Whether or not the manipulation of the independent variable really makes a significant difference on the dependent variable.

Directions: Choose the best answer from those listed and circle the letter.

  1. refers to whether or not the manipulation of the independent variable really makes a significant difference on the dependent variable.

A. Internal variance
B. Internal validity
C. Randomization
D. External validity

  1. Controlling extraneous variables means that you are trying to eliminate the possibility that variance in the dependent variable might be due to something other than:

A. The influence of the independent variable.
B. The nature of the dependent variable.
C. The type of research design.
D. The duration of the study.

  1. Pretest sensitization in which subjects, as a result of taking a pretest, are “clued in” to the researcher’s interests or desired responses, is a threat to .

A. Internal validity.
B. Internal reliability.
C. External validity.
D. External reliability.

  1. If a researcher wanted to discover the frequency with which nursing students participated in aerobic exercise, the type of study most likely done would be which of the following?

A. Experimental
B. Quasi-experimental
C. Non-experimental 
D. Factorial

  1. In deciding on what type of research design to use, the researcher would need to know that the design for a study is a:

A. Summary of specific sub-problems to direct the study.
B. Set of instructions to measure the phenomenon.
C. Plan to guide data collection and analysis.
D. Theory to be tested.

  1. Which of the following is a design flaw associated with an “after only” (post-test only) experimental study design?

A. The absence of an independent variable.
B. The assumption that the treatment group and control group are comparable.
C. The lack of a control group.
D. The inability to randomize subjects into groups.

  1. A design in which the experimental and control groups are known to be non-equivalent, the most serious threat to internal validity is:

A. Testing.
B. Selection.
C. Mortality.
D. Maturation.

  1. With a descriptive design or non-experimental study, as compared to an experimental study, the researcher forfeits manipulation of the:

A. Independent variable.
B. Dependent variable.
C. Extraneous variable.
D. Outcome variable.

  1. In a study in which medical diagnosis is the suspected independent variable, a descriptive or non-experimental study is essential because the independent variable is:

A. Inherently not manipulable.
B. Ethically not manipulable.
C. Unalterable.
D. None of the above, you should use on experimental design.

  1. All experimental research designs have one common feature:

A. Randomization
B. Multiple groups
C. Repeated measures
D. Manipulation

  1. According to the text, a true experiment requires all of the following except:

A. Control.
B. Manipulation.
C. Maturation.
D. Randomization.

  1. Ways by which a researcher can control extraneous variables in a study include (MARK ALL THAT APPLY:

A. Using a homogenous sample.
B. Matching subjects.
C. Build them into the design as independent variable.
D. Randomization.

  1. Which of the following experimental approaches is weakest in terms of the researcher’s ability to establish causality?

A. Factorial
B. One group pre-test/post-test
C. One group post-test
D. Insufficient information to make a determination

  1. Using the principle of homogeneity to control for extraneous variables has negative implications for:

A. Informed consent
B. Generalizability of the findings
C. Measuring the dependent variable.
D. Internal bias in the design.

MATCHING: (Questions 15-19) Match each problem statement with one of the phrases listed below that indicates a potential reason for using a non-experimental approach:

    SET B   SET A



  1. Does heroin addiction among mothers affect Apgar scores of infants?

Why is the age of a hemodialysis patient related to the incidence of the disequilibrium syndrome?

What body positions increase respiratory function?
A. Independent variable not manipulable

B. Ethical constraints on manipulation

C. No constraints on manipulation

  1. Does a nurse’s gender affect his or her salary and rate of promotion? 


  1. When subjects’ behaviors are affected not by the treatment per se, but by their knowledge of participating in a study, the internal validity of the results is limited because of the:

A. Selection threat.
B. Hawthorne effect.
C. Mortality threat.
D. Maturation threat.

  1. Identify the definition of maturation threat:

A. Changes that occur within subjects during the course of the study
B. Effects of subject’s awareness of his being in a study
C. Effects of differences among subjects who were selected
D. The result of becoming accustomed to the instrument

  1. What type of experimental design would be used with the following example: “The purpose of this research was to determine the effectiveness of selected interventions using increased patient participation to achieve favorable intermediate outcomes in the areas of foot care, increased exercise activities and reduced use of tobacco.”

A. Two group pre-test/post-test
B. Two group post-test
C. One group post-test
D. The problem would not require an experimental approach

  1. A primary objective of a true experiment is to enable the researcher to infer:

A. Changes are due to extraneous variables.
B. No relationship between independent and dependent variables.
C. No threats to external validity are present.
D. Cause and effect.

  1. When a quasi experiment design is used, the control group is:

A. Non-existent.
B. Not very similar to the experimental group.
C. Very similar to the experimental group.
D. Larger than the experimental group.

  1. When data are gathered prior to the institution of some treatment, the initial data gathering is referred to as the:

A. Practice test.
B. Pre-test
C. Post-test.
D. There never is any data gathering prior to the treatment.

  1. When no variable is manipulated in a study, the research is called:

A. Experimental.
B. Quasi-experimental.
C. Non-experimental
D. Post-test only.

  1. Control over extraneous variables is required for maintaining what aspect of the study?

A. External validity
B. Internal validity
C. Instrumental validity
D. Reliability

  1. The differential loss of subjects from comparison groups is the threat known as:

A. Selection.
B. Testing.    
C. Maturation.
D. Mortality.

  1. A one-group pre-/post-test design is an example of a:

A. True experiment design.
B. Quasi experiment design.
C. Cross- sectional design.
D. None of the above, it is not a research design.

  1. A study is internally valid if:

A. All alternative explanations of results can be ruled out.
B. An experimental design was used.
C. Randomization was used.
D. A change in the dependent variable is detected.

  1. A study that followed over a 20-year period, users and non-users of oral contraceptives to find long-term effects would be called a:

A. Prediction study.
B. Retrospective study.
C. Longitudinal study
D. Cross- sectional study

  1. The overall plan by the researcher to obtain answers to the question being studied is called:

A. Analysis of data.
B. Discussion.
C. Problem statement.
D. Research approach or design.

  1. If a researcher wanted to examine the reasons nursing students performed breast self- examination, the design would be classified as:

A. Qualitative.
B. Correlational.
C. Experimental.
D. Quasi-experimental.

  1. When data are collected at one point in time only, the design is referred to as:

A. Longitudinal.
B. Cross sectional.
C. Time series.
D. Solomon-four-group.

  1. If a researcher wants to describe a topic separately rather than analyzing the association among topics, the appropriate design is:

A. Qualitative.
B. Correlational.
C. Experimental.
D. Quasi-experimental.

  1. A study that reviewed nursing textbooks from 1950 – 1980 to explore changes in nursing procedures would be called a:

A. Retrospective study.
B. Prospective study.
C. Cross-sectional study.
D. Experimental study.

MATCHING: (Questions 36-43) The following are research question statements taken from published research reports in Nursing Research. Use the following key in SET A to select the appropriate approach or design to study the question:

    SET B   SET A


  1. The purpose of this study was to determine if pre-admission clients could learn post-operative exercise activities from self-instruction booklets sent to their home, thus requiring less teaching time during hospitalization than a comparable control group.

The purpose of this research was to determine the effectiveness of selected interventions using increased patient participation to achieve favorable intermediate outcomes in the areas of improved foot care, increased exercise activities and reduced use of tobacco.
A. Qualitative

B. Correlational

C. Experimental

  1. This phase of the research was undertaken to obtain a description of a specific Greek-American ethnomedical configuration, the matiasma (evil eye).
  2. The purposes of this study were to determine if: 1) differences in learning style preferences between traditional and non-traditional students could be demonstrated.
  3. The questions addressed were: What is the form and strength of the relationship between key psychosocial and perinatal variables and perception of the birth experience.
  4. This study investigated if a structured interaction of parent with infant positively influences parents’ perceptions of their infant.
  5. This study examined patterns of relationships among perception of situational control, health, socioeconomic status, functional dependency, length of stay and morale in institutionalized elderly.