Aileen Mae B. Romero
Kristine C. Soltis
Researchers investigate possible relationships among
variables without trying to influence those variables.
I. The Nature of Correlational Research
a. The major characteristic of correlational research is
seeking out associations among variables.
II. Purposes of Correlational Research
a. Correlational studies are carried out either to help
explain important human behaviors or to predict likely
b. If a relationship of sufficient magnitude between
two variables, it becomes possible to predict a score on
either variable if a score on the other variable is known.
III. Complex Correlational techniques
a. Multiple regressions
b. The coefficient of multiple correlations (R)
c. The value of a prediction equation
d. When the criterion variable
e. Factor analysis
f. Path analysis
IV. Basic Steps in Correlational Research
a. Problem Selection
d. Design and Procedures
e. Data Collection
f. Data Analysis and Interpretation
V. What do Correlation coefficients tell us?
a. The meaning of a given correlation coefficient
depends on how it is applied.
VI. Threats to internal validity in
a. Subject Characteristics
d. Data-collector Characteristics
e. Data-collector Bias
VII. Evaluating Threats to Internal Validity in
a. Ask: What are the specific factors that are known to
affect one of the variables being correlated or which
logically would affect it?
b. Ask: What is the likelihood of each of these factors
also affecting the other variable being correlated with the
c. Evaluate the various threats.
VIII. An Example of Correlational Research
Reading this chapter should enable students to:
Describe briefly what is meant by association research;
State the two major purposes of correlational studies;
Distinguish between predictor and criterion variables;
Explain the role of correlational studies in exploring
Explain how a scatterplot can be used to predict an
Describe what is meant by a prediction equation;
Explain briefly the main ideas underlying multiple
correlation, factors analysis, and path analysis;
Identify and describe briefly the steps involved in
conducting a correlational study;
Interpret correlation coefficients of the different magnitude;
Explain the rationale underlying partial correlation;
Describe some of the threats to internal validity that exist in
correlation studies, and explain how to identify them;
Discuss how to control for these threats;
Recognize a correlational study when they come across one in
the educational research literature.
Points to Stress
Teaching Suggestion and Class Activities