing correlational research is to evaluate the relationship between two variables that are related to each other, either positively or negatively. However, a correlation is vulnerable to what variable, which systematically co-varies with the variable of interest?
    • A. 

      Noise

    • B. 

      Extraneous

    • C. 

      Confounding

    • D. 

      Dependent

  • 31. 
    The numbers on athletes' uniforms are an example of a(n) _________ variable.
    • A. 

      Ordinal

    • B. 

      Nominal

    • C. 

      Interval

    • D. 

      Ratio

  • 32. 
    In the famous Zimbardo prison study, Stanford students were assigned to be either a prisoner or a guard so that the experimenters could examine prison life behaviors and interactions. The experiment was intended to run for two weeks but was stopped after only six days because of the brutal behavior of the guards and the depression of the prisoners. What was the independent variable in this study?
    • A. 

      The length of the study

    • B. 

      The participants' behavior

    • C. 

      The Stanford campus

    • D. 

      The role of prisoner or guard

  • 33. 
    Suppose that a student taking a psychology course proposes to test the hypothesis that “playing violent video games leads men to have negative attitudes toward women.” After being asked to operationally define her variables the student proposes the following four hypotheses. Which of the following hypotheses include the best operational definitions for this study?
    • A. 

      Playing video games for more than 3 hours a day causes college-aged men to have negative feelings toward women.

    • B. 

      Playing the video game Destroyer causes men to have worse attitudes toward women than if they play a less violent video game.

    • C. 

      Playing video games that advocate violence leads men to have bad feelings toward women.

    • D. 

      Playing the video game Destroyer for 2 hours a day for one week will cause men to have negative attitudes toward women as measured by the Hostility Toward Women scale.

  • 34. 
    Lawrence is testing a series of new commercials on a sample audience for an advertising company. He wants to see which of 10 commercials receives the highest rating from audiences but he wants to use a different audience for each commercial. What design should Lawrence use?
    • A. 

      Quasi-experiment

    • B. 

      Between-groups design

    • C. 

      Correlation

    • D. 

      Within-groups design

  • 35. 
    Statistical methods that use sample data to draw inferences about larger populations are called:
    • A. 

      Population statistics.

    • B. 

      Sample statistics.

    • C. 

      Descriptive statistics.

    • D. 

      Inferential statistics.

  • 36. 
    A subset of data drawn from the larger population of interest is a:
    • A. 

      Variable.

    • B. 

      Population.

    • C. 

      Continuous observation.

    • D. 

      Sample.

  • 37. 
    A measure is said to be valid if:
    • A. 

      If the specific procedures used in the measure are identified.

    • B. 

      Is low in measurement error.

    • C. 

      Its results are consistent.

    • D. 

      Measures what it is supposed to measure.

  • 38. 
    In a within-groups design:
    • A. 

      Random assignment is always used.

    • B. 

      Each condition contains different people.

    • C. 

      Participants are randomly assigned to conditions.

    • D. 

      Participants experience all conditions of the study.

  • 39. 
    What is the primary difference between descriptive and inferential statistics?
    • A. 

      Inferential statistics typically have greater reliability than descriptive statistics.

    • B. 

      Descriptive statistics are better able to control confounding variables than inferential statistics

    • C. 

      Inferential statistics typically involve larger amounts of data than descriptive statistics.

    • D. 

      Inferential statistics allow researchers to draw conclusions about populations while descriptive statistics simply organize and summarize data.

  • 40. 
    Random assignment in experiments is important because:
    • A. 

      It helps to control confounding variables.

    • B. 

      It ensures that the measures used are valid.

    • C. 

      It eliminates the problem of dependent variables.

    • D. 

      It ensures that the measures used are reliable.

  • 41. 
    If a psychologist ranks the patients on a hospital ward in terms of the severity of their illness - that is, the patient with the worst prognosis is given a rank of 1, the patient with the second worst prognosis is given a rank of 2, and so on - she is using a(n) ________ variable.
    • A. 

      Ratio

    • B. 

      Ordinal

    • C. 

      Interval

    • D. 

      Nominal

  • 42. 
    The total number of Olympic medals won by a country is an example of which kind of variable?
    • A. 

      Ratio

    • B. 

      Ordinal

    • C. 

      Interval

    • D. 

      Nominal

  • 43. 
    The variable that is measured to determine if the independent variable had an effect is referred as the _________ variable.
    • A. 

      Change

    • B. 

      Operational

    • C. 

      Dependent

    • D. 

      Confounding

  • 44. 
    If we believe we are creating a measure of intelligence but in fact it measures creativity, we would say that our measure lacks:
    • A. 

      Consistency.

    • B. 

      Levels.

    • C. 

      Reliability.

    • D. 

      Validity.

  • 45. 
    Suppose students are randomly assigned to either get positive feedback or not get positive feedback for their performance on daily quizzes and we measured their attitudes toward the class at the end of the semester. What is the independent variable in this study?
    • A. 

      The students

    • B. 

      Performance on the quizzes

    • C. 

      Their attitude toward the class

    • D. 

      Getting positive feedback or not getting positive feedback

  • 46. 
    _________ studies are useful for simply establishing an association between variables but do not provide information regarding cause and effect.
    • A. 

      Between-groups

    • B. 

      Within-groups

    • C. 

      Experimental

    • D. 

      Correlational

  • 47. 
    College students at 20 campuses around the country were polled to find out how many students own MP3 players. This small representative group of students is called a:
    • A. 

      Mode.

    • B. 

      Population.

    • C. 

      Median.

    • D. 

      Sample.

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