Research Methods in Education: An Introduction / Edition 7

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Wiersma / Jurs, Research Methods in Education: An Introduction, 9e 0205581927

A classic in its field, Research Methods in Education explains the research process with emphasis on the formulation of a research question, referencing current literature in the field, using appropriate research designs, and writing and evaluating research reports. Both quantitative and qualitative research designs are described. Measurement, sampling, and statistics are presented as essential research tools.

New to this edition:

  • The reorganization of the chapters into three sections is in response to requests from reviewers and current users of the text.
  • New examples have been added that capture the students’ interest, for example, the relationship between poor reading skills and suicidal tendencies.
  • New exercises have been added at the end of every chapter.
  • The previous data sets used in the statistics chapters have been updated with current data sets.

Here’s what your colleagues are saying:

“I have used Wiersma’s texts for many years and…I plan to continue to use it.”
• Doris L. Prater, University of Houston

“Very thorough, easy to read and follow.”
• Darla Twale, University of Dayton

“Research Methods in Education is a useful guidebook for students to understand the basic principles and methodology involved in all types of research, be it experimental, quasi-experimental, survey, correlational, action, enthroposophic, or single subject design. Basically, the text covers all aspects of qualitative and quantitative research methods.”
• GholamKibria, Delaware State University


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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205284924
  • Publisher: Pearson Education
  • Publication date: 7/19/1999
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 7
  • Pages: 476
  • Product dimensions: 7.18 (w) x 9.48 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Table of Contents



1. Educational Research: Its Nature and Characteristics


The Nature of Educational Research

The Systematic Process of Research

The Validity of Educational Research

Internal Validity

External Validity

The Reliability of Educational Research

Research Has a Variety of Forms

Classification of Educational Research

Basic and Applied Research

Qualitative and Quantitative Research

General Methods of Research

Experimental Research

Quasi-Experimental Research

Nonexperimental Quantitative Research

Historical Research

Ethnographic Research

The Role of Theory

The Activities of the Research Process

Identification of the Research Problem

Data Collection


Summarizing Results and Drawing Conclusions


The Function of Educational Research

Key Concepts




2. Identification of a Research Problem

Selection of a Research Problem

Statement of the ResearchProblem

Constants, Variables, and Operational Definition

Independent and Dependent Variables

Other Possible Types of Variables

Variables as They are Measured

Operational Definition

Hypotheses and the Statement of the Problem

Types and Forms of Hypotheses

Examples of Hypotheses Related to Problem Statements

Examples From the Research Literature


Key Concepts




3. The Review of the Literature

The Activities of the Review of the Literature

Sources of Information

The Library

Periodical Literature

Education Index

Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC)

An Example Using CIJE and RIE

Other Indexes and Abstracts

Review of Educational Research (RER)

Reports of Meta-Analysis

Abstracts and Reports in Periodicals

Theses and Dissertations


Computer Searches of Databases

Conducting a Search

Searching a Database for a Specific Research Problem — One


Searching a Database for a Specific Research Problem — More than

One Descriptor

Other Sources Available Through the Computer

Selecting Studies for the Review of the Literature

Assembling and Summarizing Information

Abstract or Summary

Organizing Information

Interpreting and Using Information

Critical Review

Writing the Review


Preparing the Bibliography


Key Concepts




4. Research Design in Quantitative Research

The Purposes of Research Design

The Concept of Controlling Variance

Procedures for Controlling Variance


Building in Factors as Independent Variables

Holding Factors Constant

Statistical Control

Using Procedures for Control in Combination

Characteristics of Good Research Design

Freedom from Bias

Freedom from Confounding

Control of Extraneous Variables

Statistical Precision for Testing Hypotheses


Key Concepts




5. Experimental Research

The Meaning of Experimental Design

Experimental Variables

Use of the Term Subject

Criteria for a Well-Designed Experiment

Experimental Validity

Threats to Experimental Validity

Posttest-Only Control Group Design

Pretest-Posttest Control Group Design

Solomon Four-Group Design

Factorial Designs

Repeated Measures Designs

Designs Extended in Time

Time Series Designs

Interpreting Results of Experiments

Randomness and Representativeness


Key Concepts




6. Quasi-Experimental Research

The Problems of Validity

Posttest-Only, Nonequivalent Control Group Design

Pretest-Posttest, Nonequivalent Control Group Design

Time Series Designs

Single-Group Time Series Design

Multiple-Group Time Series Design

Variations in Time Series Designs

Single-Subject Designs

A-B Design

A-B-A Design

A-B-A-B Design

Multiple-Baseline Designs

Multiple-Baseline Design Across Behaviors

Multiple-Baseline Design Across Subjects

Multiple-Baseline Design Across Situations

Action Research and Quasi-Experimental Research


Key Concepts




7. Non-Experimental Quantitative Research

Non-Experimental Quantitative Research: Its Scope and Description

Ex post facto Research

Causal-Comparative Research Examples

Correlational Research Examples

Survey Research

Survey Designs

Longitudinal Designs

Cross-Sectional Designs

The Methodology of Survey Research

Questionnaire Surveys

Item Construction

Item Format

Pilot Run of the Items

The Cover Letter

Questionnaire Format

Procedures for Increasing Response Rate

Follow-up Procedures

Identifying Sources of Nonresponse

Incomplete and Possible Dishonest Response


Community Surveys

Client Surveys

Web-Based Surveys

Factors to Consider When Conducting Web-Based Surveys

Interview Surveys

Interview Items

Conducting the Interview

Potential Sources of Error

Telephone Interviews

A Comment About Branching Items

Other Surveys

Analyzing and Reporting Survey Results

Hypothetical Example 1

Hypothetical Example 2


Key Concepts




8. Research Design in Qualitative Research

The Epistemology of Qualitative Research

Components of Research Design

Working Design

Working Hypotheses

Data Collection

Data Analysis and Interpretation

Possible Codes

Coding Examples

Types of Designs in Qualitative Research

Perspectives for Qualitative Research

Example: Funnel Approach

Example: Modified Analytic Induction Approach

Reliability and Validity of Qualitative Research

Use of Technology in Qualitative Research

Capabilities of Computer Software in Qualitative Research


Key Concepts




9. Historical Research

The Value of Historical Research

Sources of Information in Historical Research

The Methodology of Historical Research

Identification of the Research Problem

Collection and Evaluation of Source Materials

External Criticism

Internal Criticism

Synthesis of Information



11. Mixed, Modeling and Delphi Methods

Mixed Methods


Modeling Methods

Application of Modeling Methods

Developing the Conceptual Model

Model Specification

Model Fitting


Delphi Method

The Delphi Process

Question Definition

Delphi-Panel Creation

First-Round Questionnaire: Initial Subject Consideration

Subsequent-Round Questionnaires and the Analysis of


Variations of the Delphi

Examples of the Delphi

Considerations When Conducting a Delphi


Key Concepts




12. Sampling Designs

The Concept of a Random Sample

Random Selection and Random Assignment

Use of a Random Number Table

Use of the Computer in Sample Selection

Sampling Error and Sampling Bias

Criteria for a Sampling Design

Stratified Random Sampling

Allocation of Sample Size Among Strata

Cluster Sampling

Systematic Sampling

Possible Problem of Periodicity

Considerations in Determining Sample Size–Random Sampling

Purposeful Sampling

Comprehensive Sampling

Maximum Variation Sampling

Extreme Case Sampling

Typical Case Sampling

Homogeneous Sampling

Other Variations of Purposeful Sampling

Sample Size of Purposeful Samples


Key Concepts



13. Measurement and Data Collection

Concepts of Measurement

Types of Measurement Scales

Reliability of Measurement

Empirical Procedures for Estimating Reliability

Expected Reliability Coefficients for Various Types of Tests

Validity of Measurement

Content-Related Evidence

Criterion-Related Evidence: Concurrent and Predictive

Construct-Related Evidence

The Variables Measured in Educational Research

Tests and Inventories Used for Measurement

Achievement Tests in Academic and Skills Areas

Attitude Inventories

Likert Scale

Semantic Differential

Aptitude Tests

Personality Measures

Rating Scales

Observation Systems

Measures Involving Holistic Scoring

Where to Find Test Information

Scoring and Data Preparation

Coding Data

An Example of a Data File


Key Concepts




14. Data Analysis: Descriptive Statistics

The Multiple Meanings of Statistics


Describing a Distribution of Scores

Measures of Central Tendency

Measures of Variability

Shapes of Distributions

Standard Scores

Properties of Standard Scores

Determining Standard Scores

Correlation — A Measure of Relationship

Uses of Correlation

Different correlation Coefficients

Data Analysis by Computer


Key Concepts



15. Data Analysis: Inferential Statistics

Context for Using Inferential Statistics

Testing Hypotheses and Estimating Parameters

Concept pf a Sampling Distribution

Building a Confidence Internal — The Example Continued

Possible Errors in Hypothesis Testing

Inferences from Statistics to Parameters: A Reviews

Parametric Analyses

The t-Distribution — Another Sampling Distribution

Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)

Nonparametric Analyses

The Chi-Square (χ2) Test and Distribution

Correlational Analyses

Analysis of Covariance

Selecting an Appropriate Statistical Analysis

Comments About Statistical Analysis



Key Concepts




16. Communicating About Research

Major Sections of the Research Proposal

Identification of the Problem

Review of the Literature

Methods of Procedures

Significance of the Proposed Research

Other Sections of the Research Proposal

Cover Page




Staff Resumes


Major Sections of the Research Report

Introduction, Including the Statement of the Problem

Review of the Literature

Methods or Procedures


Use of Tables

Conclusions, Recommendations, and Implications

Other Sections of the Research Report


Bibliography and Reference List


Putting a Report Together

Software for Word Processing

Guidelines for Presenting Papers at Meetings

Presentations to Dissertation and Thesis Committees


Key Concepts




16. Evaluating Research Reports

Types of Errors and Shortcomings in Reports

Critiquing Major Sections of a Research Report


Review of the Literature

Methods or Procedures


Conclusions, Recommendations, and Implications

Overall Impressions When Evaluating a Report

The Review Process for Journals

Suggested Disposition

The Evaluation of Proposals

Significance of the Proposed Research

Quality of the Proposed Research


Key Concepts



Appendix 1: Ethical and Legal Considerations in Conducting Research

Appendix 2: Solutions to Exercises

Appendix 3: Tables

Table A. Ordinates and Areas of the Normal Curve

Table B. Critical Values of t

Table C. Upper Percentage Points of the χ2 Distribution

Table D. Upper Percentage Points of the F-Distribution

Table E. Critical Values of the Correlation Coefficient

Glossary of Research Methods Terms

Name Index

Subject Index

Disk Instructions
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