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Measurement Error in Behavioral Sciences: Constructs and Observables

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30 Questions

What is the primary effect of random error on the data?

It increases the variability around the average

Which type of error tends to yield a systematic lower agreement rate in survey responses?

Systematic error

What is the primary reason why constructs in the behavioral sciences cannot be measured directly?

They are abstract in nature

What is the difference between the value of a characteristic provided by the respondent and the true value of that characteristic referred to as?

Measurement error

What does the presence of systematic error result in?

A bias in the measurement

What is the process of establishing a rule of correspondence between a theoretical concept and observable behaviors called?

Operationalization

How does random error affect the average performance of the group?

It does not affect the average

What do behavioral manifestations or proxies typically reflect in relation to a construct?

Very specific aspects of the construct

Why are constructs central to behavioral theory?

Because they are the building blocks of any behavioral theory

What is the term used to describe the difference between the value of a characteristic provided by the respondent and the true value of that characteristic?

Measurement error

What is the nature of the continuum along which subjects are positioned in relation to a construct?

Latent

What is the relationship between overt behaviors and a construct?

Overt behaviors represent the construct manifestation

What is a primary consideration when deciding on the most appropriate data collection method?

The desired level of measurement error

What can occur due to poorly worded survey instructions or ambiguous definitions?

Data specification problems

What is a factor that can influence the response to a question?

The interviewer's effect

What can be a limitation of the questions in a questionnaire?

They are incapable of eliciting the required information

What is a consideration when designing a questionnaire?

The visual layout of the questionnaire

What are the four sources of measurement error mentioned in the text?

The questionnaire, the data collection method, the interviewer, and the respondent

What is a primary way an interviewer can introduce error in survey responses?

By probing inappropriately when handed an inadequate response

What is a source of measurement error that arises from the respondent's perspective?

Respondent interpretation of questionnaire items

What is the process of forming memories or retaining knowledge related to in the context of measurement error?

Encoding of information

What is the result of an interviewer varying their inflection or tone of voice?

Respondent confusion or misleading

What is the process of choosing an appropriate answer from available options based on retrieved information?

Judgment of appropriate answer

How can an interviewer's personal mannerisms influence survey responses?

By displaying other changes in personal mannerisms

What is the primary purpose of administering different treatments to randomly selected subsamples of the full survey sample?

To quantify measurement error

In which type of setting can measurement error be studied?

In both qualitative and quantitative settings

What is the main reason why survey managers emphasize controlling the sources of measurement error?

Because it is expensive and difficult to implement

What is the purpose of triangulating across several measures?

To account for different biases in each measure

What is the purpose of double-checking data?

To identify errors in data collection

What is the benefit of making observations or measurements as unobtrusive as possible?

To reduce social desirability biases

Learn about the challenges of measuring abstract attributes in behavioral sciences, including indirect observation and inference from overt behaviors. Understand how constructs like intelligence and depression are represented through observable manifestations. Test your knowledge on measurement error in this field.

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