Apply the scientific method to the information included within the scenario and develop a null and a research hypothesis based on it.
According to the information in this scenario, the null hypothesis is the intervention will not affect a change in the students’ improvement to actively participate in discussions. My research hypothesis is intervention will improve students’ motivation to participate in discussions actively. The instructors goal is to improve students’ participation in discussions by intervention.
Using the hypotheses you have developed, compare the characteristics of the different experimental research designs discussed in the Skidmore (2008) article and choose the one that is most appropriate to adequately test your hypotheses.
The proper experimental design ensures that results are objective and valid. The specific questions that the experiment is intended to answer must be identified before experimenting. In Skidmore (2008), this article discusses the three experimental designs, Pretest-Posttest Control-Group Design, Posttest-Only Control Group Approach, and Solomon Four-Group design. The pretest-posttest control-group and posttest-only control group use randomization that uses the intervention as the effect. One group is given intervention, and the other group, none (Skidmore, 2008).
Solomon four-group design, the participants are randomly assigned to four different conditions. These interventions are with pre-test and post-test, pre-test and post-test with no intervention, intervention with post-test, post-test with no intervention, (Skidmore, 2008). I would suggest the pretest-posttest design be the best fit for this scenario because the participants were chosen randomly to the control and experimental groups.
Identify potential internal threats to validity and explain how you might mitigate these threats.
The potential internal threats to validity I found in this scenario is the small participates size. Increasing participant size in this scenario can also give greater power to detect differences.
Apply ethical principles to the proposed research and describe the implications of this type of research in terms of the population(s) and cultural consideration(s) represented in the sample(s) within the scenario.
One ethical principle that should be addressed is getting the approval from the school to conduct this research in this scenario. Once getting permission from the school, informed consent should be next from the participants. Implications of this research regarding population and cultural considerations should be important within the scenario. For us who do online courses know the struggles of being actively involved in discussions.
Online students face many challenges versus the classroom settings. Traditional classroom settings are interactive. You and your peers are verbally communicating amongst one another. Virtual students are hiding behind a screen with no verbal, one on one interaction. Online students communicate through emails. Researchers should take into consideration other methods of research (Henrich, Heine, & Norenzayan, 2010).
Henrich, J., Heine, S. J., & Norenzayan, A. (2010). Most people are not WEIRD. Nature, 466(7302), 29. doi: 10.1038/466029a.
Skidmore, S. (2008). Experimental design and some threats to experimental validity: A primer (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Southwest Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, February 6, 2008). Retrieved from the ERIC database in the Ashford University Library.