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The Wild Act Of Texting And Walking: A Review Study

866 words - 4 pages

Since the invention of the cell phone, many have stated that the use of these mobile devices has caused distraction. Now, with the addition of texting, many have claimed that cellular phones are even more of a distraction than they were before. This is what a group of researchers at the University of Queensland strived to point out in their experiment. Gathering twenty-six volunteers, the researchers had each person walk a straight line of nine meters. They tested these same individuals without distractions, while reading a message on their phone, and while trying to send a text message. This group then remarkably claimed that texting was proven to cause major distraction and when combined with the task of walking leads to unevenness, slow pace, poor posture, and terrible balance (Winograd, 2014). However, this claim is not credible because of a bias sample and the introduction of a confirmation bias by the reporter caused by assuming correlation equals causation.
The first red flag in this study happens to be shown in the sample. First of all, the sample was only of twenty-six people. This is a small sample size, which can make it very hard to represent the entire population. Also, these people were volunteers. Although this is helpful to the researchers, this can introduce a bias because these people may be different than normal people. Maybe they were more willing to participate in such studies. However, most likely, these people were those that were convenient. In other words, they were those that were readily available and not chosen at random. A random sample is ideal in these kinds of experiment because they allow for one to make a generalization of the target population. However, because the sample was most likely not random, this could cause a bias because the subjects only represent a small portion of the population, especially if they all came from the same area. The author also fails to explain the dynamics of this sample. There is no information on the age, the ratio of males to females, etc. Because of the combination of a small sample size and the lack of information on the people involved in the study, a bias sample is introduced. In other words, this sample is most likely not a representation of the entire population. Thus, the results obtained from this experiment cannot be justifiably used to generalize about the entire population, as was done in this article.
Not only does the researchers seem to prove that texting causes distraction, but the author of the article chimes in. Winograd (2014) begins to...

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