Application: Conducting Time Series Research
Professional counselors are often asked to provide data to substantiate their work. For example,
insurance companies often limit professional counselors to a certain number of sessions and then require rationale for any extension of services. In order to provide rationale, counselors must have data that is valid and reliable. One manner in which counselors can tackle this issue is to approach the counseling process from a research framework and develop a systematic process of data
collection. Time series research designs can be easily implemented by an
individual counselor and can provide the research framework for addressing the
issue of counselor accountability.
In this Application, you consider the types of time series designs, the steps involved in conducting time series research, and how to analyze the associated data. You review a set of data and determine
appropriate time series methodology for a proposed research question. Through these experiences, you will develop an understanding of how time series research can be applied to everyday practice.
The assignment: (2–3 pages)
Imagine that you are a counselor working with a child who is having some behavioral problems at her elementary school. As a scholar practitioner, you approach your work with her from an empirical
standpoint and want to measure the effectiveness of your work. As such, you pose the following research question: "What impact does a designed intervention have in reducing off-task behavior, physical aggression, and verbal aggression for the identified child?"
For the purposes of this research, the target behaviors for intervention are as
1. Off-task – failure to maintain eye contact with
task at hand for more than 3 consecutive seconds
2. Physical Aggression – hitting/pushing/kicking
peers/teachers, throwing objects
3. Verbal Aggression - threatening,
Consider the following observation report:
During the first observation period, which was conducted on Monday (in math class) between 11:20 and 11:30, 10-minute, 10-second, partial interval recording was used to assess the frequency of
off-task behaviors, physical aggression, and verbal aggression. Kaya was observed to be off-task 12% of the intervals observed, engaged in physical aggression 0% of the intervals observed, and engaged in verbal aggression 2% of the intervals observed. During the second observation (during recess), which was conducted on Wednesday from 9:00 to 9:30, Kaya was observed to be off-task 15% of the intervals observed, engaged in physical aggression 20% of the intervals observed, and engaged in verbal
aggression 3% of the intervals observed. Kaya was also observed on Friday from 10:30 to 10:40
during a group activity. Kaya was observed to be off-task 20% of the intervals observed, was observed to engage in physical aggression 7% of the intervals observed, and was observed to engage in verbal aggression 10% of the intervals observed.
Based on the above data, you determine that you must
design a behavioral intervention for Kaya and determine if it is successful. As
you begin the process of investigating your research question:
- Briefly describe a time series design that you would
use to investigate the impact of your intervention, and explain how you would
collect and record the additional data. Be specific.
- Select a method for graphically representing the
provided data. Use the method to create a graph.
- Analyze the data and provide a narrative description
of your analysis.