THE PERTINENCE IN KNOWLEDGEImportant How caveats variables fit into the research? What are variablesThe relationshipamog variables Different types of variables
How variables fit into the research?A variables is something that may vary or differ. For instances, proficiency in Spanishcan be considered as a variables because it may change over time or differ amongindividuals. As a tentative definition for statistical research in our field, we will viewvariables as human characteristics or abilities that differ over time or amongindividuals.Most variables that differ over time also vary among individuals, but the reverse is notnecessarily true. Consider, for instance, sex (a variable that is often considered instudies). Certainly, there are observable and interesting differences among individualson this variable.Variables versus constructsIt is important to distinguish variables from the nderlying constructs that they represent.Both variables and construct vary over time or among individuals. However, a variable isessentially what we can observe or qualify of the human characteristics or abilitiesinvolved, whereas a construct is the actual characteristic or abilities that it represents inhuman beings.
OperationalizationThe operationalization of variables is a researcher’s chance to explainhow each variable is being defined with respect to the construction inquestions. Such an operational definition should take a variable out ofthe realm of theory and plan it squarely in concrete reality. Basically, itmust be a definition that is based on observable, testable, orquantifiable characteristics. Moreover, an operational definition must beunique, or exclusive; the definition must not also fit other possibleconstructs.It is the reader’s responsibility to make sure that the variable, asoperationalized, makes sence – that it logically represents the constructinvolved. To this end, several questions might be posed:1. Is the construct labeled with sufficient precision?2. Does the operational definition of the variables adequately describe the characteristics of the construct in questions?3. Could the definition describe any other constructs?
In addition to knowing how constructs are Different types ofoperationalized as variables, it is important to variablesunderstand how much variables are classified and,indeed, manipulated by researchers in their questto improve our understanding of what goes on inthe lenguage classroom. To that end, let us turn tothe five different classifications of variables withinstatistical language studies: dependent,independent, moderator, control, and interveningvariables. These five types of variables aredistinguished primarily by the relationships that theresearchers hypothesizes to exist among them:• Dependent variables• Independent variables• Moderator variables• Control variables• Intervening variables
General relationshipOne attempt to express the relationship between the varios types of variables isfound in the model shown. In looking at this figure, recall that there are five typesof variables and that the researcher determines which variable fall into eachchategory when designing the study. Note also that all five types may be includedin all studies and that there are maybe more than one variable of each type thatis included.
• Important caveats Important caveatsYou should now have a good sense of how the five types of variables aredefined, how they interrelate, and how to identify them in a study. But isit clear why they are important?The variables are assigned and they way they interrelate are mostly in thehands of the researcher. That, along with the basic fallibility ofresearchers as human beings, place great responsibility to try to ferret outthe variables in a study. Are they clearly identify? If so, do they makesense in the chategories in which they are placed? Are they clearlythought out? Do they logically represent the underlying constructs ofinterest?. You should evalute the investigator’s use of labels for thevariables involved. Are they appropriate? Are they sensible? Are they toobroad? The relationship between variables must make sense. It is possibleto distinguish which type is which? Do the variables fit together properlyin these relationships? And do you agree with the relationships that theauthor has chosen to set up? It is agood idea to ask yourself wheter theuthor has included all the variables that are important to theinvestigation involved and none that are extraneous.
Thinkers on Educations - EDGAR MORIN“Learning about the world as world has become a vital and intellectual necessity.”