Conducting Educational Research / Edition 6

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Conducting Educational Research, Sixth Edition thoroughly addresses the major components of research design and methodology. The text is especially useful for inexperienced student-researchers and doctoral students in the early stages of preparing a dissertation. The early chapters of the text clearly describe the process of selecting a problem, reviewing the literature, constructing a hypothesis, identifying and labeling variables, and constructing operational definitions. The later chapters assist students in refining methodological procedures, analyzing data, and writing the final research report. The clarity of the text and the numerous practical examples help to reinforce important concepts and key ideas, increasing the efficacy of the text for even the most inexperienced student-researchers. Additionally, sample studies are included as models of acceptable published research and serve as a guide against which students may evaluate their own work.

Changes in New Edition
·More illustrations, tables, figures, and bulleted lists to enhance understanding
·More and simpler explanations of complex process
·A greater balance between the various approaches to research, ranging from experimental to qualitative, with causal-comparative, survey, and evaluation in-between
Part I
·Expanded to include additional ethical considerations when conducting research.
Part II:
·Renamed "Carrying out Fundamental Steps of Research"
·Additional details regarding measurement and observation
·Expanded discussion of the application of design criteria
Part III:
·Renamed "Carrying out Quantitative Research"
·Additional chapters on experimental research, correlational and causal-comparative research, survey research, and evaluation research.

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Editorial Reviews

R. D. Nordgren
Based on my experience with scores of graduate student research projects, I believe Conducting Educational Research, sixth edition to be clear, concise, and highly accessible for all students. The content is sufficiently thorough, yet it is effectively laid out so that even the most novice research student would not find the text user-friendly.
Madeline Justice
A unique book for teachers of research and a “must have” guide for novice researchers. The book contains plenty of clear-cut examples that demonstrate research methods, ideas or concepts. It is one of the best that I have read on research!
Marius Boboc
The full spectrum of educational researchers — from novice to experienced — will enjoy the practical guidance provided by Tuckman and Harper in their book. The abundance of real-life examples, sample studies, and self-evaluation tools connect theory with its applications in a variety of settings. Therefore, this book represents a valuable resource to any educational research endeavor.
Ronald Beebe
This is a readable and understandable introduction to educational research focused on issues of importance to the classroom teaching and learning experience. Instructors are provided with concrete examples of research related to the classroom that is relevant to teachers; teachers are offered a clear presentation of the terms and processes critical to the development of sound research methodology and analysis. A useful resource for teaching concepts of research in the graduate classroom, as well as a reference for teachers to use in future practice in their own classroom.
A revised and updated (3rd ed., 1988) standard textbook on research methods in education. This edition adds a new chapter dealing exclusively with the topic of critically evaluating published research, including a description of how to do it along with a detailed example. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781442209640
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/9/2012
  • Edition description: 6th Edition
  • Edition number: 6
  • Pages: 532
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Bruce W. Tuckman is professor of educational psychology at the Ohio State University, where he is also Founding Director of the Walter E. Dennis Learning Center. Tuckman is an American Psychologist, who has carried out seminal research into the theory of group dynamics. In 1965, he published a model of group development called Tuckman’s Stages, with stages of Forming, Storming, Norming, and Performing. In 1977, he added a fifth stage named Adjourning. Tuckman's current scholarly interest focuses on the topic of motivation: its manifestation in the form of self-regulatory behavior, and its absence in the form of procrastination, particularly as applied to the behavior of studying. He is building a model linking motivational factors to school achievement, and is examining specific interventions that enhance the self-regulatory behavior of students. He is also interested in study strategies that help students learn from text.

Brian E. Harper is associate professor of educational psychology at Cleveland State University. A former classroom teacher in the Philadelphia , Pennsylvania public school district, Dr. Harper completed his doctoral work at The Ohio State University in Educational Psychology. His research interests include African American racial identity development and motivational psychology, particularly as it applies to students in urban settings. His current work focuses on African American students and the factors that promote or inhibit academic self-regulation.

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Table of Contents

Part I. Introduction
Chapter 1: The Role of Research
What Is Research?
Validity in Research
Internal and External Validity
Dealing With Reality
Survey Research
Characteristics of the Research Process
Some Ethical Considerations
Self Evaluations

Part II. Fundamental Steps of Research
Chapter 2: Selecting a Problem
Characteristics of a Problem
Narrowing the Range of Problems
Classroom Research Problems
Another Problem Framework
Programmatic Research as a Source of Problems
Specific Considerations in Choosing a Problem

Chapter 3: Reviewing the Literature
The Purpose of the Review
Literature Review Sources
Conducting a Literature Search
Reviewing and Abstracting
Writing the Literature Review

Chapter 4: Identifying and Labeling Variables
A Research Question and Its Variables
The Independent Variable
The Dependent Variable
The Relationship Between Independent and Dependent Variables
The Moderator Variable
Control Variables
Intervening Variables
The Combined Variables
Some Considerations for Variable Choice

Chapter 5: Constructing Hypotheses and Meta-Analyses
Formulating Hypotheses
Hypotheses Based on Conceptualizing
Going From Theory to Hypotheses: An Example
Meta-Analysis: Constructing Hypotheses by Synthesizing Past Research
Some Further Illustrations
Testing a Hypothesis

Chapter 6: Constructing Operational Definitions of Variables
Why Have Operational Definitions?
Basing an Operational Definition on Observable Criteria
Alternative Ways of Generating Operational Definitions
The Criterion of Exclusiveness
Operational Definitions and the Research Process
The Research Spectrum

Part III. Types of Research

Chapter 7: Applying Design Criteria: Internal and External Validity
The Control Group
Factors Affecting Internal Validity or Certainty
Factors Affecting External Validity or Generality
Controlling for Participant Bias: Equating Experimental and Control Groups
Controlling for Experience Bias: Equating Experimental and Control Conditions
Overall Control of Participant and Experience Bias
Appraising the Success of the Manipulation

Chapter 8: Experimental Research Designs
A Shorthand for Displaying Designs
Pre-Experimental Designs (Non-designs)
True Experimental Designs
Factorial Designs
Quasi-Experimental Designs
Ex Post Facto Designs
Designs to Control for External Validity Based on Reactive Effects

Chapter 9: Correlational and Casual-Comparative Research
Correlational and Casual-Comparative Research
Correlational Research
Steps to Conducting a Correlational Study
Casuaul-Comparative Research
Longitudinal Research
Threats to Internal and External Validity for the Three Designs

Chapter 10: Identifying and Describing Procedures for Observation and Measurement
Test Reliability
Test Validity
Types of Measurement Scales
Ordinal Scales
Describing Test Performances
Standardized, or Norm-Referenced, Tests
Criterion-Referenced Tests
Constructing a Paper-and-Pencil Performance Test
Constructing a Scale
Constructing an Observation Recording Device

Chapter 11: Constructing and Using Questionnaires, Interviews, and Survey Research
What is Survey Research?
What Do Questionnaires and Interviews Measure?
Question Formats: How to Ask the Questions
Response Modes: How to Answer the Questions
Constructing a Questionnaire or Interview Schedule
Sampling Procedures
Procedures for Administrating a Questionnaire
Conducting an Interview Study
Coding and Scoring

Part IV. Concluding Steps of Research
Chapter 12 Carrying Out Statistical Analyses
Measures of Central Tendency and Variability
Coding and Rostering Data
Choosing the Appropriate Statistical Test
Carrying Out Parametric Statistical Tests
Correlation and Regression Analyses
Carrying Out Nonparametric Statistical Tests

Chapter 13: Writing a Research Report
The Research Proposal
The Introduction Section
The Method Section
The Results Section
The Discussion Section
The References
The Abstract
Preparing Tables
Preparing Figures and Graphs
Getting an Article Published

Part V. Additional Approaches
Chapter 14: Conducting Evaluation Studies
Formative Versus Summative Evaluation
A Model for Summative Evaluation
Defining the Goals of a Program
Measuring the Goals of a Program (The Dependent Variable)
Assessing Attainment of a Program’s Goals
Design, Data Collection, and Statistical Analysis

Chapter 15: Qualitative Research: Concepts and Analysis
Characteristics of Qualitative Research
Identifying General Research Problems
Specifying the Questions to Answer
Research Methodology
Data Sources
Conducting a Case Study
Analyzing the Data and Preparing the Report

Chapter 16: Action Research
What is Action Research?
Assumptions That Guide Action Research
The Process of Action Research
Evaluation Action Research

Part VI. The “Consumer” of Research
Chapter 17: Analyzing and Critiquing a Research Study
The Introductory Section
The Method Section
The Results and Discussion Sections
An Sample Research Report: Analysis and Critique
An Example Evaluation

Part VII. Appendixes
Appendix A: Tables
Appendix B: Worksheets for Performing Statistical Tests

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