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Chapter 13

Data Collection in Quantitative Research

TEST QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS FOR EVALUATING STUDENT


LEARNING
A. Multiple Choice
1. What term is used to identify a tool used to conduct formal data collection that provides
constraints on both those collecting and those providing the information?
a. Interview schedule
b. Questionnaire
c. Instrument
d. Checklist

2. Narrative responses are appropriate for which type of questions?


a. Dichotomous
b. Rank-order
c. Open-ended
d. Rating

3. Which type of closed-ended questioning format is used to measure pain?


a. Multiple choice
b. Forced choice
c. Visual analog
d. Rank order

4. Which evaluation scale provides responses that range from strongly agree to strongly
disagree?
a. Likert

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b. Checklist
c. Event sampling
d. Semantic differential

5. What phenomenon is likely to occur when an observer is influenced by one characteristic


when judging other, unrelated characteristics?
a. Halo effect
b. Contrast effect
c. Error of leniency
d. Response set bias

B. True/False
1. The initial step associated with quantitative research is to develop a data collection plan.
2. Open-ended questions allow for the use of response options.
3. A vignette is a description of an event to which the respondent is asked to react.
4. A questionnaire is less cost-effective than an interview.
5. Biophysiologic measures are objective, accurate, and precise when taken appropriately.

C. Application Questions
1. Here is a brief summary of the data collection plan of a fictitious study. Read the summary and
then respond to the questions that follow.

Traina conducted a study to investigate the relationship between adults’ blood pressure (BP) and
their suppression of anger. Data were gathered from a sample of 347 healthy men and women aged
22 to 60 who were members of a gym in Washington, DC. Subjects completed two paper-and-
pencil scales: The Feeling of Anger Scale (FAS) and the Expression of Anger Scale (EAS). The
FAS asked subjects to rate the frequency and intensity of anger they felt in various circumstances,
on 9-point rating scales. Responses to 10 items were summed to yield a total score for felt anger.
The EAS scale asked them to rate the frequency and intensity of expressing or showing their anger
in the same circumstances on similar 9-point scales. The summed EAS score was subtracted from
the FAS score to yield an estimate of suppressed anger (i.e., anger felt but not demonstrated). The
subjects’ BP was measured by nurses using zero-calibrated aneroid sphygmomanometers. Subjects
had not engaged in vigorous exercise for at least 1 hour before measurement, which was made in
the right arm while subjects were seated. Second BP measurements were made after 10 more
minutes of rest, and the two measurements of diastolic and systolic BP were averaged. Traina also
gathered data on the subjects’ height and weight. Weight was measured with subjects wearing only
gym shorts and a t-shirt on an upright scale, to the nearest 10th of a pound. Heights were measured
without shoes, feet together. The body mass index (BMI) was calculated as weight in kilograms ÷
height in meters squared. Subjects also completed a brief questionnaire that asked about
demographic characteristics and exercise patterns. All instruments were assessed at being below the
eighth grade level. The results indicated that, for both men and women, higher diastolic and systolic
BP was associated with higher levels of suppressed anger, even when age, BMI, and exercise
intensity were statistically controlled.

Short-Answer Questions
a. Which of the following methods were used as data collection sources in Traina’s study?
 Self-reports

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 Observation
 Biophysiologic measures
 Records
b. Were the data collection methods structured or unstructured?
c. For which variables did Traina derive numeric information?
d. Which of the following specific methods were used?
 Likert-type scale
 Semantic differential
 Event history calendar
 Rank-order questions
 Q-sort
e. Were any data collected by means of:
 A telephone interview?
 A personal interview?
 A web-based interview?
 A self-administered questionnaire?
f. Was readability assessed?

Essay Questions
a. Comment on Traina’s data collection plan. Can you think of ways in
which the data collection and measurement effort could have been
improved?
b. Discuss which response set biases might be of concern in this study,
and for which variables. How might Traina have avoided these biases?
Should she have done so?

2. Develop research questions (or statements of purpose) for studies that could profitably use the
following methods of data collection and justify why this method would be appropriate:

a. Visual analogue scale:


b. Q-sort:
c. Event history calendar:
d. Structured diary:
e. Structured observation:

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