Students in single-subject research class complete activities designed to provide them practice with applying the principles of these methods to research issues. This document provides descriptions about those activitities.
Please note: This page describes activities from an incarnation of the course that differs from the one being taught beginning 2018. Current students should be sure to consult course directions for their class. This description provides a general perspective on the course.
These activities include:
- There is a substantial literature on single-subject research, even without considering the number of published studies using the methods. The bibliography for the class is not exhaustive, but it is clearly more than we can read this term. Still, we shall read a lot. Please keep up with it.
- I have prepared a set of on-line quizzes tied to the readings for each class. I recommend that students complete them prior to the class sessions for which they are listed. Students will receive generic, immediate, narrative feedback about their answers. Completing these quizzes will help students both practice responding and refining answers knowing how they are doing. The quizzes in aggregate are worth 20% of the final grade.
- I expect to ask lots of questions during class sessions and hope student will answer. I'll promote this with various techniques (yes-no cards, electronic polling, etc.). Those who participate regularly will have the benefit of making express responses and getting immediate feedback. Students may also increase their level of participation by completing reading quizzes on line; these quizzes provide another opportunity to respond and receive feedback. This aspect of the class is not graded.
- The sorta-kinda-mid-term exam includes three parts: (a) short answer questions (similar to quiz items), (b) study design section (I give students a research question and they outline a plan for answering it using single-subject methods), and (c) critique (I provide a brief study and students identify important parts of it and discuss the methods used). I usually give the exam as a take-home activity with the requirement that students devote only a specified amount of time to it. Notes and printed materials (but not answers from previous years' course materials) may be consulted while completing the exam. This activity is graded on the usual letter-grade scale. The examination constitutes 40% of the final grade. The date for submission of the exam will announced.
- Project presentation
- Students will present a brief overview of their projects during an class meeting late in the term. It will occur a few weeks prior to the end of the term. Given the timing, it obviously will be a preliminary report. The report of research constitutes 10% of the final grade.
- Study Report
- Conducting a study or participating in the conduct of one is a very valuable learning experience. The next best thing is to develop a protocol for a study. A protocol is a detailed plan for implementing a study. The report of the results of a study or the protocol for a study serves as the final examination for the course. It provides students an opportunity to submit a written product showing that they know how to use single-subject research methods to address a research question. This activity is graded on the usual 100-point scale. I shall provide a more detailed description of the contents of this report. The study or protocol constitutes 30% of the final grade. It will be due by the date and time of the U.Va.-scheduled final exam.