New Variable

An APA-formatted title page (2 points), which includes: The title of your report If you have chosen a revised “New Variable”: Name the variable and the item number of the survey item that measures it.

 

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Specify a “New Hypothesis” that relates the concept of “social media use” to the revised “New Variable” that you have chosen. This hypothesis should be in the standard two-sentence format. An Introduction section (20 points total) includes An opening, which introduces the topic to be studied alongside the research question.

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Make sure that your opening provides information regarding why it is interesting or important (or both) to be studying your research question. A literature review summarizing the Core Article along with two additional research articles that provide information regarding your “New Variable” and how it relates to social media use.

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When you review the Core Article, keep in mind that you will be reporting a replication effort in the Results/Discussion sections – therefore, you should introduce the relevant variables and main result Zivnuska et. al observed regarding the relationship between these variables.

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This is also an opportunity to improve the integration of topics within your introduction – given the relationship observed by Zivnuska et. al, how does this inform how you think about your “New Variable”, and how it may be related to social media use? How does the information provided by your other two articles expand this perspective?

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Remember, an ideal literature review builds upon itself, becoming more specific until the research question is all but obvious (at which point, the research question is specified in the closing). Ensure that the paragraphs of your literature review begin with topic sentences.

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This is another opportunity to increase the cohesion of your review – a good topic sentence addresses what was just presented in the previous paragraph, and establishes how that will be expanded upon in the coming paragraph. A closing, which includes a specific statement of the research question, your hypothesis (in two-sentence format), and a brief overview of the methods of the study (how you intend to operationalize the constructs considered by your research question/hypothesis).

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Review your hypothesis to ensure that it is in the two-sentence format – if you need a review on this format, please see the section recording/slides from Tuesday of Week 2. A Methods section (16 points total) which includes:

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A “Participants” subsection which reports on: who the participants in the study were. how they were “recruited”. how many participated. whether the participants received any incentive for participating. A “Measures” subsection which reports on the measures (that is, operational definitions of your constructs) employed the study:

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IF YOU CHOSE A REVISED “NEW VARIABLE”, BE SURE TO UPDATE THIS SECTION WITH THE RELEVANT INFORMATION.  Be sure to name the variables/constructs that your study considered.  Make sure to properly describe how social media use and school/work-life balance were operationalized/measured.

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As a reminder, there were four items that were included on the Class Project survey for each of these two variables. These items were produced by the teaching staff and were modified/abridged versions of the measures used in the original study. The scores from each set of four items were combined together to create a “composite” score for each variable.

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For both the social media use and school/work-life balance variables, provide as an example the text of one item that contributed to the composite score. Include the scale range and anchor labels (for close-ended) or units (for open-ended) of the scale. Be sure to address the fact that composite scores were created for the social media use and school/work-life balance variables from a set of four items each.

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State that the scores from each item were added together to create the composite score, and report the possible range of values for each of the composite scores.  Describe the item used in the survey to measure the “New Variable” that your hypothesis relates to the Core Variable of social media use. Provide as an example the text of the item as it appeared on the survey.

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For items that used a rating scale, indicate how many “points” the rating scale had (e.g., a 5-point rating scale, a 7-point rating scale) and what the “anchors” (the written words at the two endpoints) of the rating scale were. The item and the anchors should be placed in quotes, but you do not need to put a citation or page number. For open-ended items, state the units of the scale.

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Discuss the potential impact of at least two types of validity (reviewed in class and in the text) in a manner that demonstrates your understanding of the concept. For example, if your “New Variable” is sleep quality, you could discuss convergent validity, and how a measure of daytime alertness should be correlated to your sleep quality measure.

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A “Procedure” subsection, which is a step-by-step report of how the study was conducted, from the participant’s point of view. Include details such as how the survey was made available, the number of items on the survey, whether the participants were given the option to not respond, etc. A Results section (16 points total) which includes four paragraphs: First paragraph: Social media use.

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On average, how much “social media use” do the respondents engage in? Tell the reader about this by using the statistics we’ve provided– the mean, median, mode, and standard deviation of the composite score — but don’t just say “For social media use…” and report the statistics.

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Pretend that your reader does not know what a “mean,” “median,” and “mode” are, so use those statistics (just these measures of central tendency) to describe the social media use of students in our class (i.e., “in plain language”), while reporting the values of the statistics alongside this description.

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THIS DOES NOT MEAN THAT YOU SHOULD PROVIDE THE DEFINITION OF this STATISTICS – INSTEAD, THE MANNER IN WHICH YOU REPORT THE RESULT SHOULD REFLECT WHAT THE STATISTICS IMPLIES. SEE BELOW FOR AN EXAMPLE. You also want to ensure that you report the fact that this is a composite score.

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Example (note that this is not complete and that these values are arbitrary): “The average participant experienced a moderate amount of test anxiety, and most participants scored close to this value (M = 4.23, SD = 1.33). It should be noted that half of the sampled participants scored relatively low in terms of the degree of test anxiety experienced (Mdn = 3).”

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Second paragraph: School/work-life balance. Find and report the mean and standard deviation for the composite score of the school/work-life balance items. You do not need to report the median and mode for this variable, but you should again describe the school/work-life balance of the class along with reporting the values of the statistics.

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Third paragraph: Correlation between social media use and school/work-life balance. In this paragraph, you should find and report the correlation (strength, direction, level of statistical significance (see the guide below)) between the composite social media use score and the composite school/work-life balance score.

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Again, you should be describing the quality of the association along with reporting the value of the statistic. To determine whether that correlation value is “statistically significant” or “not statistically significant,” you will need to use the guidance provided below.

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Remember, you are using the statistics presented in the Excel column for the (combined) score for those variables, not for the individual items used to create each score. Fourth paragraph: Your “New Variable” and the correlation to social media use. In this paragraph, you will first report the mean, median, mode, and standard deviation of the item you have chosen to report (which should be the item you submitted, unless it was not included.

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If so, see above) in a manner similar to how you have reported social media use and school/work-life balance. Then, you will report the correlation (strength, direction, level of significance) between social media use and your “New Variable”. Make sure to describe these statistics as you have for the previous variables.

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A Discussion section (12 points total) which includes: A summary of the study. You should succinctly describe the findings related to social media use, school/work-life balance, and your “New Variable”. Be sure to address whether or not the findings of the original Core Article (concerning social media use and work-life balance) were replicated by our measures of social media use and school/work-life balance.

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What is the implication of the presence of replication, or a lack of one? Here, you should not be reporting the statistics that you have just reported in the results section. Instead, briefly describe the most relevant results in “plain language”.  A discussion of the theoretical or practical implications of the observed result between social media use and your “New Variable”.

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If a significant correlation between social media use and your “New Variable” was observed, what is the importance of this relationship? Here, you may speculate on causal factors, but you must be clear that you are speculating/thinking of future directions.

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If a significant correlation was not observed, speculate on why a relationship between the two variables might not exist (but again, be clear that this is speculation – when you do, you can easily transition into the next portion).  Limitations/future directions – What were some potential limitations of this study?

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How could these limitations impact how the results are interpreted? How could this research be extended, expanded, or continued in the future? A References section which includes: APA formatted references for any research articles you have cited in your Introduction and Methods sections.

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This will contain at least three references; the reference for the Core Article, and the references from the two additional research articles that you present in your Introduction. Your references, citations, and APA style (5 points total) will be evaluated for proper formatting and usage. Nine (9) additional points will be attributed to the organization of the paper, overall clarity,  and the presence of scientific writing.

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General Notes: DO NOT USE CAUSAL LANGUAGE AT ANY POINT IN YOUR PAPER. This includes terms such as “influence”, “impact”, “effect”, “affect”, “cause”, etc. This is a correlational study, and so it should be discussed in terms of relationships, associations, correlations, etc. YOUR MEASURES SECTION WILL REQUIRE AN AMOUNT OF UPDATING.

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When you wrote Writing Assignment 1, many of the details of the Class Project survey were not finalized. You will now need to update your Methods section with these details – see above for a specification. Ensure that your research report is formatted according to APA guidelines.

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The APA template that was provided (you can find the link in the Writing Assignment 1 description) has much of this formatting already implemented. A RUNNING HEADER should be included on all pages of your paper. The page numbers should start on the first page of your introduction, not the title page.

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Your hypothesis should be in the two-sentence format covered in sections/labs. Your procedure should be short – there were not a lot of steps necessary to fully conduct this study. There’s an example of a Procedure written by a student in the past that received full marks in the 7/7 section slides – we suggest using this as guidance (but don’t copy it word for word!).

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The majority of you have errors in your APA formatting, both in the References section and in your in-text citations (some of you don’t have in-text citations at all, which you need to add). Please review either the 7/2 section slides or the Purdue Owl website for guidelines. Please use third-person POV throughout (do not use “I” or “my” – “we” is fine

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