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EDPSY 505 Exam #1

Spring 2007


Name: ______________________

EDPSY 505 Exam #1


Directions: You have until Wednesday (3/21) at 4:00 to complete this exam by yourself. A hardcopy of the exam must be brought to class. Late exams will be penalized 10% per day.

Section 1: Multiple Choice (40 points)


1. To be concerned with ontology is to study:  

  1. reading

  2. what exists

  3. ethical decisions

  4. correlations

2. Epistemology is the branch of philosophy that deals with:



  1. the nature of ethics

  2. the nature of knowledge

  3. the nature of existence

  4. the nature of beauty

3. A paradigm that emphasizes the existence of a perfectly knowable reality is:



  1. Positivism

  2. Postpositivism

  3. Critical theory

  4. Constructivism

4. A paradigm that emphasizes historical, political, ethnic, and power relations is:



  1. Positivism

  2. Postpositivism

  3. Critical theory

  4. Constructivism

5. A major difficulty with knowledge based on personal sensory experience is that it:

A) is difficult to obtain

B) is incomplete

C) requires training

D) is always distorted


6. Knowledge arrived at by consensus or majority agreement:

A) is the most trustworthy of all types of knowledge

B) is to be avoided

C) takes too long to obtain

D) is often in error
7. An investigator wishes to determine how much coverage current high school history texts give to the contributions of African Americans to our history. She should conduct:

A) historical research

B) case studies

C) content analysis

D) experimental research
8. Mixed-method research refers to use of both:

A) Experimental and correlational methods

B) Quantitative and qualitative methods

C) Description and intervention

D) Group and single subject designs
9. Which of the following factors should not influence the decision when one is selecting a topic or problem for research?

A) Will solution of the problem advance knowledge in my field?

B) Will I be able to prove that my previously held beliefs are true?

C) Will the study lead to the development of other investigations?

D) Is the topic or problem amenable to research?
10. Operational definitions are encouraged in research in order to:

A) conform to the requirement of statistical analysis

B) increase the probability that experiments will succeed

C) make terms used in a study as explicit as possible

D) make educational research more easily understood by laypersons
11. Which of the following would be the least legitimate reason for conducting research on methods of teaching French?

A) You want to test certain deductions derived from a theory of language instruction.

B) Your school needs to evaluate its present French teaching methods.

C) You know in your own mind which method of teaching French is best, but lack empirical evidence of its superiority.

D) There are contradictions and inconsistencies in the results of previous research.
12. Which of the following statements can be checked by means of scientific inquiry?

A) All high schools should teach driver education.

B) Driver education is more important than drug abuse education.

C) Driver education is an ideal subject for all students to take.

D) The accident rate of driver education graduates is lower than the accident rate of those who have not had driver education.
13. "Students taught first aid by programmed instruction will achieve at a higher level than those taught first aid by the traditional method." The independent variable in this hypothesis is:

A) students

B) level of achievement

C) programmed instruction

D) method of instruction
14. In the example in question 9, the dependent variable is:

A) students

B) level of achievement

C) programmed instruction

D) method of instruction
15. Statements or predictions that are tested by collecting and analyzing objective evidence are called:

A) assumptions

B) indicators

C) hypotheses

D) premises
16. A research report states that Group A was exposed to a new teaching method and Group B was exposed to a traditional method. At the end of a four-month period, each group was given the same achievement test. Group A had a mean score that was higher than the mean score for Group B. The dependent variable in this study was the:

A) achievement scores of the students

B) motivation of the students

C) type of teaching

D) length of the period of instruction
17. Which of the following is likely to be of greatest value in formulating hypotheses for a scientific investigation?

A) A high level of emotional involvement in the research problem

B) A rigorous statistical design

C) Clear indication of the variables involved

D) A problem statement that is broad in scope
18. The dependent variable is so called because:

A) scores on this variable are hypothesized to depend on, and vary with, the value of the independent variable

B) the outcome of an experiment is hypothesized to depend on the effect that this variable has on the independent variable

C) scores on this variable can be expected not to vary in an experiment

D) scores on this variable depend on how they are manipulated by the researcher

19. Characteristics of persons or things that can assume different values are called:

A) distributions

B) observations

C) data

D) variables


20. A manipulated variable is one that:

A) uses equipment

B) requires subjects to arrange materials

C) is arranged by the researcher

D) makes a study hard to interpret
21. A moderator variable is one that

A) makes a relationship meaningless

B) qualifies the application of a relationship

C) weakens the strength of a relationship

D) provides an alternative explanation for a relationship
22. A researcher who decides to deceive participants in a study should:

A) determine that the study cannot be done without deception

B) argue convincingly that the importance of the study justifies deception

C) undeceive participants as soon as possible

D) all of the above
23. Whether or not a given study has the possibility of causing harm to participants:

A) can be determined by examining the pertinent legal documents

B) must be determined by a review board established by the sponsoring institution

C) depends on whether or not any experimentation is involved

D) depends on the researcher's definition of harm
24. Confidentiality requires that:

A) it be impossible to connect data to individuals

B) all data be collected anonymously

C) access to collected data be limited to research staff

D) participants not be asked for personal information
25. Informed consent to serve as a subject in research requires signing a document that states:

A) the purpose of the study

B) that the subject may end participation at any time

C) the probable risks involved

D) all of the above
26. The first step in selecting a sample should be to:

A) define the population

B) decide how to stratify the population

C) compile a list of the population

D) determine how to randomize
27. Generalizing research findings from a sample to the population is most likely to be justifiable when:

A) a small systematic sample is used

B) cluster sampling is used in a large, heterogeneous population

C) the null hypothesis is confirmed, regardless of the sampling procedures used

D) a large random sample is used
28. A research worker plans to evaluate high school students' reactions to a new policy on closed campus stations. He locates himself near the office of the dean, where he interviews every fourth student who visits the dean. He eventually secures data from 100 interviews and publishes his findings as the "Reactions of high school students to a new policy for a closed campus." What may be wrong with this approach?

A) Too small a sample

B) Inadequately defined problem

C) Inadequate techniques of analysis

D) Biased sample
29. The most important consideration in selecting a sample is that the sample be:

A) selected from the population by means of a table of random numbers

B) made up of a large number of subjects

C) representative of the population

D) selected from a large number of individuals or elements
30. The term "external validity" includes:

A) population generalizability and ecological generalizability

B) population generalizability and instrument validity

C) internal validity and instrument validity

D) internal validity and ecological generalizability
31. Use of a volunteer sample is generally to be avoided because:

A) volunteers are hard to get

B) they are unlikely to be representative of the intended population

C) they are difficult to stratify

D) replication is difficult
32. Which of the following is the best synonym for validity?

A) Consistency

B) Feasibility

C) Truthfulness

D) Economy
33. Which of the following is the best synonym for reliability?

A) Consistency

B) Usefulness

C) Truthfulness

D) Economy
34. Validity can be assessed by finding the correlation between scores on:

A) a test and some independent, widely accepted measure of that variable

B) one form of a test and another form of that test

C) the even-numbered items on a test and the odd-numbered items on that test

D) two administrations of the same test.
35. An arithmetic test is given twice within a few days to a student. The highest possible score is 40. He receives a score of 35 the first time and a score of 18 the second time. If similarly varying results are obtained with other students, the test is probably:

A) lacking in relevance

B) not sufficiently comprehensive

C) too difficult

D) unreliable
36. Content-related evidence of validity would be provided by:

A) giving a math test on Monday and again on Friday

B) having experts review the test

C) obtaining scores on the even- and odd-numbered items on the test

D) having two scorers independently score the test
37. Which of the following is a way to assess the predictive validity of an algebra test?

A) Correlate test scores with teacher ratings in algebra

B) Correlate test scores with success as an engineer

C) Correlate test scores with algebra grades

D) Correlate test scores with scores on algebra homework assignments
38. Which of the following is the best way to control for the unwanted influence of maturation processes in an experiment?

A) Increase the sample size for the experiment

B) Use a pretest as well as a posttest

C) Use a control group

D) Use subjects who have stabilized with regard to maturational level.
39. Subjects performing well merely because they are being observed (and not necessarily because of any effect of treatment) are considered to be under the influence of:

A) the Hawthorne effect

B) the novelty effect

C) the halo effect

D) none of the above.

40. A threat to internal validity is the same as:

A) bias on the part of the researcher

B) an alternative causal explanation of results

C) a limitation on the generalizability of results

D) poor internal consistency of scores




Section 2: Definitions (10 Points)



Directions: Below are a number of terms we have studied. Define each with a sentence or two in the space provided. Each definition is worth 2 points.


Internal validity

External validity

Target population

Negative correlation

Criterion referenced


Section 3: Brief Response (10 points)


Directions: Provide an answer to each question in the space provided. Each response is worth 2 points.
1. Choose two of the philosophical positions from the Guba & Lincoln chapter, and compare and contrast their ontological, epistemological and methodological positions.

2. Studies often utilize volunteers how does the use of volunteers affect population validity?

3. Why do studies with good internal validity often have poor external validity? Give an example of a situation where enhancing internal validity might impair external validity.

4. Describe 5 elements that are required for informed consent with human participants.

5. A researcher is interested in the relationship between language delays and problem behaviors. Noting a positive correlation between the two, he believes that language delays cause problem behaviors. What error is he making?
Section 4: Extended Response (40 points)
Directions: Select two of the three questions below and provide an answer in a paragraph or so in the space provided. Each response is worth 20 points, and this entire section is worth 30% of the exam score.

1. An educational researcher is interested in the relationship between students’ participation in two after school programs and academic achievement. She states the following hypothesis in the description of her study:


H.1. Children who participate in an after school program that emphasizes critical thinking skills will score higher on measures of academic achievement and self esteem than students who participate in a program that emphasizes rote memorization.
What are the variables in this study? What would be good names for the variables? Identify the independent variable(s) and dependent variable(s). Describe how each variable varies (i.e., whether the variable is categorical or continuous). Provide justification for why each variable varies the way you describe?

2. Suppose the state department of education has developed a new instrument for evaluating teacher performance. What empirical evidence would provide strong support for the validity of the scores resulting from this instrument? Make sure that your answer incorporates the methods of providing validity evidence described in the textbook and in class.

3. Many educators are familiar with the accountability requirements specified by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2002 (NCLB). However, few are aware of how NCLB affects educational research. Discuss how NCLB defines scientifically-based research and why this is controversial in the educational research community.





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