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##### Tools of Research

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**Tools of Research**Week 2 Lecture 1**Agenda**• The library and its resources • Internet • Techniques of measurement • Statistics • The human mind ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**The Library and Its Resources**• Electronic Journals • Week 3, lecture 1 will have detailed introduction on how to use the USYD library system ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Internet**• Finding literature • Collecting data • Download secondary data • Web crawler • Collect primary data • Online experiment • Online survey ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Measurement -- Definition**• Definition • Measurement is limiting the data of any phenomenon – substantial or insubstantial – so those data may be interpreted and, ultimately, compared to an acceptable qualitative or quantitative standard. • Substantial measurement • Execution time, throughput, and so on.. • Insubstantial measurement • User-friendliness, Attitudes, feelings, opinions ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Measuring insubstantial phenomena**• The scenario • A group of 9 people, who work together in a personnel department of a large corporation, are going to attend a recognition dinner at an exclusive hotel. After arriving, they greet each other and have a brief conversation before dinner. They form some conversation groups as show in next slides ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Interpersonal relationships**• How to measure the interpersonal dynamics of the group? • Who greet whom with enthusiasm or with indifference? • Who joins in conversation with whom? • Who seems to be a relative outsider? • To merely observe the behavior of individuals in a particular situation is not to measure it. ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**A possible approach**• Ask each person in the group to record three choices • The individual in the group whom the person likes most • The individual in the group whom the person like least • The individual for whom the person has no strong feeling one way or another. ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Sociogram**• Weight the data into numerical categories • +1 for a positive choice • 0 for indifference • -1 for a negative choice ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Sociometric matrix**ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**What we can discover?**• Jeff is the in formal or popular leader • Probably some schism and tension are present in this group • Friendship pairs may lend cohesion to the group • Tim apparently is the isolate of the group ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Four scales of measurement**• Nominal scale of measurement • Measure data to some degree by assigning names (numbers) to them. • Elemental and unrefined, • typical use: classification • Male-female • Social classes • Only a few statistics are appropriate for analyzing nominal data ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Four scales of measurement**• Ordinal scales of measurement • Data can be rank-ordered • Level of education: elementary, high school, college and graduate education. • Distance between attributes do not have any meaning • Typical use – rankings • Preference data • Attitude measures ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Four scales of measurement**• Interval scale of measurement • Features • It has equal units of measurement • Its zero point has been established arbitrarily • Typical use: • Temperature scales: Fahrenheit and Celsius • Rating scales employed by many businesses, survey groups and professional organizations are often assumed to be on interval scales ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Four scales of measurement**• Ratio scale of measurement • Difference between interval and ratio scales • Temperature: We can’t say 30C is twice as warm as 15C. • Execution time: 30 seconds is twice as fast as 15 seconds • Features • It has equal units of measurement • It has an absolute zero point • It is possible to multiply and divide scale numbers meaningfully and thereby form ratios ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Measurement Scales: summary**• If you can say that • One object is different from another, you have a nominal scale; • One object is bigger or better or more of anything than another, you have an ordinal scale; • One object is so many units(degrees, inches) more than another, you have an Interval scale; • One object is so many times as big or bright or tall or heavy as another, you have a ratio scale. ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Mini workshop**• Indicate the levels of measurements of the following variables: ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Validity and reliability of measurement**• Validity • The extent to which the instrument measures what it is supposed to measure • Well-established measurement • Other measurement, measurement of insubstantial phenomena • To what extent does a standardized IQ test actually measure a person’s intelligence? • Problem of “Professor’s availability” measurement ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Validity and Reliability of measurement**• Reliability • The stability and consistency of a measure • Validity vs. Reliability ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Statistics as a tool of research**• Primary functions of statistics • Descriptive • Summarize the general nature of the data obtained • What’s the average • How disperse the data are • How closely two or more characteristics are Interrelated • more • Inferential • Help the researcher make decisions about the data • Statistics software • Excel • SPSS, SAS ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**The human mind as a tool of research**• Methods of knowing • Method of tenacity • Method of authority • Method of intuition (a priori method) • Method of Science • Self-correction ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**The human mind as a tool of research**• Deductive Logic • Starts from one or more premises, draw conclusion through logic reasoning • Premise: All tulips are plants • Premise: All plants produce energy through photosynthesis • Conclusion: All tulips must produce energy through photosynthesis • Premise can be false • Premise: All metals expand when heated • Premise: Tulips are metals • Conclusion: Tulips will expend when heated • Deductive logic is extremely valuable for generating research hypotheses and testing them ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**The human mind as a tool of research**• Inductive Reasoning • Begins with empirical observations and draw general conclusions from them • Observations: Psychiatrists have found that psychological problems in patients depend upon their experiences in childhood • Conclusion: All psychological problems are based on experiences in childhood. • We can never be 100 percent sure about the inductive conclusions ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Induction and Deduction**Laws and theories deduction induction Facts acquired through observation Explanations and Predictions ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Scientific Method**• Control • Enable researcher to identify the causes of his or her observation • Operational definition • Terms must be defined by the steps or operations used to measure them • “Anxiety causes students to score poorly in test” • What is meant by “anxiety”? • Replication • The same result must be found if the study is repeated • Hypothesis testing • “being ill is a punishment for being sinful” • “Boys are better than girls at mathematics” ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Critical thinking**• Verbal reasoning • Argument analysis • Decision making • Critical analysis of prior research ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Facility with language**• Communicating effectively through writing • Say what you mean to say • Keep your primary objective in writing your paper in mind at all times, and focus your discussion accordingly • Provide an overview of what you will be talking about • Organize your ideas into general and more specific categories and use headings and subheadings to guide your readers through your discussion of these categories • Provide transitional phrases ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Facility with language**• Use concrete examples to make abstract ideas more understandable • Use appropriate punctuation • Use figures and tables when such mechanisms can more effectively present or organize your ideas and findings • At the conclusion of a chapter or major section, summarize what you’ve said • Anticipate that you will almost certainly have to write multiple drafts. ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney**Summary**• The library and its resources • Internet • Techniques of measurement • How to measure intangible concept • Different scales of measurements • Validity and reliability • Statistics • Descriptive and inferential • Several statistics packages • The human mind ISYS3015 Analytical Methods for IS Professionals School of IT, The University of Sydney