This short paper assignment will require you to explain the importance of random assignment in psychological research. Prompt: Imagine that you are an online tutor for an undergraduate Research Methods course. One day, you get this email:
Dear Tutor, I am having some trouble understanding why it is so important to randomly assign participants to experimental conditions. It seems to me that if you have a large enough sample, the results would probably be valid even if you didn’t bother to randomize the participants. Why is it important to go through the trouble of randomizing participants? Also, if you are going to randomly assign participants, how should you do it?
Respond to this student’s email, being sure to explain the concepts at the appropriate level for an undergraduate. In your response, be sure that you explain why it is important to randomize participants. Also, explain some of the ways that a researcher can randomly assign participants. Last, be sure to explain how a researcher can make valid conclusions even in situations where randomization is not possible.
Your paper should include all of the following elements:
· Discussion about the importance of randomization in a psychology experiment
· An explanation of the methods of randomization that a researcher can use to randomly assign participants
· An explanation of how a researcher can draw conclusions without randomization
Guidelines for Submission: Your paper must be submitted as a Microsoft Word document with double spacing, 12-point Times New Roman font, and one-inch margins. This paper should be a minimum of three pages (not including cover page and references).
Instructor Feedback: This activity uses an integrated rubric in Blackboard. Students can view instructor feedback in the Grade Center. For more information, review these instructions.
|Critical Elements||Exemplary (100%)||Proficient (90%)||Needs Improvement (70%)||Not Evident (0%)||Value|
|Importance of Randomization||Explains why randomization is important to psychological experiments and why results are not necessarily valid with a large sample size||Explains why randomization is important to psychological experiments, but does not address why results are not necessarily valid with a large sample size||Provides an incorrect explanation of how randomization is important to psychological experiments||Does not explain the importance of randomization||30|
|Methods of Randomization||Describes the methods researchers can use to randomly assign participants using detailed examples||Describes the methods researchers can use to randomly assign participants||Identifies methods researchers can use to randomly assign participants, but does not describe them, or the description lacks detail||Does not provide or describe methods researchers can use to randomly assign participants||20|
|Drawing Conclusion Without Randomization||Explains how a researcher can draw a valid conclusion without randomization and addresses how researchers can assess causality without randomization||Explains how a researcher can draw a valid conclusion without randomization, but does not address how researchers can assess causality without randomization||Provides an incorrect explanation of how a researcher can draw a valid conclusion without randomization||Does not explain how a researcher can draw a valid conclusion without randomization||30|
|Articulation of Response||Submission is free of errors related to citations, grammar, spelling, syntax, and organization and is presented in a professional and easy-to-read format||Submission has no major errors related to citations, grammar, spelling, syntax, or organization||Submission has some errors related to citations, grammar, spelling, syntax, or organization that negatively impact readability and articulation of main ideas||Submission has critical errors related to citations, grammar, spelling, syntax, or organization that prevent understanding of ideas||20|
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