I will provide you with a research question that you will use to write a short research report. (Note, you
MUST use the question I provide. Failure to use the provided question will result in a grade of 0 for the
paper.) Using the skills you have learned from class you should identify an effective method for answering
the research question (e.g., an experiment or a survey). You should then describe the specific fashion in
which you would design a study to answer the research question, including conceptual and operational
definitions of the variables, the subject population, the procedures you would follow, and the statistical test
you would use. Keep the paper focused on the specific question – do not get distracted by related issues
that are not specifically a part of the assigned question (e.g., whether there are gender differences when
the research question does not specifically mention them). The paper MUST be arranged in the following
fashion with the headings specified (i.e., method, sampling, key variables, analysis)Your Name
Your assigned research question (re-type it on assignment—remember, it must match the one you were
Write the RESEARCH (i.e., alternative) hypothesis, which should be directional (DO NOT WRITE THE
Section 1: METHOD: Explain which method you would use to examine the question (e.g., experiment or a
survey), and why that method is most appropriate for the specific question. Your explanation should specify
the advantages of using the method you choose over others, and/or specific constraints (e.g., feasibility)
that compel you to use one method instead of another. Consider the ethical implications of your research.
Acknowledge any limitations. Max: 300 words.
For all topics, your method choice should be either an experiment or a survey. As I’ve discussed in class,
there are many ways one might legitimately design a study for a given topic–the point is for you to justify
your choice. Note that under no circumstances should you propose a content/interaction analysis or some
version of a qualitative study!
Section 2: SAMPLING: Explain your sampling procedure, including who will be in the sample, where your
participants will come from, how many participants will be included, and how they will be selected. Define
the population of interest (e.g., all people in the United States of a specific age or characteristic) and
identify the specific sample type (e.g., a convenience sample of University of Arizona undergraduates).
Explain why the sample is appropriate (e.g., is it representative of the population to which you want to
generalize?) and what constraints make it less than perfect. Acknowledge limitations in the sample. Max:
Section 3: KEY VARIABLES: Say explicitly which variables are being examined—each student’s research
question contains two variables so you must describe both in this section. Provide conceptual and
operational definitions of each (and you can find these explained in Chapter 4 of your text) and why you
think the variables should be related in the manner stated in your hypothesis. These definitions should be
clear and explicit. Providing materials like an exact replica of questionnaire items or experimental stimuli
will be rewarded (e.g., describe the specifics of experimental stimuli, and so on, if applicable). You are
encouraged to do some research to find out if others have already measured your variable, and you may
use an existing measure in your paper if it fits your research question and hypothesis. Materials like
questionnaire items are additional to this word limit and should be included as an Appendix (labeled and
referred to in your narrative, e.g., “See Appendix A”). Your goal is to help the reader understand exactly
how you generate NUMBERS in order to do the statistical analysis. Max: 400 words.
Section 4: ANALYSIS: Describe which statistical test(s) would be used, and provide example data (e.g.,
means, correlations, a graph, a table, etc.) that reflect your expectation of what you would find assuming
you reject the null hypothesis. It is not necessary to show complete calculations with fake raw data—the
goal here is to demonstrate your understanding of what the data would look like, how the data would be
analyzed, and what the analysis might show in order to reject the null hypothesis. For example, if your
hypothesis were “Communication undergraduates have higher intelligence than sociology undergraduates,”
you would provide two means on the scale of the intelligence variable identified in the previous section
(with a higher mean for the communication undergrads), confidence interval, degrees of freedom, and so
on. Again, you do not need to supply fake raw data (i.e., scores for each fictional person in your study).
Max 200 words (plus possibly graphs/tables of numbers). TO REITERATE: YOU WILL NOT COLLECT
ACTUAL DATA FOR THIS PAPER! AND I REALLY DON’T LIKE ALL CAPS BECAUSE THEY ARE
PAINFUL TO THE EYE, BUT IT SEEMS WARRANTED HERE!Formatting Instructions: The paper should be typed, double-spaced with 1” margins all around. Standard
grammar, spelling, and presentation expectations apply. The maximum number of words is a MAXIMUM.
You can check this easily with the “word count” feature (under “tools” in the file menu) in MS-Word. Other
applications have similar tools. We’ll use it to check so you should use it to! (By the way, you may be able
to achieve a top grade using significantly fewer words.) Should you provide citations in your paper, you
must use APA format. There are many “crib sheets” online that you may use as guides (e.g.,The Purdue
Owl APA website). Failure to follow these instructions will significantly worsen your grade.