Becoming a Behavioral Science Researcher: A Guide to Producing Research That Matters / Edition 1

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Overview

Students and beginning researchers often discover that their introductory statistics and methods courses have not fully equipped them to plan and execute their own behavioral research studies. This book bridges the gap between coursework and conducting independent research. The author helps the reader build needed skills to formulate a precise, meaningful research question; understand the pros and cons of widely used research designs and analysis options; correctly interpret the outcomes of statistical tests; make informed measurement choices for a particular study; manage the practical aspects of data screening and preparation; and craft effective journal articles, oral presentations, and posters. Including annotated examples and recommended readings, most chapters feature theoretical and computer-based exercises, complete with an answer appendix so readers can check their work.
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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Reviewer: Nicholas Greco IV, MS, BCETS, CATSM (Columbia College of Missouri)
Description: This informative guide on how to successfully conduct and present research across all areas of behavioral science should be the desktop mentor for all graduate students and current researchers.
Purpose: The book is designed to help readers gather all of the knowledge gained through their coursework and experiences and consolidate it into meaningful practice. It is about being able to bridge the gap between coursework and independent research. This gap tends to be where the most errors occur. Using such a reference will help researchers greatly reduce or eliminate these errors.
Audience: All students and beginning researchers will benefit from this book, especially those in the behavioral sciences. This could easily be a standalone book for a course or seminar as well as a supplemental text for any graduate or advanced level course in research methods. The author has done an exceptional job of closing the gap that has existed for far too long.
Features: The book covers the gray areas that coursework cannot in the allotted time, such as the main problems and concerns of behavioral science research. There are strong reviews of validity and reliability and must-needed chapters on statistics and effect sizes. I enjoyed the focus on measurement, which is an area that in recent years has not received much attention but definitely deserves it. The chapters on writing and presentations are must-read and provide great do's and don'ts that even the most seasoned researchers still need.
Assessment: I love this book. As a behavioral science researcher for a major pharmaceutical company and an educator, I will use this book and recommend it to my colleagues and students.
From the Publisher

"Outstanding! Kline is masterful in helping to fill the sometimes cavernous gap between research coursework and applied practice. The focus on modern approaches, including emphasis on replication and effect sizes, represents a new (and needed) generation of research texts, which will benefit advanced undergraduate and graduate students alike in their research courses and seminars. The book honestly and artfully walks the fine line between applied accessibility and necessary depth of content."--Robin K. Henson, PhD, Department of Educational Psychology, University of North Texas
 

"Many beginning graduate students find that conventional statistics and methods courses do not give them enough of the practical skills in data analysis, interpretation, and oral and written communication that they need to succeed. Kline has given us a wonderfully wise guide to these skills. This book is beautifully written, entirely practical, and includes the latest statistical approaches. It is essential reading for anyone who wishes to become a successful behavioral science researcher today."--Geoff Cumming, DPhil, School of Psychological Science (Emeritus), La Trobe University, Australia

"A book designed to improve the quality of behavioral and social science research and the way in which it is communicated. I would strongly recommend this text for use in both undergraduate and graduate research methods courses. It offers students a glimpse of many important issues in the field. In particular, the emphasis on, and presentation of, measurement and statistics reform should truly benefit students. This book is a valuable resource for anyone who intends to pursue a career in the behavioral or social sciences."--Chris L. S. Coryn, PhD, Director, Interdisciplinary PhD Program in Evaluation, The Evaluation Center, Western Michigan University

"This book could be used in a graduate seminar that has the goals of bridging the gap between statistics and methods courses and preparing students to conduct good research. I appreciated the section on data screening--a crucial topic--and found the author's treatment of how to write each section of an empirical paper quite valuable. The APA style manual is not nearly as instructive. This text is the kind of book that you keep; it would serve as a handy reference."--Theresa DiDonato, doctoral candidate, Department of Psychology, Brown University

"This is more than a textbook; it is a portable mentor! Kline brings his considerable knowledge and approachable style to the aid of advanced undergraduates and graduate students alike. The book addresses so many issues that fall through the cracks in our fragmented coursework, such as the general integration of design, measurement, and analysis. I would be remiss if I did not make this mandatory reading for all of my students."--Gregory R. Hancock, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Measurement, Statistics and Evaluation, University of Maryland, College Park

"Kline has written the finest synthesis of initiating and finishing research for graduate students that I have read. It is comprehensive, integrative, and couched at a level that will engage students in the research process. I wish I'd had this book when I was first starting out. This text could be used in a proseminar or basic research methods course for first-year graduate students, an honors undergraduate class, or an upper-division thesis course."--William R. Shadish, PhD, Chair, Psychological Sciences Section, University of California, Merced

"This book helps me sell research to my students and present the big picture like no other methods text I’ve seen. It not only covers basic research designs and methods, but also provides the most current treatment of effect sizes, meta-analysis, and the paradigmatic shift from significance tests to model fitting--all within a painfully honest critique of the limits of research as currently conducted and published, and what social scientists need to do to improve it. Like Kline’s book on structural equation modeling (which was all I needed to learn SEM), this book is crystal clear and engaging. Yet what makes it most unique and essential for my students is its synthetic approach and attention to the big issues. This is what I most want my students to learn. They can easily find more information about specific designs and sampling techniques, but if they don’t 'get' research--its purpose, meaning, and importance--then I haven’t done my job."--Michael J. Karcher, EdD, PhD, Department of Counseling, University of Texas at San Antonio

PsycCRITIQUES

"The organization of chapters and sections makes this an extremely flexible resource that can be used in a variety of classes. Each chapter is primarily devoted to one independent topic, which allows for easy distribution to students without the need for additional chapters from the book....The major sections of the book revolve around themes that could easily be split up and covered in different classes....The complete book could undoubtedly be used as a supplement to an advanced research design and analysis course or as a way to guide mentoring of a research student. This amazing flexibility makes this book an invaluable addition to any teacher's library....It not only provides a current look at the field of behavioral science but also provides a means for moving the field forward. Each chapter provides current information on how to design, analyze, and present research that will invigorate psychology. Because of Kline's wonderfully comprehensive work, the book is an easy reference for all researchers looking for more modern approaches to research design and analysis. Even the most informed psychologist is likely to learn something by reading this book....A superb resource for students and teachers alike....It would enhance any psychology curriculum and help the students of today become first-rate researchers of tomorrow."--PsycCRITIQUES
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781593858377
  • Publisher: Guilford Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/5/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 367
  • Sales rank: 745,689
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author


Rex B. Kline is Associate Professor of Psychology at Concordia University in Montréal, Québec, Canada. Since earning a doctorate in psychology, his areas of research and writing have included the psychometric evaluation of cognitive abilities in children, child clinical assessment, structural equation modeling, statistics reform, and usability engineering in computer science. Dr. Kline has published four books, several chapters, and more than 40 articles in research journals.
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Table of Contents

I Promises and problems

1 Introduction 3

2 The Good, the Bad, and the (Really) Ugly of Behavioral Science Research 15

II Concepts

3 The Research Trinity 39

4 Design and Analysis 73

5 The Truth about Statistics 117

6 Effect Size Estimation 153

7 Measurement 191

III Skills

8 Practical Data Analysis 225

9 Writing 253

10 Presentations 283

Suggested Answers to Exercises 313

References 333

Author Index 347

Subject Index 353

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