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Research Methods for the Behavioral Sciences

Research Methods for the Behavioral Sciences

Second Edition
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January 2016 | 688 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
The Second Edition of the award-winning Research Methods for the Behavioral Sciences employs a problem-focused approach that fully integrates the decision tree—from choosing a research design to conducting statistical analysis and communicating results. With a conversational, student-friendly writing style, Gregory J. Privitera shows how methods and analysis work together and enable the testing of hypotheses through use of the scientific method. Outstanding pedagogy, current examples, and robust resources empower students to approach their study and application of research methods with confidence.

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Section 1: Scientific Inquiry
Chapter 1: Introduction to Scientific Thinking
1.1 Science as a Method of Knowing  
1.2 The Scientific Method  
1.3 Other Methods of Knowing  
1.4 The Goals of Science  
1.5 Approaches in Acquiring Knowledge  
1.6 Distinguishing Science From Pseudoscience  
Chapter 2: Generating Testable Ideas
2.1 Generating Interesting and Novel Ideas  
2.2 Converting Ideas to Hypotheses and Theories  
2.3 Developing Your Idea: Deduction and Induction  
2.4 Performing a Literature Review  
2.5 Ethics in Focus: Giving Proper Credit  
2.6 The “3 Cs” of an Effective Literature Review  
2.7 Testing Your Idea: Confirmation and Disconfirmation  
2.8 Ethics in Focus: Publication Bias  
Chapter 3: Research Ethics
3.1 Ethics in Behavioral Research  
3.2 The Need for Ethics Committees in Research: A Historical Synopsis  
3.3 Ethics in Focus: Examples From Psychology  
3.4 Human Participant Research: IRBs and the APA Code of Conduct  
3.5 Ethics in Focus: Anonymity and Confidentiality  
3.6 Animal Subject Research: IACUCs and the APA Code of Conduct  
3.7 Additional Ethical Considerations: Scientific Integrity  
Section II: Defining and Measuring Variables, Selecting Samples, and Choosing an Appropriate Research Design
Chapter 4: Identifying Scientific Variables
4.1 Criteria for Defining and Measuring Variables  
4.2 Constructs and Operational Definitions  
4.3 Types of Variables  
4.4 Scales of Measurement  
4.5 Reliability of a Measurement  
4.6 Validity of a Measurement  
4.7. Selecting a Measurement Procedure  
4.8 Ethics in Focus: Replication as a Gauge for Fraud?  
4.9 SPSS in Focus: Entering and Coding Data  
Chapter 5: Sampling From Populations
5.1 Why Do Researchers Select Samples?  
5.2 Subjects, Participants, and Sampling Methods  
5.3 Methods of Sampling: Nonprobability Sampling  
5.4 Methods of Sampling: Probability Sampling  
5.5 Sampling Error and Standard Error of the Mean  
5.6 SPSS in Focus: Estimating the Standard Error of the Mean  
5.7 Potential Biases in Sampling  
5.8 Ethics in Focus: Participant Pools  
5.9 SPSS in Focus: Identifying New Populations Using the One-Sample t Test  
Chapter 6: Choosing a Research Design
6.1 Designing a Study to Answer a Question  
6.2 Categories of Research Design  
6.3 Internal and External Validity  
6.4 Demonstrating Cause in an Experiment  
6.5 Ethics in Focus: Beneficence and Random Assignment  
6.6 Threats to the Internal Validity of a Research Study  
6.7 Threats to the External Validity of a Research Study  
6.8 External Validity, Experimentation, and Realism  
6.9 A Final Thought on Validity and Choosing a Research Design  
Section III: Nonexperimental Research Designs
Chapter 7: Naturalistic, Qualitative, and Existing Data Research Designs
Naturalistic Observation  
7.1 An Overview of Naturalistic Observation  
7.2 The Research Setting: Natural and Contrived Settings  
7.3 Techniques for Conducting Naturalistic Observation  
7.4 Ethics in Focus: Influencing Participant Behavior  
Qualitative Designs  
7.5 An Overview of Qualitative Designs  
7.6 Qualitative Research Designs  
7.7 Ethics in Focus: Anonymity in Qualitative Research  
Existing Data Designs  
7.8 An Overview of Existing Data Designs  
7.9 Existing Data Designs  
7.10 Ethics in Focus: Existing Data and Experimenter Bias  
Chapter 8: Survey and Correlational Research Designs
Survey Designs  
8.1 An Overview of Survey Designs  
8.2 Types of Survey Items  
8.3 Rules for Writing Survey Items  
8.4 Administering Surveys  
8.5 Surveys, Sampling, and Nonresponse Bias  
8.6 Ethics in Focus: Handling and Administering Surveys  
Correlational Designs  
8.7 The Structure of Correlational Designs  
8.8 Describing the Relationship Between Variables  
8.9 Limitations in Interpretation  
8.10 Correlation, Regression, and Prediction  
8.11 SPSS in Focus: Correlation and Linear Regression  
Section IV: Quasi- Experimental and Experimental Research Designs
Chapter 9: Quasi-Experimental and Single-Case Experimental Designs
Quasi-Experimental Designs  
9.1 An Overview of Quasi-Experimental Designs  
9.2 Quasi-Experimental Design: One-Group Designs  
9.3 Quasi-Experimental Design: Nonequivalent Control Group Designs  
9.4 Quasi-Experimental Design: Time Series Designs  
9.5 Quasi-Experimental Design: Developmental Designs  
9.6 Ethics in Focus: Development and Aging  
Single-Case Experimental Designs  
9.7 An Overview of Single-Case Designs  
9.8 Single-Case Baseline-Phase Designs  
9.9 Validity, Stability, Magnitude, and Generality  
9.10 Ethics in Focus: The Ethics of Innovation  
Chapter 10: Between-Subjects Experimental Designs
10.1 Conducting Experiments: Between-Subjects Design  
10.2 Experimental Versus Control Group  
10.3 Manipulation and the Independent Variable  
10.4 Variability and the Independent Variable  
10.5 Ethics in Focus: The Accountability of Manipulation  
10.6 Comparing Two Independent Samples  
10.7 SPSS in Focus: Two-Independent-Sample t Test  
10.8 Comparing Two or More Independent Samples  
10.9 SPSS in Focus: One-Way Between-Subjects ANOVA  
10.10 Measuring the Dependent Variable  
10.11 Advantages and Disadvantages of the Between-Subjects Design  
Chapter 11: Within-Subjects Experimental Designs
11.1 Conducting Experiments: Within-Subjects Design  
11.2 Controlling Time-Related Factors  
11.3 Ethics in Focus: Minimizing Participant Fatigue  
11.4 Individual Differences and Variability  
11.5 Comparing Two Related Samples  
11.6 SPSS in Focus: Related-Samples t Test  
11.7 Comparing Two or More Related Samples  
11.8 SPSS in Focus: One-Way Within-Subjects ANOVA  
11.9 An Alternative to Pre-Post Designs: Solomon Four-Group Design  
11.10 Comparing Between-Subjects and Within-Subjects Designs  
Chapter 12: Factorial Experimental Designs
12.1 Testing Multiple Factors in the Same Experiment  
12.2 Selecting Samples for a Factorial Design in Experimentation  
12.3 Types of Factorial Designs  
12.4 Ethics in Focus: Participant Fatigue and Factorial Designs  
12.5 Main Effects and Interactions  
12.6 Identifying Main Effects and Interactions in a Graph  
12.7 Including Quasi-Independent Factors in an Experiment  
12.8 Reasons for Including Two or More Factors in an Experiment  
12.9 Higher-Order Factorial Designs  
12.10 SPSS in Focus: General Instructions for Conducting a Factorial ANOVA  
Section V: Analyzing, Intrepreting, and Communicating Research Data
Chapter 13: Analysis and Interpretation: Exposition of Data
13.1 Descriptive Statistics: Why Summarize Data?  
13.2 Frequency Distributions: Tables and Graphs  
13.3 Measures of Central Tendency  
13.4 Measures of Variability  
13.5 SPSS in Focus: Central Tendency and Variability  
13.6 Graphing Means and Correlations  
13.7 Using Correlation to Describe Reliability  
13.8 SPSS in Focus: Cronbach’s Alpha and Cohen’s Kappa  
13.9 Ethics in Focus: Deception Due to the Distortion of Data  
Chapter 14: Analysis and Interpretation: Making Decisions About Data
14.1 Inferential Statistics: What Are We Making Inferences About?  
14.2 Types of Error and Power  
14.3 Parametric Tests: Applying the Decision Tree  
14.4. Nonparametric Tests: Applying the Decision Tree  
14.5 SPSS in Focus: The Chi-Square Tests  
14.6 Effect Size: How Big Is an Effect in the Population?  
14.7 Estimation: What Are the Possible Values of a Parameter?  
14.8 Confidence Intervals, Significance, and Effect Size  
14.9 Issues for Interpretation: Precision and Certainty  
14.10 Ethics in Focus: Full Disclosure of Data  
Chapter 15: Communicating Research: Preparing Manuscripts, Posters, and Talks
15.1 Elements of Communication  
15.2 Writing a Manuscript: Writing Style and Language  
15.3 Elements of an APA-Style Manuscript  
15.4 Literature Reviews  
15.5 Reporting Observations in Qualitative Research  
15.6 Ethics in Focus: Credit and Authorship  
15.7 Presenting a Poster  
15.8 Giving a Professional Talk  


Instructor Teaching Site

SAGE edge for Instructors supports teaching by making it easy to integrate quality content and create a rich learning environment for students.

  • An author-created test bank provides a diverse range of 2,200+ pre-written questions and answers tied to learning objectives from the book, as well as the opportunity to edit any question and/or insert personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding
  • Editable, chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides offer complete flexibility for creating a multimedia presentation for the course
  • Sample course syllabi for semester and quarter courses provide suggested models for structuring one’s course
  • An author-created Instructor’s Manual provides chapter-by-chapter lecture suggestions aligned with learning objectives, as well as exercises (with answers included) to ease preparation for lectures, discussions and assignments
  • Additional data sets are structured by discipline and created by researchers who actively engage in research within each discipline.
  • SPSS in Focus Screencasts that accompany each SPSS in Focus section from the book provide step-by-step instructions
  • Answer keys for all problems featured in the book and in the SPSS Workbook assist in grading student work
  • EXCLUSIVE! Access to full-text SAGE journal articles have been carefully selected to support and expand on the concepts presented in each chapter to encourage students to think critically
  • Multimedia content includes videos that appeal to students with different learning styles
  • A Course cartridge provides easy LMS integration
Student Study Site

SAGE edge for Students provides a personalized approach to help students accomplish their coursework goals in an easy-to-use learning environment.

  • A customized online action plan includes tips and feedback on progress through the course and materials, allowing students to individualize their learning experience
  • Learning objectives reinforce the most important material
  • Mobile-friendly eFlashcards strengthen understanding of key terms and concepts
  • Web resources are included for further research and insights.
  • Multimedia content includes audio and video resources that appeal to students with different learning styles
  • EXCLUSIVE! Access to full-text SAGE journal articles that have been carefully selected to support and expand on the concepts presented in each chapter
  • SPSS in Focus Screencasts that accompany each SPSS in Focus section from the book show you how to use SPSS step-by-step
  • Additional data sets are structured by discipline and created by researchers who actively engage in research within each discipline

Very user friendly guidance into the world of research design and statistical analysis.

Dr Annie Newsam
Faculty of Life Science and Education, University of South Wales (Glamorgan)
January 29, 2018

Excellent text for students to follow and understand, a must for any social science student.

Miss sharron stillyards
health and social care, North Lindsey College
November 22, 2017

For any student who is moving to the next level of research, this text offers clear and concise detailed information. The sections are easy to follow and would enable any student to develop their approach when conducting any research project.

Miss Ella Malton
Department of Health & Social Studies, Grimsby Institute of HE And FE
June 28, 2017

The book provides very clear explanations and instruction for students how to design their research methodologies. Certainly it is going to beneficial for students. This book is coming on my reading list.

Mr Leszek Wypych
Bedfordshire Business School, Bedfordshire University
November 29, 2016

The book provides very clear explanations and instruction for students how to design their research methodologies. Certainly it is going to beneficial for students. This book is coming on my reading list.

Mr Leszek Wypych
Bedfordshire Business School, Bedfordshire University
November 11, 2016

Good book that contains useful information for students.

Dr Joseph Vella
Communications , University of Malta
October 20, 2016

The book offer concise information for the student. The text is relatively simple and therefore can be easily understood by student who have not undertaken research at this level. Highly recommended.

Mr Chris Palmer
School Of Health Sciences, University Of Nottingham
October 18, 2016

It was recommended for optional reading

Dr Olu A Awosoga
Health , University Of Lethbridge
October 3, 2016

An extraordinarily well structured book that supports students in getting an overview as well as deeper insights into the "how to" of research in behavioural sciences.

Dr Anna Schneider
Psychology , Hochschule Fresenius
September 22, 2016

Excellent book - ordered for the library

Mrs denise Burke Mac Giolla Ri
Humanities , AIT Athlone Institute of Technology
September 11, 2016

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