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What is a time series study and a panel study?  Make sure you fully explain what the two are as concepts and fully explain the similarities and differences.

Time series study is a study which involves measurements that is done periodically. The population being studied is divided into groups which are studied over a defined period. During this period therapeutic and preventive interventions are done with measurement of variables and factors. While, panel study is a research which is done using a constant set of a population and the researcher compares the individual opinion at different time as opposed to series study which is divided into groups.

If I interview people on the phone over a month and call a different 100 people each day to learn which political parties will likely win the next election, is this an example of cross-sectional or longitudinal research? Explain which type it is and why. If it is longitudinal, explain which type of longitudinal study it is.

This type of study is cross sectional studies/analysis which a subsection of the population is interviewed every day for a period of one month. It is not longitudinal research because longitudinal research involves study of the same group several times within a given period. While this research each time the 100 people are called they are different from who were called the previous day.

What is the positivist approach to social science? Explain how the positivist approach differs from other approaches and indicate which approach you feel is best, making sure to explain why you feel it is the best. 

Positivist approach to social science is a philosophical approach system or theory which is based on the view of natural sciences and social. The main assumptions of positivism which makes it much different with other approaches are; the fact that sciences involve research of general laws on empirical phenomena.

Explain the difference between a deductive approach and an inductive approach to research?  Give an example of each process and explain why this is important for the process of social research.

Deductive approach in research involves reasoning of a research on basis of working on the research of more general to the more specific areas. It is also known as top-down approach. While Inductive approach in research is the reveres of Deductive approach which the research starts with specific observations to broader perspective also know as bottom-up approach. Both approaches could be used in different scenarios deductive approach would be used in an area which the study is meant to prove or confirm some hypothesis while inductive approach is open ended and is used for areas which require establishment of regularities and patterns with an aim of formulating some hypotheses. For example a research can be done for a discovery of a disease which would be used to research on the causes of the disease such a research would be aimed at a top down approach also known as deductive approach. While research of what would be consequences of heavy rain within a given period it starts with the specific observations to a broader perspective this is Inductive approach.

Why is spuriousness a problem for researchers?  Explain what the concept is and why this is a threat to research.

Spuriousness is an experimental technique which is used to predict direct causal relationships between two variables and it is commonly used in statistics. Spuriousness is a problem to researchers because they are techniques which support use of predictions of relationships instead of using evident facts from research.

If I hypothesize that age as well as social class influences a person’s choice to vote for a social democratic or communist candidate in an election, which is/are the dependent and which is/are the independent variables?  Explain why it is that the one(s) you chose is/are the dependent and independent variables.

The social democratic and communist candidates are the independent variables as they do not change while the age of the voters is dependent as it keeps on changing on the candidates favored by one of the age group as opposed to the other.  

For each of the following, indicate the level of measurement and why you believe it to be at that level of measurement. Explaining the reasoning important.

How full a fuel tank is, as reported in percentages?

The level of measurement to be used is ratio measurements which will be achieved by getting the ration of the fuel in the tank in relation to the capacity of the tank. To get the ratio of the what the tank has as compared to how many liters feels in the tank.

How many liters of fuel are currently in a fuel tank?

The current number of liters in the fuel tank would be measured using ratio measurements in relation to the fuel being used as it will provide the fuel remaining in the tank.

The number of hours a person sleeps per day.

The appropriate measurements is ratio measurement in relation to the number of hours which he is awake in within the 24hours of a day.

How many grams a full bottle of water weighs.

The level of measurement would use ration measurement which would determine the number of grams in the bottle by depend on the volume of the bottle and the density of the water.

How much a person agrees (on a scale of 1 agree completely to 5 disagree completely) that the government should increase spending on prisons.

Interval measurement would be applicable to determine the probability depending on the variance analysis of the services offered in the prison.

Which racial group a person belongs to, based upon her/his response to an interviewer.

Nominal measurements would be used to determine the racial group which they belong to among the different racial groupings.

The percentage of time a person spends reading e-mails in a workday at the office.

Ratio measurement would be used to compare how many hours he is at the workplace in relation to the hours the worker worked.

Which political party a person claims that she/he will vote for in the next election.

Nominal measurements should be used on the candidates of the political parties as the answer will be dependent on political party candidate whom is influencing the voter.

The grade you will receive for this course (as measured in A, A-, B+…).

Ordinal  measurement would be used to grade the course in relation to the scores earned as compared to what would be achieved in each course unit.

How much a person agrees (on a scale of 1 agree completely to 5 disagree completely) that the president is doing a good job.

Interval measurement would be used to get the level on how people would make their decision based on the variance analysis.

What is the ecological fallacy?  Explain why this causes or can cause a problem from the perspective of the researcher. Make sure you give an example to show that you understand the concept fully.

The ecological fallacy is a situation which a researcher makes influence/influences of an individual based on a data of a group. This causes a problem with the perspective of the researcher in relation to a group date as opposed to an individual data. Hence, the data obtained will not be accurate. The researcher base their final analysis on the results they get from a group of which they have researched on.

What is the importance in having a random sample in research?  Explain why this is important, giving an example to show that you fully understand the importance of the issue. 

Random sampling in research provides a fair distribution of the population which will be interviewed. This kind of application is applicable to a large population which all of it could not be used due to its large number of the population. Hence, random sampling enables the researcher to have fair presentation of the population. Random sampling is of great importance as it enable the research to break down the population being researched in to manageable sizes. It also ensure that the research being done is well distributed within the population being researched.

Do you feel that it is more important to have a reliable or a valid measure?  Explain your position, making it clear that you understand the differences between the concepts of reliability and validity.  Give examples, to illustrate you understand the difference.

Yes it is important to have a valid and reliable measure to obtain an accurate population which will be subjected to research. Once the data is measured using the correct tool it will be valid and reliable for an accurate. Use of valid measure ensures that the data obtained from the research will be analyzed accurately to obtain the information which is accurate. The analyst will get data which is accurate because it has been obtained using the appropriate   means of measurement. The data obtained is also valid in relation to the research being used this also improves on the quality of the decisions made after the research.

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