PSY635 Week Two Scenario
Three instructors teach the same online course and have devised an experimental intervention to
improve student motivation to actively participate in discussions. The course is a core
requirement for all psychology students, and students are assigned to particular sections at
random rather than by instructor choice.
The average class size for this particular course is 45 students. To get a large enough sample for
adequate analysis, the instructors have decided to include two sections for each instructor in the
experiment. The first section will serve as the control group (no experimental intervention), and
the second section will receive the intervention. Anonymous data about the dependent variable
will be pooled for the three sections comprising the control group and the three sections that
receive the intervention.
The independent variable is the intervention, which may be an incentive such as digital badges or
an instructional intervention involving changing the instructions for the guided response. The
dependent variable will be the number of response (not initial) posts per student that exceed two
lines of text. The researchers have decided to use the Week Four discussion for data collection,
reasoning that it may take some time for the intervention to become effective.