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50 Years of ERIC
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ERIC Number: ED072107
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1972-Jun-1
Pages: 12
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Unobtrusive Measures.
Kagan, Spencer
Unobtrusive measures in psychological experiments are discussed. Six levels of unobtrusiveness are (1) Complete Unobtrusiveness, (2) Hidden Mechanical Intervention, (3) Hidden Observer, (4) Impinging Mechanical Intervention Not Recognized as Experimental, (5) Impinging Observer, and (6) Unobtrusive Measures within an Experimental Setting. Each of these levels is discussed. Distinguishing levels of obtrusiveness has merit only to the extent it allows identification of potential sources of reactivity. The two main advantages of unobtrusive measures are that they avoid many of the potential artifacts of lab experiments and that they increase the range of testable variables. The extent, by unobtrusive measures are: subject awareness, experimental arrangements, and limited method variance. The disadvantages of unobtrusive measures are decreased internal validity, inability to test many hypotheses, high dross or low saturation, which may be associated with a high cost of experimentation, possible invasion of privacy, and introduction of observer errors. Cooperation and competition could be studied in numerous ways by unobtrusive measures; examples are given as illustrations of these ways. (DB)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Economic Opportunity, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Unobtrusive Measures