Measurement Construction in Research Papers
Quite often, in upper level college research, measurement construction will be required in order to prove a hypothesis or research question. Paper Masters can help you with this difficult concept when quantifying research. Below is a brief overview of how to integrate measurement construction into your research.
- In order to develop measures of your variables, you must know exactly what those variables are. This will involve a few steps. Specifically:
- Refine and finalize your research question, so that you are satisfied with it.
- Firm up the sort of design (including data collection procedures) and sample you want to use for this small study. You need not work out all the details at this point, but give a brief description of what you’re thinking. In order to construct measures, you must know more or less how they will be used and with whom!
- Develop clear, concise conceptual and operational definitions of all your variables. (Operational definitions are descriptions of the actual measures. They include such things as the type of scale, the number of items in the scale, etc.)
- Make a concept-variable-item chart listing each concept in your research question, the variables in your hypotheses that match these concepts (some concepts have more than one variable), and the item/question numbers (from your questionnaire) that measure those variables. You should have virtually a one-to-one match. That is, each concept must be measured and there should be no items that don't measure something, except possibly for an introductory item or two.
- Draft the standardized questionnaire items to measure your variables. These might be “agree/disagree” type items, or Ayes/no@ questions. They might be standardized "fill in the blank" items for auditing records or columns for ticking off each time a specific behavior occurs during a specified observation period. The keys are that a) the items you write must yield the data you need to test your hypotheses and b) most or all of them must be standardized. Be creative but not wild! For abstract variables, write five or more items for each variable. For some "factual" variables (such as age), a single item will suffice.
Further Information on Measurement Construction Term Paper:
- Put the items/questions you have written together in a data-collection instrument (probably a questionnaire).
- Pay attention to lay-out. This instrument must work for you; data collection is seldom done under ideal circumstances.