LIS 504 - Topics and key terms

Topic Key terms
What is research? Kinds of research. research; qualitative research; quantitative research; empirical research; evaluation research; expert opinion; field research; deductive reasoning; inductive reasoning; law; theory positivism; causation; association; time order criterion; noise; bias; selective observation; nonresponse bias; reactive effect; Hawthorne effect; explanation
Steps in research. unit of analysis; cross-sectional study; longitudinal study; panel study
Reviewing the literature
Role of theory concept; conceptualization; idiographic; nomothetic
Researchable questions
Operational definitions definition; operational definition
Validity and reliability indicator; reliability; validity; measurement validity; construct validity; external validity; face validity; internal validity; predictive validity; replication; fallacy; ecological fallacy; hidden factor fallacy; exception fallacy; regression fallacy; triangulation; double blind
Levels of measurement variable; dependent variable; independent variable; interval scale; nominal scale; ordinal scale; ratio scale
Sampling. Generalizability. population; sampling; sampling frame; availability sampling; cluster sampling; multi-stage sampling; secondary sampling units; primary sampling units; purposive sampling; quota sampling; random sample; sequential sampling; snowball sampling; stratified sampling; systematic sampling; theoretical sampling; representativeness; sampling error; generalizability; cross population generalizability
Measures of central tendency and dispersion descriptive statistics; distribution; central tendency; average; mean; median; mode; dispersion; range; standard deviation; variance; percentile; quartile
Data gathering: surveys and questionnaires data; survey; questionnaire; response rate; closed question; exhaustivity; mutual exclusivity; fence sitters; floaters; filter question; sequence effect; primacy effect; recency effect; serial effect
The normal curve normal distribution
Hypothesis testing hypothesis; ex post facto hypothesizing; statistical inference; null hypothesis; test statistic; alternative hypothesis; confidence level; critical value; acceptance region; rejection region; type-I error; type-II error; confidence interval; error of estimation
Ethics ethical; informed consent; voluntary participation; confidentiality; anonymity
Communicating results empirical research report; introduction; literature survey; methodology; results; conclusion; referee
Chi-square and t test chi-square; t test
Visual display of results: charts, graphs, and tables graph; pie chart; histogram; lie factor
Experiments experiment; experimental design; experimental group; comparison group; control group; random assignment; matching; treatment; posttest measure
Unobtrusive measures unobtrusive measure; content analysis; erosion measure; bibliometrics
Interviews and focus groups interview; focus group; intensive interviewing
Other kinds of research action research; case study; participant observation; complete observer; ethnography; grounded theory research; historical research; primary source


Last updated October 31, 2000.
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Faculty of Information and Media Studies
University of Western Ontario,
London, Ontario
Canada, N6A 5B7