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- 2. Learning Objectives Understand what is meant by a correlation study. Be able to explain the difference between a positive, negative and zero correlation. Be able to explain the strengths and weaknesses of using a correlation study.
- 4. Correlation Studies. A process, rather than an actual method Methods to gain a correlation analysis: 1. Self report: questionnaires/ interviews. 2. Observations It is the way that the data is analysed which is important.
- 5. Correlation analysis Looking for a relationship between two variables e.g. Aim: to investigate whether there is a relationship between how often ethnic minority groups are shown on television and the level of racism in society. Method: Variable 1 is measured by counting how often individuals from ethnic groups appear on television in one day on BBC1, ITV1 and Channel 4. Variable 2 is measured using an interview to assess partcipants’ racist attitudes. Write a hypothesis for the above study
- 6. Hypothesis: There will be a significant correlation between the number of times that individuals from ethnic minority groups appear on television in one day across BBC1, ITV1 and Channel 4 and participants’ racist attitude scores as measured by an interview.
- 7. Examples of correlations You have 2 minutes for yourself and a partner to come up with as many correlations that you can think of, which a psychologist many be interested in. Just make them up!!!
- 8. Quantitative Data Correlational analysis can only be done on quantitative data as it is a statistical process. Amount Time Score The strength and direction of a relationship is measured. The relationship can be shown graphically using a scattergram. A correlation co-efficient, which is between -1 and +1, measures the relationship. Correlations can be categorised into positive, negative and zero correlations.
- 9. Positive Correlation (r=1) As one variable increases then so does the other variable. Example? A perfect positive correlation has a co- efficient of +1. This means that the two variables increase in the exact relation to one another.
- 10. Negative Correlation (r= -1) There is a relationship As one variable increases the other variable decreased. Example? A perfect negative correlation has a co- efficient of -1. This means that one variable increases at exactly the same rate as the other decreases.
- 11. Zero Correlation (r= 0) There is no clear relationship Example? A true zero correlation has a co-efficient of 0.0 This means that there is absolutely no indication of a pattern between variables.
- 12. Advantages and Disadvantages See correlational studies handout.
- 13. Summary A correlation study is not an experiment. A correlation study measures the relationship between two variables. A positive correlation means two variables change in the same direction, a negative correlation means they change in the opposite direction and a zero correlation means they show no pattern of relationship. Correlations do not allow researchers to establish cause and effect. They allow them to statistically analyse naturally occurring events that could not be set up experimentally.