Describe the design of your study, stating clearly which variables in the study are (i) dependent or criterion variables (ii) independent or predictor variables.
The study by Sare and Mehtap was about the change in attitude to mathematics of 7th grade students when cartoons were used in teaching integer. The experiment were conducted on 61 7th grade students from two different departments of a primary school. The students were separated into the experimental group and the control group with 30 and 31 students respectively. Participants were asked to complete the “Mathematics Attitude Scale” (MAS) and took part in the mathematics classes of 6 weeks using either a social learning environment involving cartoons or teacher-centered activities without the use of cartoons to learn about integers. The MAS test was re-applied to all participants upon completion of the class.
The independent variable was whether cartoons were involved in the lesson which students learned about integers. The dependent variable was the scores of students from the “Mathematics Attitude Scale” (MAS).
Briefly describe why your chosen study cannot be classified as a true experiment. How would you best classify the study?
To be classified as a true experiment, a study must include manipulation of the independent variable, measurement of the dependent variable and random allocation of participants to conditions. The present study cannot be classified as a true experiment because the participants were not randomly allocated. Participants were from pre-set classes from the school and measurements were taken from pre- and post- intervention. Therefore, this study would be best classified as a quasi-experiment.
Identify threats to the internal validity of the design and explain how much threats could influence the conclusion of the study.
There were several threats to internal validity of the design in this study. Firstly, the sampling size was too small and there were unequal number of male and female participants in both experimental and control groups. Also, as this study was a quasi-experiment, there were no random allocation for the participants. These can cause a threat of selection bias such that the initial difference in the participants may affect the result of the study and make it unreliable. Moreover, though in the article it said that the mathematics ability of both groups of students were mediocre and similar, there was no standards to make sure that all the subjects were identical apart from the independent variable. This can cause a threat of history and further affect the reliability of the study.
Secondly, within the experimental group, 5 participants were selected by the researchers using a purposeful sampling method. They were considered most suitable for the propose of the research and could represent the opinions of the experimental group. Purposeful sampling method is where the researchers choose whom to be included in the sample based on their own...