Statistics general questions

Feb 10th, 2014
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1. Describe the advantages and disadvantages of quasi-experiments? What is the fundamental weakness of a quasi-experimental design? Why is it a weakness? Does its weakness always matter? 

2. If you randomly assign participants to groups, can you assume the groups are equivalent at the beginning of the study? At the end? Why or why not? If you cannot assume equivalence at either end, what can you do? Please explain. 

3. Explain and give examples of how the particular outcomes of a study can suggest if a particular threat is likely to have been present. 

4. Describe each of the following types of designs, explain its logic, and why the design does or does not address the selection threats discussed in Chapter 7 of Trochim and Donnelly (2006): 

a. Non-equivalent control group pretest only

b. Non-equivalent control group pretest/posttest

c. Cross-sectional

d. Regression-Discontinuity

5. Why are quasi-experimental designs used more often than experimental designs? 

6. One conclusion you might reach (hint) after completing the readings for this assignment is that there are no bad designs, only bad design choices (and implementations). State a research question for which a single-group post-test only design can yield relatively unambiguous findings.

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